King Jehoshaphat: The Obedience of Faith and the Blessing of God

I. King Jehoshaphat’s Works of Faith

a. His military preparations & strength (17:1-2, 12-19)
b. His religious/spiritual leadership of the nation (17:7-9; 19:4-11; ch.20)
c. His heart after God (17:3-6; cf. 20:3-4 he “set his face to seek the Lord”)

What does it mean, “to seek the Lord”?

II. The Blessings of God on Jehoshaphat and the Nation of Judah

III. Prayer, Prudence, and Trust in God’s Providence

“Prayer assumes the sovereignty of God. If God is not sovereign, we have no assurance that He is able to answer our prayers. Our prayers would become nothing more than wishes… God’s sovereignty…is the foundation of our trust in Him, [and] prayer is the expression of that trust.”—Jerry Bridges, Trusting God (107)

“Just as God’s sovereignty does not set aside our responsibility to pray, it also does not negate our responsibility to act prudently. To act prudently, in this context, means to use all legitimate, biblical means at our disposal to avoid harm to ourselves or others and to bring about what we believe to be the right course of events… Prayer is the acknowledgement of God’s sovereignty and our dependence upon Him to act on our behalf. Prudence is the acknowledgement of our responsibility to use all legitimate means. We must not separate these two.”—Jerry Bridges, Trusting God (108, 111)


“We must depend on God to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. We must, to the same degree, depend on Him to enable us to do what we must do ourselves. The farmer must use all of his skills, experience, and resources to produce a harvest. Yet he is utterly dependent upon forces outside of himself. Those forces of nature – moisture, insects, sun… [are] under the direct sovereign control of God. The farmer is dependent upon God to control nature so that his crop will grow. But he is just as dependent upon God to enable him to plow, plant, fertilize, and cultivate properly. From where did he get his skills, his ability to learn from his experience, the financial resources to buy the equipment and fertilizer he uses? Where does even his physical strength to do his tasks come from? Are not all these things from the hand of God who ‘gives all men life and breath and everything else’ (Acts 17:25)? In every respect, we are utterly dependent upon God.”—Jerry Bridges, Trusting God (112-13)

“You may think that you can simply hone your talents and increase your energy so that your life will prosper. But just a little hiccup in the economy, just a mistaken entry in a ledger, just a brief change of circumstances – a car crosses a center line for a fraction of a second, you breathe in a microscopic virus, your child takes a wrong step – and life as you know it comes unraveled more quickly and deeply than you ever believed was possible.”—Bryan Chapell, Grace at Work (191)