Remembering What God Has Done
Not only did Jehoshaphat recognize he was calling upon God Almighty, he also remembered what God did for him and the nation of Israel in times past. That is the second step to personal victory: Remember what God has done for you in times past.
Art not thou our God, who didst drive out the inhabitants of this land before thy people Israel, and gavest it to the seed of Abraham thy friend for ever? (2 Chronicles 20:7)
It is important that you know how God delivered in the past. It strengthens your faith to know God has always delivered His people from every physical and spiritual affliction into which they have fallen.
Of equal importance is the knowledge of your personal relationship with God. Jehoshaphat recited the historical evidence that God was with Israel in the past; but now, he declares that God’s power and presence are not only past tense. God not only was, but always is the God of the present, the now, the immediate. God is “a very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1).
One of the greatest truths ever written in the Bible is in the 23rd Psalm where King David began by declaring, “The Lord is my Shepherd.” Here we have the personal application that God is not only God of the present moment, but He is “my shepherd” — not just any shepherd, but a personal God.
Jehoshaphat found the secret of knowing God in a personal way. The historical connection was not good enough. Your mother, father, grandfather, grandmother, sister, or brother can know the Lord, but that is not good enough for you. You could be the great-great grandson of Martin Luther or John Wesley, but that doesn’t really do you any good in your hour of need unless you can address God as your very own.
Repeatedly in Scripture, God declares His personal relationship with us. In Isaiah, we hear this great promise of the Lord to his people. “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee; when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour” (Isaiah 43:2-3).
Note the personal application here: “I will be with thee” — not a messenger; not someone appointed, either heavenly or earthly; but God personally will be right there in the midst of your problem to deliver you. God will deliver you in the times of trouble. The fires may rage, but if you keep your trust in God, you will never be burned. The waters may rise all around you, but God will be right there to see that they never overcome you. You will not drown.
Make this declaration:
When I pass through the waters, He will be with me; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow me; when I walk through the fire, I will not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon me. For God is my God, the Holy One of Israel, my Savior.