2 Kings 3
” 1 Now Jehoram the son of Ahab became king over Israel at Samaria in the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years. 2 And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, but not like his father and mother; for he put away the sacred pillar of Baal that his father had made. 3 Nevertheless he persisted in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who had made Israel sin; he did not depart from them. 4 Now Mesha king of Moab was a sheepbreeder, and he regularly paid the king of Israel one hundred thousand lambs and the wool of one hundred thousand rams. 5 But it happened, when Ahab died, that the king of Moab rebelled against the king of Israel. 6 So King Jehoram went out of Samaria at that time and mustered all Israel. 7 Then he went and sent to Jehoshaphat king of Judah saying ‘The king of Moab has rebelled against me. Will you go with me to fight against Moab?’ And he said, ‘I will go up; I am as you are, my people as your people, my horses as your horses.’ 8 So he said, ‘Which way shall we go up?’ And he answered, ‘By the way of the wilderness of Edom.’ 9 So the king of Israel went with the king of Judah and the king of Edom, and they marched on that roundabout route seven days; and there was no water for the army, nor for the animals that followed them. 10 And the king of Israel said, ‘Alas! For the Lord has called these three kings together to deliver them into the hand of Moab.’ 11 But Jehoshaphat said, ‘Is there no prophet of the Lord here, that we may inquire of the Lord by him?’ So one of the servants of the king of Israel answered and said, ‘Elisha the son of Shaphat is here, who poured water on the hands of Elijah.’ 12 And Jehoshaphat said, ‘The word of the Lord is with him.’ So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat and the king of Edom went down to him. 13 Then Elisha said to the king of Israel, ‘What have I to do with you? Go to the prophets of your father and the prophets of your mother.’ But the king of Israel said to him, ‘No, for the Lord has called these three kings together to deliver them into the hand of Moab.’ 14 And Elisha said, ‘As the Lord of hosts lives, before whom I stand, surely were it not for the presence of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, I would not look at you, nor see you. 15 ‘But now bring me a musician.’ Then it happened, when the musician played, that the hand of the Lord came upon him. 16 And he said, ‘Thus says the Lord: Make this valley full of ditches.’ 17 ‘For thus says the Lord: You shall not see wind, nor shall you see rain; yet that valley shall be filled with water, so that you, your cattle, and your animals may drink.’ 18 ‘And this is a simple matter in the sight of the Lord; He will also deliver the Moabites into your hand. 19 Also you shall attack every fortified city and every choice city, and shall cut down every good tree, and stop up every spring of water, and ruin every good piece of land with stones.’ 20 Now it happened in the morning when the grain offering was offered, that suddenly water came by way of Edom, and the land was filled with water. 21 And when all the Moabites heard that the kings had come up to fight against them, all who were able to bear arms and older were gathered; and they stood at the border. 22 Then they rose up early in the morning, and the sun was shining on the water; and the Moabites saw the water on the other side as red as blood. 23 And they said, ‘This is blood; the kings have surely struck swords and have killed one another; now therefore, Moab, to the spoil!’ 24 So when they came to the camp of Israel, Israel rose up and attacked the Moabites, so that they fled before them; and they entered their land, killing the Moabites.
I came across this passage a couple weeks ago, and the Lord has pointed out various important principles to me that I would love to share with you. Whether you have a need that is urgent or are battling with tough situations in life, I’m sure that God will through for you. Just dig something!…
Jehoram was an evil king who worshipped idols. Where were they when he needed them? Mesha king of Moab rebelled against him (verse 5), and he didn’t know what to do. He sought the help of Jehoshaphat as a first option instead of seeking the Lord. He then decided that this coalition head the way of Edom to fight against Moab. In doing so, he solicited the help of the king of Edom. This decision eventually led to disaster, in that Edom had no water for the army or its animals (verse 9). Instead of admitting that he had made a mess of things, Jehoram blamed God. At times, people can be like this, making hasty decisions, relying on their own strength and wisdom, then blaming God when it all goes wrong.
It was a good thing that Jehoshaphat the king of Judah was a godly man. He suggested that the coalition seek guidance from the Lord. How different the situation may have been if this was done from the first instance. Even in the worst of times, God’s counsel was available through the prophet Elisha. The Lord in His mercy is always willing to respond to those who seek Him. What does He say through Elisha to these kings? Verse 16 tells us – “Make this valley full of ditches.” Here is a lesson for us in these times, when we are in our ‘valley’, the testing times of life. You see, God wants us to participate in our own miracle by obeying His instructions. For example the Israelites had to walk around the wall of Jericho seven times before it crumbled! The Lord will intervene in the various situations in our lives. However we must be obedient to His word and instruction, for this unleashes our faith and causes God to act on our behalf.
To dig ditches would not be easy. It would take much effort. Maybe at times the soldiers were tempted to think it was a meaningless task. ‘We’re warriors, not farmers!!!’ However they obeyed. What was the result of their obedience? God would would provide water without wind or rain. The valley would be filled in way they couldn’t figure out. The Lord is able to provide all our needs, and in miraculous/unconventional ways. That’s the way He is. His ways are so much higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8-10)! Verse 18 tells us also that God would defeat the Moabites. In effect God reassured Jehoram and his army ‘No big deal, I’ll sort them out too!’
God want us to dig some ditches too, so that He can send a pure flow of healing, delivering, restoring waters into our lives. There are different ditches, which vary from person to person. What has the Lord laid on your heart? Do you need to dig some prayer ditches to get your breakthrough? Maybe some ditches of praise to the Lord? Love? Forgiveness? Patience? Longsuffering? Ditches of humility so He can promote you? Do you need to go deeper in the word? If you are not sure about what ditches to dig, ask the Holy Spirit to show you, for when they are dug, God will surely move. As for me, the Holy Spirit impressed it on me to go deeper in prayer – not only for myself, but for others.
The Israelites obeyed. Then what? Verse 20 tells us that when the grain offering was offered, water appeared from Edom to fill the land. The key here is the grain offering – a type of worship. Worship preceded the move of God. Worship cannot be over-emphasized in its importance. God loves it. God deserves it. God seeks it. Jesus explained this in John 4:23 when He said ‘…true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.’ Actually God inhabits the praises of His people.
After worship took place in the form of a grain offering, God supplied their need. The same place that had no water – Edom – became the source of it. This tells us that God can use what we think is useless to achieve His purposes. This may include people, ideas, situations, experiences. Therefore it is never a good thing to discount these things, especially people.
In the passage we can note that one act of obedience followed by one move of Almighty God solved more than one problem for the Israelites. Verse 22, 23 shows that the same water God used to satisfy the Israelites was the same water He used to ambush their enemies. What a mighty God we serve! He tricked the Moabites, enabling Israel to defeat them. Notice though, even after the miracle, Israel had to fight. At times God will do wonders for us – in empowering us to overcome, but we must still press on in whatever way necessary. You may need to continue praying or being patient or doing good works until the victory is complete.
We see in this passage the love and awesomeness of the Lord. He is able to provide for the needs of those who trust in Him, and help them to triumph in otherwise impossible situations. Do you know Him personally? If not, you can right now, by accepting Jesus Christ into your heart. Just say a prayer to God as this one “Father, I acknowledge I am a sinner. I repent of my sins. Please forgive me. I accept that Jesus died for my sins and ask Him to come into my heart. I accept Your gift of eternal life in Jesus Name, Amen.”