THE WEAPON OF PRAISE

WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL

OCTOBER 25, 2022

TOPIC: THE WEAPON OF PRAISE

BY T. O. BANSO

“Now when they began to sing and to praise, the LORD set ambushes against the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; and they were defeated. For the people of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of Mount Seir to utterly kill and destroy them. And when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, they helped to destroy one another” (2 Chronicles 20:22-23 New King James Version).

In 2 Chronicles 20, the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir came together to fight the people of Judah. The Ammonites and the Moabites were the descendants of Ammon and Moab, the sons of Lot from her two daughters (Genesis 19:37-38) while the people of Mount Seir, also called the Edomites, were the descendants of Esau (Genesis 25:30). As Jehoshaphat said in 2 Chronicles 20:10, God did not allow Israel to invade these three nations when they came out of the land of Egypt; they turned from them and did not destroy them (Numbers 20:21; Deuteronomy 2:4,9,19). However, they became Israel’s enemies.

Following the prophecy of Jahaziel that the people of Judah should not be afraid and the LORD would give them victory, the King of Judah, Jehoshaphat, told his people to believe in the LORD their God, and they would be established, and believe in His prophets, and they would prosper.

Jehoshaphat consulted with the people. He appointed those who would sing to the LORD, and praise the beauty of holiness. They went out before the army, saying: “Praise the LORD, for His mercy endures forever” (2 Chronicles 20:21 New King James Version). This phrase also means, “Give thanks to the Lord, for his love endures forever” (New International Version) or  “Give thanks to the Lord, for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever!” (Amplified Bible).

The weapon the people of Judah used in this war was praise or thanksgiving, and there is no record that Jehoshaphat received a direct command from God to do this. It wasn’t even part of Jahaziel’s prophecy in verses 13-17 about the victory God had promised them. Nevertheless, Jehoshaphat appointed those who went out before the army, saying: “Praise the LORD, for His mercy endures forever” as they sang to the LORD, and praise the beauty of holiness.

To ask unarmed singers to go in front of an army, to face a great multitude, who was armed, was tantamount to asking them to go and commit suicide. Naturally, it could be described as a foolish strategy. But the Bible does not record any objection to the command of King Jehoshaphat.

In a similar case, Israelites’ men of war, as commanded by the LORD through Joshua, marched around the city of Jericho once for six days and on the seventh day marched around the city seven times, shouted the seventh time, and the wall fell flat and they captured the city (Joshua 6).

But in the defeat of the three nations that came against Judah, the weapon of victory was praise. 2 Chronicles 20:22-23 says, “Now when they began to sing and to praise, the LORD set ambushes against the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; and they were defeated. For the people of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of Mount Seir to utterly kill and destroy them. And when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, they helped to destroy one another” (New King James Version).

The weapon that defeated the enemies was praise. There was confusion in the camp of the enemies. Two of the enemy nations destroyed the army of the third nation and, thereafter, destroyed one another. Obviously, they didn’t know what they were doing! How could three nations come together to fight a nation only for them to leave the enemy and start killing one another? It could only have been God.

In the battles of life, pray and praise! Jehoshaphat did both but many people only pray; some do neither. 2 Chronicles 20:3-4 says, “And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. So Judah gathered together to ask help from the LORD; and from all the cities of Judah they came to seek the LORD” (New King James Version). It was after Jehoshaphat had led the people in prayer and fasting (verses 3-13) that Jahaziel prophesied, assuring Jehoshaphat of victory and disclosing the location of the enemy.

He said, Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, King Jehoshaphat! Thus says the LORD to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s” (verse 15 New King James Version). He continued in verse 17, “You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the LORD, who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem!’ Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the LORD is with you” (New King James Version).

Praise is a weapon of warfare. You may have prayed but have you praised God? God has, in His Word, already promised you victory. Everyone born of God overcomes the world; this is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith (1 John 5:4). Praise God because of the great and precious promises He has given you. “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires” (2 Peter 1:3-4 New International Version).

Be intentional about praising or thanking God, especially when you are in distress or trouble. To the natural man, this is an unreasonable thing to do. It is natural to be anxious, lament, grumble, and weep. It is unnatural to sing praises to God when you are fighting life’s battle. Praise or thank God for what? It is both strange and counter-cultural. But Jehoshaphat told his people to praise the LORD for His mercy endures forever. They did so and God gave them victory without Judah firing a shot at the enemy, as He has promised.

Use the weapon of praise when you’re in the battle of life. Praise or thank God. Not for the warfare, trouble, or distress but despite it. Praise God for who He is. Praise Him because He is greater than your trouble, bigger than your distress, and stronger than your enemy. “Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand, to execute vengeance on the nations, and punishments on the peoples; to bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron; to execute on them the written judgment-This honor have all His saints. Praise the LORD!” (Psalm 149:6-9 New King James Version).

Jehoshaphat appointed those who should sing to the LORD and praise the beauty of holiness. In other words, they sang praises to God. The Bible says to sing praises to God (Psalms 9:11; 47:6; 68:4). Psalm 135:3 says, “Praise the LORD, for the LORD is good; sing praises to His name, for it is pleasant” (New King James Version). Similarly, Psalm 147:1 says, “Praise the LORD! For it is good to sing praises to our God; for it is pleasant, and praise is beautiful” (New King James Version). Sing praises to God.“But I will declare for ever; I will sing praises to the God of Jacob” (Psalm 75:9 New King James Version).

1 Thessalonians 5:18 says to give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Paul and Silas were unjustly imprisoned after being flogged. But they were not bitter. Acts 16:25-26 says, “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose” (New International Version). 

As you fight the battles of life, don’t neglect the weapon of praise even as you pray. Give thanks to God. Bless the Lord at all times and let His praise be continually in your mouth (Psalm 34:1).

TAKE ACTION!

If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.

Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself.  I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.

I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.

PRAYER POINTS: Father, thank You for fighting my battles for me. Thank You, for, in my current battle, You will not deliver me to the will of my enemies. I praise You as You cause confusion in the camp of my enemies and make them self-destruct. Father, I will bless You at all times and Your praise shall continually be in my mouth.

(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).

T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
WhatsApp No: +2349081295947
Email: cedarministryintl@yahoo.com,
cedarministryng@gmail.com
Website: www.cedarministry.org