Day 30

King Jehoshaphat’s Reforms

2 Chronicles 19:1-11, 2 Chronicles 20:1-37, 2 Chronicles 21:1; Ezra 8:21-23

BY Ginny Owens

I think Jehoshaphat has a kind of eye-opening experience in 2 Chronicles 19. Prior to this chapter, he initiated a few reforms—tearing down the high places and Asherah poles (v.3)—but since then, he had witnessed the death of Israel’s king, who mocked and disobeyed God (2Chronicles 18) and heard God’s voice through Jehu, the seer’s son (2 Chronicles 19:2–3). Jehoshaphat had seen God’s mighty hand at work among those who were against Him, and he had received a personal wake-up call from this same God. For Jehoshaphat, God and His greatness were no longer nice ideas he could toy around with but realities he had experienced and must surrender to. It was not enough to make concessions to God; Jehoshaphat and Judah had to put Him at the center. His path had to be their only way forward. Jehoshaphat’s word to all of Judah was essentially, “Stop! Open your eyes and hearts to the reality of our God!”

Jehoshaphat appointed judges and leaders who discerned the Lord’s will and settled disputes according to it. He reinstated the high priest’s role as the ultimate spiritual leader. He warned all the leaders that God had a right path and that guilt and wrath were incurred for not following it (vv.5–11).

Second Chronicles 20 shows us that seeking the Lord in life’s ordinary matters prepares us for seeking Him amidst our greatest fears. When Jehoshaphat learned of a multi-enemy army coming for Judah, his firsthand experience of God’s greatness and power led him to fight his fear on his knees and to lead his people to do the same (2Chronicles 20:1–5). In his public prayer, Jehoshaphat brought to mind God’s greatness and power over all the world and His history of faithfulness to Israel—God provided this land and brought them to it, after all (vv.6–7). Jehoshaphat also remembered God’s promise to be faithful, and pleaded for this to continue, ending with a confession we all can appreciate: “We do not know what to do but we look to you” (v.12). Through Jahaziel, the Lord told Judah that it was indeed His battle and their task was to “stand still” and watch Him rescue them (v.17).

Seeking the Lord always and ultimately ends in praise! In this section of reading, nothing else is said about fear, only worship. Judah sang and praised its way to battle the next day, where singers on the front lines sang, “Give thanks to the Lord, for his faithful love endures forever” (v.21). And the Lord rescued His people as He promised. 

We know the best part of God’s rescue: The One Judah could only imagine, the One who would bring ultimate salvation and rest. He won the final battle for our lives! Our change comes as we recognize how deeply loved and forgiven we are in Him. Only by His power can we stop living half-heartedly and turn wholly to Him, praising and watching as He changes our hearts and wins our battles.

Post Comments (53)

53 thoughts on "King Jehoshaphat’s Reforms"

  1. Kimberly Z says:

    @Traci Gendron I’m so sorry for the guilt you feel during Covid but just know so many strange rules were implied to so many people and nobody knew how or if they could stand up to them. I work for a hospital and during the days when they were extremely short workers we would work extra hours in different areas to help out. One being the door monitors. I cannot tell you how hard it was to tell people they couldn’t see their family members because the number of people in that room had maxed out or whatever silly rule they had at the time. I finally got to the point where I’d wink and tell them to go on up but don’t tell them how you got in. Such an unfair rule during that time. Just know that Tanner would probably tell you the same thing to not feel guilty. You took amazing care of him his whole life and he will always know that. Praying for you tonight and all prayer requests.

  2. Victoria E says:

    Mercy, praying for your parents !

  3. Victoria E says:

    SharBear I love this song! Thanks for the reminder. And these chapters wow! Just wow! So many verses I had seen out of context but putting them all together and in one narrative is so powerful to me! May I always praise God in my battles!

  4. Claire B says:

    ♥️ @ Traci Gendron – I cannot fathom the guilt and the loss you feel piled on top of guilt. Prayers for peace. We did so many thing wrong in the pandemic that hopefully we gained some knowledge and compassion.

  5. Aimee Rogers says:

    Bugs Bunny was always my favorite…I guess I am old too! Lol

  6. Kim Schuffert says:

    Mercy, My devotion today talked about God’s great strength- He spoke the world into existence, He calmed the raging sea. Our fears can interfere with God’s strength. Instead of trying to quiet your fears, draw closer to God

  7. Mercy says:

    Happy Tuesday she’s. May we all rejoice and be glad this day that the Lord has made :)
    A few points of Scriptures that spoke to me personally today:
    1. “should you love those who hate the Lord?” (2 Chronicles 19:2), hmm… don’t love God’s enemies! This leads me to think of some boundaries to where our love should land. Might be an unpopular and controversial point, but that’s our God, hallelujah, counter culture and controversial at best :)
    2. The battles is the Lord’s, we just need to go out to confront the enemies (you won’t need to fight and see the salvation of the Lord, tomorrow go out against them,,,2 Chronicles 20:17)
    3. Praise is a weapon to launch God’s ambushments against our enemies (And when they BEGAN to sing and to praise, the Lord sent ambushments against the children of their enemies…2 Chronicles 20:22). This reminds me of Joshua’s group of singers and worshippers strategically placed in front to walk around the Jericho walls to just praise and worship. Same approach, same mind-blowing hard to believe victory. This really convicted me, as I didn’t always have the right posture as Scriptures stated I should- when I felt defeated, I could not crawl out of bed, soaked in self pity, thinking God has left. BUT GOD…never once will He leave us alone as orphans, He will surely come to us (John 14:18), a promise of His faithfulness. Praises and worship will be my weapons to launch God’s blow to anything that is pulling us down.

    Ladies, I am asking for prayers for my parents, especially for my mom. Please pray for her healing from her childhood wounds, also guilt from the way she treated us, and deliverance from narcissistic traits, deliverance from wrong doctrines (she and dad are now tuning into Buddhist teachings to find inner peace, healing and forgiveness on youtube..i am shocked and disheartened). I don’t know how the issues got compiled so quickly. Please pray for them to not be entangled by doctrines of evil and turn to Christian teachings instead. They think I am a Jesus fanatic and didn’t take my Christian advice (or so it seems). Thank you for your prayers. God bless you all.

    Be blessed dear sweet sisters. May we seek the Lord in life’s ordinary matters in order to seek Him amidst our greatest fears (thank you Ginny for this great wisdom!).

  8. Jennifer Anapol says:

    I want to live my life like Jehoshaphat: praying and worshipping God during a battle and in everyday life. I love how this chapter shows how important worship can be when we are going through a trial.

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