In the morning they got up early and went out to the wilderness of Tekoa. As they were about to go out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Hear me, Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem.
Believe in the LORD your God, and you will be established; believe in His prophets, and you will succeed.” - 2 Chronicles 20:20
As we continue on with this epic story in 2 Chronicles today, we read that the people rose early and went out to meet their enemy in the wilderness, about 12 miles south of Jerusalem. They had been told the LORD would be with them. They had been told they would see the salvation of the LORD. They had these promises to hold onto from the day before. But this was a new day, the day they were walking into the wilderness to meet a great horde that was against them.
Jehoshaphat, their leader and king, tells them twice to BELIEVE. That is their action. An active and obedient trust that God rewards faith. The reward for their belief is that they will be established as a people, they will succeed — that’s what they’re told. They have to act on their belief, to walk into the wilderness and meet their enemy. Judah’s part to play in this instance is not to take up arms but to exercise FAITH. They literally stepped out in faith for 12 miles knowing this would be a very different kind of battle.
We read in Hebrews 11:6 that without FAITH it is impossible to please God, for whoever would draw near to God must BELIEVE that he exists and that he rewards those who seek Him. This faith includes belief in God’s existence and especially in God’s trustworthiness to keep His promise to reward his followers.
The story of Judah walking into an uncertain battle, armed with belief, inspires me to ‘keep on keeping on’ trusting God. I don’t want to miss out on what God is up to! I need to keep my belief and faith strong. As a Christian, I have so many promises from God in His Word. I have the Holy Spirit with me who is actively helping and speaking. I have my own stories of God’s rescue, and stories from the lives of other believers to build up my belief. I carry all this goodness with me as I walk in faith, and you do too.
These are unsettling times we are living through, it’s not easy, and no one knows how long it will last. Let’s be like the people of Judah in this story, who obeyed and walked toward difficult things – BELIEVING God was with them and would reward their faith. The key is FAITH. Draw near to God. If you’re feeling unstable on the inside, just try it. If your faith is weak, seek God. Anchor your soul deep in His Word and His promises.
Our faith pleases God.