By Michael Wambugu
When King Jehoshaphat received news that three kings had come together and marshaled their armies (Moabites, Ammonites and Meunites) to attack Judah, he resolved to enquire of the LORD. He proclaimed a fast for all Judah. The Bible says, “Alarmed, Jehoshaphat resolved to enquire of the LORD, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah. The people of Judah came together to seek help from the LORD; indeed, they came from every town in Judah to seek him,” (2 Chron. 20:3, 4).
The Bible reveals what went through the mind of King Jehoshaphat when he received news of an imminent attack – he was alarmed. Think about it; three kings had ganged up to attack his kingdom. Is it not true that we too sometimes receive news that alarms us? Or we observe events taking a turn that alarms us. We might not want to disclose that we are alarmed, but deep in our hearts we know we are. Maybe it is a job threatened by termination; a business facing imminent collapse; a marriage that is going bad; a family that is breaking apart; a diagnosis that spells no hope. Jehoshaphat realized that there was no time to solicit for help from friendly kingdoms – probably because there was no guarantee that they would offer to help. Or, probably because the combined force of the three kingdoms poised to attack was too strong to resist.
King Jehoshaphat rallied his people to “seek help from the LORD.” It doesn’t make sense to the human mind, to prepare for an impending attack by rallying people to a time of prayer and fasting. The Apostle Paul put it this way: “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned,” (1 Cor. 2:14). But if you have the Spirit of God, you understand why Jehoshaphat chose this strategy. Apostle Paul said we understand because “we have the mind of Christ” (1 Cor. 2:16).