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September 10, 2020 8:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ see when you think God before we want to say no. I want to thank him after I get what I want. I think the Lord would say anyone would do that for my child to know.
Just relax and know that I am God. If I know that he is God and I know that he promises to be my refuge and my strength that I know that he says I will be exalted through this that I know I can thank him now joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie doing pastoral Gebhardt now is once again he shows us how God's word meets our world the dark days of your life.
You can only relax you have a really good example that you see somebody else do this. That's what I was sure this morning when you hold your place of home 46 and go with me to second Chronicles chapter 22nd Chronicles, few pages of your life. Second Chronicles chapter 20 and Hold Your Pl., Psalm 46. An example the use of the young king's names. Jehoshaphat is something special was a king of Judah in the first two verses, you get an idea what a dark day. Looks like if you're the king of Judah. The first two verses it reads like this. It came about that. After this, the sons of Moab, and the sons of Ammon, together with some of them unites came to make war against Jehoshaphat and then some came reported Jehoshaphat saying a great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea out of Obama, and behold it says they are in Hazel's on tomorrow that is in getting three different nations, all of them. By the way, with larger standing armies and Judah may cite here form the Confederacy and now they are going to attack Judah now with your king. That's a dark day and by the way, sometimes dark days happen to kings, especially of the northern kingdom of Israel, because they were lousy kings and God was getting.
That's not the case here at all.
In fact if you look and read in verse 31 and 32 of the same chapter, especially verse 32, only example concerning Jehoshaphat.
It said this, he walked in the way of his father, Asa, and did not depart from it doing right in the sight of the Lord refined up in verse 31 that he was 35 years old when he became king and he reigned for 25 years is a good man, dark days happen to God's choices service seat. Everybody gets dark days everybody knows who sometimes obeys a guard because a disappointing hand of the Lord, but sometimes a days are dark because we live as fallen people in a fallen world. Jehoshaphat is a good man but he has a dark day and notice his first initial responses exactly the same as yours and mine. In verse three he said Jehoshaphat was afraid is free. You know that the oncologist is shaking his head as he looked across the desk you that I have some bad news. You know that fear gripped her heart, you get the pink slip fear get a dear John letter fear when dark days come. There is fear the natural first response, but it's only an initial response because jobs if I was afraid it says and then he turned his attention to seek the Lord so we didn't have that very long, but that was the very first one. Why can he stay fearful because he knew something she Jehoshaphat knew something if you can relax in the dark days of your life you need to know something you know something turned back to Psalm 46. Now let's look at what he might've known Psalm 46 verse one God is our refuge and strength, the first thing the Jehoshaphat knew his God is willing to spend his protection and his power on us. God is willing to spend his protection and his power on us as the psalmist says God is our refuge. Notice that's the protection and our strength. That's the power is not new Jehoshaphat. In fact, every servant of God had the same idea. The apostle Paul understood that I can do all things, whom strengthens me.
Also, God is dedicated to be with us in the dark days, a very present help in time to trouble is not only my refuge and my strength, my protection of my power breeze also says maybe right there that's so important to the psalmist liver seven the Lord of hosts is with us. The God of Jacob is your stronghold. Verse 11 the Lord of hosts is with us. The God of Jacob is our stronghold three times the same idea is with us is my security and he's going to be there in the New Testament the Lord said, concerning all of us. I'll never leave you nor forsake you. I will walk out. I'm here even in the darkest days of the apostle Paul in second grade beams 12. He has a lot of dark days back. He is a dark decade, but during one of those dark days.
He has this thorn in the flesh, and it's giving them so much trouble. He entreats the Lord three times for the removal of his life and God finally talks to Paul. He lets Paul know that it's not gonna be removed and then he said something to Paul because Paul greater assurance about his presence in his life as he goes through the dark days. He says all my grace is sufficient. In other words, I will protect you. I will empower you. My grace is sufficient to get you through notice even promised Paul that the dark days when he just promised Paul to be with them as he goes through the dark days. Think of someone in the Old Testament like Joseph righteous young man. His brothers hate his guts. So, his brother Stroman Pitner to leave him to die, then it is I will not is not do that.
Let someone so they sell him as a slave to be taken to Egypt so he goes into slavery in Egypt. He's in prison you get out of prison and he gets a job in a sense, for work and some like Potiphar, Potiphar's wife keeps trying to seduce him now. Out of respect for God and respect for Bodiford.
Joseph wants nothing to do with her.
She then makes false accusations, the Joseph guess where he ends up back in prison. Now imagine so far he's done nothing wrong.
He's hated by his brothers.
He sold as a slave. He's in prison out of prison in prison. Those are dark days when you read the narrative literature in Genesis 3 different times in that narrative you read this, the Lord was with Joseph. The Lord was with Joseph. See, the Lord was with him. That's what God said on their no matter how dark your day is on their all right with you.
Think about this.
Think of the 23rd Psalm a song we all love, even though I go to the Valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil. Why you're with me.
She that's the point.
That's one of the things that he knew he knew that God was willing to spend his protection of this power on and he also knew that God promised to be with him or something else though if you go to 4610. Again, he says cease driving and know that I am God your something else we need to know I will be exalted among the nations, and I will be exalted in the earth while God will be exalted even in our dark days.
In fact way I understand Scripture. He is most exalted. As we respond to him and are dark days. It sounds a lot like Romans 828. All things can work together for the good. You see, that's what he tells us the question we often have is one of the exalted when when he decides.
Sometimes he's not exalted to the very end. Sometimes he's exalted somewhere down the line, but often he's exalted right in the middle of the darkest of days is one of the important things that I understand about my God. Is this you will never waste my struggle. He will not waste my struggle is very important to him. He will be exalted even in the midst of the dark days. Many illustrators go back a second Chronicles 20 again and notice what happens in this scenario. In verse 15 to has EL the son of Zachariah prophet stands up and this is what he says in verse 15 he said listen all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and King Jehoshaphat, he says, thus says the Lord, to you and to us. Do not fear or be dismayed. Because of this great multitude for the battle was not yours but God's. Notice what the prophet says the battle is not yours. It's God's see that makes a lot of sense. Especially if you're being overwhelmed by Jehoshaphat. I mean, no matter how he looks at the strategy there's not much you can do about each one of those armies are probably superior to his all three of them together.
He has no chance. A lot of times that's waiters are dark days when our own.
We can do this that Jesus set apart for me you can do nothing. Life is overwhelming.
Apart from Christ I I have been feeling for you who don't know Christ because I can tell you that you go through dark days and are gonna be on your own and your not sufficient Ford. But here Jehoshaphat is told that the battle is the Lord's see, he knows this the way you relax as you go through dark days need to know something and I know he knows you. So how you know he knows well watch what happens.
Look at verse 18 Jehoshaphat bowed his head with his face to the ground and all Judah and the inhabitant of Jerusalem fell down before the Lord worshiping the Lord the Levites from the son of the kilobytes and the sons of the court fights.
He said stood up to praise the Lord God of Israel with a very loud voice.
Notice that there is darkness of dark can be Jehoshaphat takes what he knows about God and what does he do worships. Let me ask you something if you been in dark days.
Did you worship sees that upfront you I'm worshiping you see what we want to do is often is this Lord just get me through these dark days and then I'm going to worship you know that all really. While be grateful and I'll thank you and thank you so much a mental worship you right now I just rather be afraid full of anxiety draws offensive no I know something I know the Lord and I know it's his battle I can worship him now and that's exactly what he does. What a great example is even more to it than that. Notice what else he does in verse 20.
They rose early in the morning and they went out to the wilderness of Toccoa and when they when Jehoshaphat stood up and said listen to me all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem put your trust in the Lord your God and you will be established. Put your trust in us profits and succeed in what he and consult with the people he appointed those who sang to the Lord and those who praise him in the holy attire as they went out before the Army and said give thanks to the Lord for his lovingkindness is everlasting.
How I know we know, notice what he does. They go out to meet these three armies and normally when Judah went out to do battle. They put the tribe of Benjamin in front the Benjamite of the best warriors that's what you put in front Jehoshaphat put in front the praise team that's we put in fact, it puts the singers in front. He says you to start singing and praising God from the front.
Just imagine if you're one of the other generals watching this on the approach the singing in the front bunch of guys and funny outfits you see.
That's how relaxed he was about this. Give thanks to the Lord for his lovingkindness is everlasting. You know something you see when you know something. Here's what happens in respond rightly in dark days the Thanksgiving is frontloaded yes and face the enemy and there still three armies out there is a list I can now you see real worship thanks God before, not just after telling me the book of Philippians chapter 4 in the New Testament Even Colder Pl. in Chronicles Philippians chapter 4 verse we've often looked up, but I want to look at it again. In this context. In verse six, the apostle Paul says this be anxious for nothing.
Be anxious for nothing. Now can I paraphrase, that relax about what anything everything relax. Just relax, we still cease driving the charms down. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything with prayer and supplication notice pray to God, pour out your heart. Then he says, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. Where's the Thanksgiving before your request. See, when you think God before we want to signal that I want to think after I get what I want. I think the Lord would say anyone would do that to my child, you are no better.
Just relax and know that I am God. If I know that he is God and I know that he promises to be my refuge and my strength that I know that he says I will be exalted through this that I know I can thank him now right in the darkness of the day. I can think of now. Now notice what happens to me or you if you thank him frontloaded verse seven and the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. How you put the singers in front of your army peace. When that seems crazy.
Yeah that's beyond your comprehension. You see, how do you say even if he slays me. I would trust him. That's peace was at that make any sense. Yes, it's beyond your comprehension. You see, we as believers in Jesus Christ. We are supposed to be the sore thumbs of the world. We should stick out like sore thumbs all of us in one way that we can versus anyone who doesn't know God is this, we can thank God in the front end. We can have a piece of the never understand. See that's what happens, we can relax because we know something we know that he is there to protect the sees we know that he's there to empower so we know that you'll be exalted. See, how do you get through the dark days you need to know something. You need a good example and you need to do something turn back to Chronicles no. There's one other thing Jehoshaphat did verse five Jehoshaphat stood up. The assembly of Judah and Jerusalem the house of the Lord before the new court and he said, with 32 praise.
What's this prayer oh Lord, please help us is armies are so big words will all end up dying in whenever you get out here. I will be getting anymore whenever does a really good that's the way we pray in a dark day. He says the Lord God of our fathers, are you not the God in the heavens. Are you not Lord of all the kingdoms of the nations power and minoring your hand in the. No one can stand against you is a did you not. He said our Lord God drive out the inhabitants of this land before your people Israel and given to the descendents of Abraham. Your friend forever. They have lived and have built you a sanctuary there for your name saying so you will come upon us disorder judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house and before you for your name is in this house and cry out to you in our distress and you will hear and deliver us now behold, he says, the sons of Amnon Moab, and Moab, and Mark Siri says you did not let Israel invade when they came out of the land of Egypt, they turned aside from them and did not destroy them.
See all the rewarding us by coming to drive us out from your possession. He said what you have given us as an inheritance. He said, oh Lord God, we do not judge them for we are powerless before this great multitude are coming against us, nor do we know what to do, but her eyes on you and all Judah was standing before the Lord with their infants, their wives and their children pray to. Paul said pray with all prayer and supplication. But notice the prayer he doesn't even get to the petition took quite a bit later it's praise God don't remember who you are. I know you are. You're the only God. You see, you are the God who delivered us from Egypt.I know what you've done.
I've read your resume. I just want to thank you describe praise you for being you and oh by the way women to be overwhelmed with you and help you see pray in order to get through the dark as you like. By relaxing, you need to know something. You need a good example to follow.
Need to do something. Notice what he did.
He prayed, he worshiped and then of course one thing I do want to look in verse 20. It says they arose early in the morning and they went out, he obeyed it and lay in bed with a pullovers head and disabled listeners. Let God handle all this while he went right up there with the face often are darkness, whatever we can do. We should do.
But the truth of the matter is it's God's battle so every life, including yours will have dark days. Everyone the only question is to be filled with fear and anxiety when your dark day comes or you're in a dark day. No or you can relax series and relax because you can use. You can relax.
If you know something and you do something Jehoshaphat gives us even a good example to follow. Sometime ago I was watching the Discovery Channel and up. There were some people about 10 or 12. I'm going go white water rafting. I'm always a different analogy, but here's something for you life is a white water raft trip. That's life is to seek what I learned in that program was that the rapids themselves are rated from 1 to 61 being a small since 6 PM. Am I crazy or what type of thing will these these apparent someone America's Western Canada.
These were 2 to 3 the range on these and it was beginner to things and typical of people is a beautiful sunny day and everybody sort of walking around laughing mugging for the cameras can't, we can open it be good to break it on all that has to everybody gets in and make they start in on everybody's service my lap and in the currents picking up at the end of the lab and everybody is having fun and then they come to the rapids and get cameras in her another's no one-everybody's ashen white cleaning long like that with everybody has this unbelievable facial expression shared tear someone got the guide. He's in the back completely relaxed completely. Now they made it through. As he never doubted he never doubted and then when I got out, then a course like us at the other side of the dark day what about something that was really great. You know during the dark day nothing but sheer terror. You see, that's where life is some of you will go to go through number one rapids exit to some of you have been or going through number six and frightening but not tour guide you see when you're going through the rapids of life. Don't forget to in the back of the raft.
Don't forget, who's back there because if you know who that is and makes all the difference in the world because when you look at him. I tell you one thing he smiling is relaxed. You know why he's been there before.
He knows exactly what to do. The spring father dark days is a reality that none of us really like to have in our lives, but all of us know that we will experience father. I just pray that as many of us as possible can take Psalm 4610.
Relax, know that you are God that you are a God of protection and power. You are a God that will be exalted in and of every circumstance of our life and father's we will do something we will pray we will worship we will thank you and we will experience a piece beyond all comprehension. Father, thank you for the example Jehoshaphat, a man who faced his own dark days and did it in such a fashion that is a perfect model for us.
Father, I think you the God who you are, for the ability to take the darkest moments in our life turned on the times piece tranquility praying pastor broke your heart on the radio ministry of fellowship Lord, if you ever miss one of our broadcasting or maybe you just like a listen to the message one more time. Remember, you can Google a great website called one place.com that's one place.com and you can listen the fellowship and the word online that website you will find on today's broadcast but also many of our previous audio programs as well Fellowship in the Word. We are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible.
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