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Fasting Day 7: “Worship While You Fast” by Jentezen Franklin

Worship While You Fast

When the armies of Ammon and Moab were invading Judah, Jehoshaphat was outnumbered and afraid. He prayed and proclaimed a fast.

When it was time for battle, he put singers out in front of the army to praise and worship God as they went to war. When they started praising, the enemy turned on one another, and God gave Jehoshaphat an astounding victory. God can do the same thing for you today!

Worship While You Fast by Jentezen Franklin

Highlights

There are:

  • Ten chapters in the Bible that relate to Abraham,
  • Eleven that relate to Jacob, and
  • Ten devoted to Elijah and Elisha.

But there are sixty-six chapters that related to the life of David. Over 1,200 references to his name are found in the Bible. Fifty-nine times David is mentioned in the New Testament.

The most prominent Old Testament character mentioned over 1,200 times was a man of worship. There is a reason why God kept talking about David over and over. It’s because David loved the presence of the Lord.

Israel grew and prospered under King David more than any other time in its history because David was a worshipper.

1. Evangelism Comes from Worship

People get saved when God’s people worship. One example is the woman at the well. When Jesus talked to this lost woman, of all the things He could have said to her, He talked to her about worship.

“But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him” (John 4:23).

The woman got set on fire spiritually! She ran back and brought the whole city to Jesus … and it all began with a conversation about worship.

2. God Abides Where His People Worship

David brought Ark of the Covenant and set it in the tabernacle. He loved God’s presence, so he rolled up the tabernacle curtains. Up until that time, most people had been banned from coming near of the Ark of the Covenant. But rolling the curtains up meant that average people who had never had the opportunity could come into God’s presence.

The Ark of the Covenant had something called the Mercy Seat. It was God’s seat on earth.

Psalm 22:3 says, “God inhabits the praise of His people.” There is an interpretation of this verse that says:

“Whenever people worship, God brings His big chair and sits down.”
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God gets comfortable when His people worship Him. Don’t you want God to get comfortable and bring His big chair where you are?

The seat is called the Mercy Seat. Do you know why you get answers to prayer? It’s not because you fast. It’s the mercy of God.

God said, “The way you get my big mercy in the middle of your blessing and your prayers is that when you worship me, you create a seat, and I come down and sit in it.”

Give God a seat in your house! Give him a seat in your business! The more you praise him the bigger that chair gets!

3. We Need Continual Worship Because Satan’s Opposition is Continual

David had 274 musicians surrounding the Ark of the Covenant. In four different shifts, twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year, for thirty-three years, they played nonstop, worshipping God.

Revelation 12:10 says that Satan accuses us before God day and night. In the book of Job it says that Satan went in before God and accused Job.

Twenty-four hours a day there is a demon accusing you before the throne of God. The devil knows how to get into God’s presence. And if the devil is going to be there accusing, don’t you want to be there praising—praising God that everything the devil is accusing you of is covered by the blood of Jesus?!

If the devil is persistent enough to accuse day and night, I’d hate to think the devil is willing to go through more to get into the presence to accuse us than we’re willing to do to get into God’s presence to praise.

The devil doesn’t let anything hinder him from getting into God’s presence to accuse us. Don’t let anything hinder you from getting into God’s presence to worship!

In eastern North Carolina, there is a big military base out of which a lot of military aircraft operate. The base is next to an interstate highway. On the interstate, the military has a big billboard sign that says:

Pardon all the noise. It’s the sound of freedom.

Pardon all the noise, our worship is the sound of freedom! There ought to be a sound of freedom in our lives! He whom the sons sets free is free indeed! Where the spirit of the Lord is there is liberty. The sound of praise is the sound of freedom! Praise Him, and He’ll get a chair, the Mercy Seat, and pull it up to your table!

4. When Praise Starts Breaking Out in the Battle, We Get Breakthroughs (Tweet this)

When Jehoshaphat fasted for three days, God said, “Quit worrying and go to praising! This battle is not yours but mine!”

So they put singers out on the front line. They went ahead of the army singing:

“Praise the Lord,
For His mercy endures forever.”

They had just come out of a fast. There is a connection between fasting and praising. They came out singing! And when they did, the enemy turned on one another and devoured each other. There was so much plunder, it took Judah three days to pick it up.

5. Worship Isn’t Just for Times When we Feel Like It

[I have heard this sermon several times on podcast and watched it several times on video . . . and I still laugh outloud every time Jentezen gets to this section. It’s entertaining, yes! But he makes two powerful, must-hear points!]

6. You Have Battles to Fight and Only One Bullet—the Bullet of Worship

[As with all of Jentezen’s sermons, this message is full of eye-opening, convicting truth and is delivered through the power of the Holy Spirit. Out of the whole, power-packed message, this was the most convicting section for me personally.]

Jentezen describes the journey when David got the Ark of the Covenant and started bringing it back. It was six miles from Obed-Edom, where the Ark of the Covenant was, to the tabernacle David had built.

A pace is two feet, two inches. Every six paces David would stop. So the journey went like this:

Step one . . . two . . . three . . . four . . . five . . . six.

“Hold it!” David would shout. Everyone would stop.

David would build an altar. Take an oxen. Cut it, dress it, and lay it on the altar. He would take a lamb, cut it, dress it, and lay it on the altar. Then burn it up, worship God, and send up incense.

As soon as that was finished, he’d shout: “Pick it up! Move forward.”

One . . . two . . . three . . . four . . . five . . . six steps.

“Hold it!” Build an altar. Kill another oxen. Dress it. Lay it on the altar. Take a lamb, etc. . . .

For six miles David did this. There were:

  • 2,437 stops over six miles
  • 406 stops per mile
  • 2437 oxen slain
  • 2437 calves slain
  • If it took 30 minutes to prepare for the ritual sacrifice, that’s 1,259 hours or 52 days to make a six mile journey.
  • Add eight hours of sleep, and three hours to eat a day. That’s 630 more hours. That’s another 26 more days to cover six miles.
  • It took David 78 days just to move the ark a distance of six miles.

David was king. He had a lot of important things he needed to do. There were lots of people he needed to meet with. He was running a whole nation. But he said, “There’s nothing more important than entertaining the presence of God. I must have his presence in my kingdom.” So he worshiped for 78 days.

David understood that he had some battles to fight, and he had only one bullet: the bullet of worship.

Tweetables

  • “God inhabits the praise of His people.” ~ Ps.22:3 | Whenever people worship, God brings His big chair & sits down. > Tweet
  • When praise breaks out in the battle, we get breakthroughs! ~ Jentezen Franklin > Tweet

Questions:

  • Is there someone you’re praying for that you want to see come to the Lord? How could worship affect your evangelism to them?
  • How do you plan to worship God and create a seat for Him, so that you invite Him and His mercy into your need—into your causes for fasting? 
  • What do you allow to discourage you from worshipping? What are some ways you can worship whether you feel like it or not?
  • How do you plan to prioritize worship—so that no matter the inconvenience, no matter how many other important things you need to be doing, above all you will give God the worship He deserves?

FROM THE ARCHIVES:

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