Introduction: Remember King Asa? He cleaned out all the false gods
and even deposed his own grandmother because of her improper worship
of false gods! God gave him a glorious victory against an enemy
force because he trusted in God. At the end of his life, however, he
wandered from the faith of his youth. He seemed to be annoyed with
God because God had rebuked him. The Bible suggests that King Asa
died of a foot ailment — an ailment for which he did not seek God’s
help. This week we turn our study to Jehoshaphat, the son of Asa.
- The New King
- Read 2 Chronicles 17:1-2. What is King Jehoshaphat worried
about? (His brothers to the north, the ten tribes which
- If this were all the information you had available,
would you conclude that Jehoshaphat trusted God?
- Read 2 Chronicles 17:3-4. What kind of King was
Jehoshaphat? (It tells us that he was faithful – at least
in his early years.)
- This idea of falling away in the later years is
something we have seen over and over with these
kings. Should the “over 40 crowd” be worried?
- Verse 3 has a new statement. It says Jehoshaphat does
not “consult” the Baals. What does that suggest about
the other kings who followed Baal? (That they were
getting direction for their life from these false
- Since these gods did not exist, whose guidance
were these kings following? (They were doing
what they wanted to do.)
- Is that an indication of “idol worship”
today – that when all is said and done you
do what you want to do?
- Is that the real danger for the “over 40
crowd?” With experience comes the tendency
to trust yourself?
- Read 2 Chronicles 17:5. What is the result of
Jehoshaphat’s faithfulness to God?
- Would you like this for your life?
- Jehoshaphat and the GoBible Project
- Read 2 Chronicles 17:7-9. What program is Jehoshaphat
instituting in Judah? (This is a GoBible project! He is
promoting Bible teaching and Bible study in the kingdom.)
- Verse 6, that we skipped, tells us that Jehoshaphat,
like the good kings before him, destroyed the idols
of the false gods. He also destroyed the high places.
How is Jehoshaphat different than his good
predecessors? (He is not content to destroy the evil
in the nation, but he actively promotes a greater
knowledge of the true God.)
- What can we learn from this for our own life? Is it
enough to simply seek to eliminate sin in our lives?
Should we also seek to fill the “sin void” with a
greater knowledge of God?
- Read Matthew 12:43-45. What do you think this
little story means? (This is an odd story. The
point, however, seems to be that simply
sweeping clean our minds (kicking the evil out)
is not good enough. We need to fill our minds
with good things. If we do not fill our minds
with the Holy Spirit and the knowledge of God,
evil will return.)
- Have you ever seen this with a new believer? At
first they are almost fanatical about what they
will not do. Then they seem to quickly fall
back into sin. How can we help this kind of new
- Read 2 Chronicles 17:10. We get back to an old theme for
the Kings that followed God. What does Jehoshaphat
experience in his life? (Peace. Friend, when you follow
God you have peace.)
- The Ahab Adventure
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:1-3. What do you think about making
Ahab your ally? What does Solomon teach us about this? (2
Chronicles 21:6 tells us that Jehoshaphat’s son, Jehoram,
married a daughter of Ahab. Jehoram followed in Ahab’s
ways. This sounds like a very bad idea to me. An idea that
caused his son to be lost.)
- Is there a connection between wealth and honor in
your old age and staying from God?
- Why do you think Ahab gave Jehoshaphat such a grand
welcome? (He wanted something from him.)
- What did Ahab want? (He wanted Jehoshaphat to
help him attack Ramoth-Gilead. The Syrians had
taken this city away and Ahab wanted to win it
- Our text tells us that Jehoshaphat was growing richer
and more honored. Was he growing wiser?
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:4. Does this restore your confidence
in King Jehoshaphat?
- Compare the attitude of the young Jehoshaphat in 2
Chronicles 17:1 with his attitude towards the north
now. (The north turns from the enemy to his
- What do you think about Jehoshaphat first promising
to help Ahab and second suggesting they consult God?
Is this the proper order of decision-making?
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:5-6. What is the problem with these
400 prophets? (They are not prophets of God.)
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:7-8. What is wrong with asking a true
prophet, Micaiah, for this opinion? (He never gives Ahab
the answer that he wants!)
- Is this how you are with God? Have you ever said “I
really do not want to find the Bible answer to my
question because I might not like it?”
- Do we reject prophets because we do not like their
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:9-11. What does the guy with horns on
his head say will be the future? Isn’t this the obvious
answer? Four hundred prophets and one guy wearing horns
could not possibly be wrong, right?
- Why do these prophets (v.11) get to talk about what
the “Lord” will be doing? These are not God’s
- What is the lesson here for us? (Evil advice
sometimes gets dressed up as something good.
Just because a prophet says he is speaking for
God does not make it so.)
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:12. What is the strategy that Micaiah
the true prophet should follow? What is on the line for
- What parallel do you see for your work, your life?
(Do your co-workers, your family, say, “Just do what
everyone else is doing. Don’t stick out like a sore
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:13. What is the true prophet’s
answer to this suggestion? (No.)
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:14-15. What kind of answer did the
prophet give? Did the true prophet do exactly the opposite
of what he was supposed to do? Is this what God said? Or,
is he being obviously sarcastic?
- Which “king” is speaking in verse 15? (Jehoshaphat
doesn’t know this prophet. He would not be able to
recount past conversations with him. On the other
hand, this does not sound like something Ahab would
say. Ahab wanted him to lie to him like the other 400
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:16-17. Who is the “master” of Israel?
What do the words of the prophet mean? (Ahab is King of
Israel. This is a prophecy that Ahab will die in the
battle. This is confirmed in vv. 18-19)
- We are going to skip some pretty interesting reading in
the next few verses. After this warning, after consulting
God’s true prophet and getting a negative response, King
Jehoshaphat decides to go into battle with Ahab anyway.
Read 2 Chronicles 18:28-30.
- What do you think about the battle strategy of the
“good guys?”(If you ever thought Jehoshaphat was a
“rocket scientist,” you can disabuse yourself of that
notion right now. Ahab says, “Let’s do this. We’ll
enter battle together. I’ll look like a regular
soldier, and you will have a big fat target painted
on your outfit.” Jehoshaphat responds, “Good idea.”)
- What do you think about the battle strategy of the
“bad guys?” (Sounds smart. Take out the brains of the
opposition. (If only they knew.))
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:31-32. Friend, are you glad to read
this? What is the lesson in this for us? (We do not have
to be smart, but we need to be faithful. Jehoshaphat was
not very faithful here, but God was kind and saved him
- Read 2 Chronicles 18:33-34. When the Bible says, “Someone
drew his bow at random,” it sounds like bad luck. Was it
bad luck for Ahab? (No. The background we read shows this
was not luck.)
- Where do brains and courage get you if you are
unfaithful to God? (Nowhere in the end.)
- The Lesson
- Read 2 Chronicles 19:1-2. What so you think is the answer
to Hanani’s question?
- How does your life answer this question? Do you vote
for the unrighteous? Do you ally yourself with the
- How can God’s wrath be on Jehoshaphat when God just
saved his life?
- This issue about being allied with the unrighteous is
something that constantly bothers me about our
religious liberty work. Our “religious liberty men”
are generally lined up with the “unrighteous” against
- Read 2 Chronicles 20:2-4. What lesson has Jehoshaphat
learned from his last combat experience? (He consults the
- If you have time, read the wonderful prayer of Jehoshaphat
found in verses 5-12. The Holy Spirit gives the people an
answer, let’s read it in 2 Chronicles 20:15-17. Compare
God’s strategy with King Ahab’s strategy? (God says “Just
trust Me, and I will take care of the problem.” Ahab
said, “Why don’t you wear a big bull’s eye on you so we
can beat them?”)
- We read in v.3 that Jehoshaphat was at first
“alarmed.” Why does God tell him in v.17 not to be
afraid? (Because God cares about us and our well-being.)
- 2 Chronicles 20:22 tells us that God defeated the
- Friend, the important life lesson in our study this week
is to “trust and obey” our entire life. If we obey God and
trust in Him (as opposed to ourselves) He will be with us
and lift us up. How would you like to enter this “no
- Next Week: Judah: From Jehoram to Joash.