Whenever I read the Bible, I sometimes catch myself zooming in on one word or phrase and can’t move forward.
Today, I read 2 Chronicles 13 and the phrase that stopped me in the middle was this: “the battle cry,” on verse 15.
First, I wrestled with the phrase for a few minutes but the only thing I was able to come up with was the literal meaning of the words, battle and cry. But the literal meaning of those words didn’t sync or flow with the context of the chapter.
Abijah is the King of Judah and Jeroboam is the King of Israel.
Abijah is the grandson of King Solomon or great grandson of King David. Jeroboam, on the other hand, is not from David’s descendants. Jeroboam used to be “an official of” King Solomon but later he rebelled against his master and fled to Egypt. When the opportunities presented themselves, he came back to Israel from Egypt and took Israel from Rehoboam (son of Solomon) and Israel got split into two nations, south and north, or Judah and Israel.
So, here, in chapter 13, the war is between Abijah and Jereboam, between the people of Judah and Israel. God is not with Israel because Jereboam rejected God and worshiped idols, so did the people of Israel. It was the opposite with Abijah and Judah. They obeyed God and followed all His commandments.
Now when Judah and Israel come face to face to fight, Jereboam surprised Judah by sending ambush behind them. Then we read: “Judah turned and saw that they were being attacked at both front and rear. Then they cried out to the Lord. The priests blew their trumpets and the men of Judah raised the battle cry. At the sound of their battle cry, God routed Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah.” Verse 14-15
Notice the phrase “raised the battle cry” and “at the sound of their battle cry” –
So, let me share with you what I found from “inspiration.org”:
“In Psalms, we may think of shouting joyfully as being similar to a polite worship service. But, in fact, the Bible describes something more like a battle cry. It should have the same kind of intensity associated with going to war. It means praising God with the kind of boisterous confidence the Israelites had as they marched around Jericho.”
Did you read that?
“Battle cry” means then, when we march out to meet our enemy, our weapon to crash our enemy is our shout of praise to our God and LORD, a kind of praise that shows our “boisterous confidence” in the attributes of our God and Savior and declaring His power and mighty.
I couldn’t find one word in English that described “the battle cry” in a way I wanted to but I found one word in Amharic, in my opinion, that best described “the battle cry.” That word is, “ፉከራ” and Google translated this Amharic word into “competition” and that is wrong (I mean, correct me if I am wrong but “ፉከራ” is not competition).
Anyways, “the battle cry” is something we Christians need to know about and practice. It was a biblical mandate given to the people of God in Numbers 10:9 and we find it being practiced by the people of God throughout the Bible (such as. when the Israelites marched around Jericho – Joshua 6).
I think David used “the battle cry” when he approached the enemy of God’s people, Goliath:
“You [Goliath] come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hands, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.” 1 Samuel 17:45-47
“ፉከራ” is declaring the power and strength of God to save those who trust in Him. It is like, telling our enemy who God is, declaring His mighty name – our God who is worthy to receive all our praise and worship!
However, notice here, “ፉከራ” doesn’t mean, “saying nice words about God.” No, it is not. Our battle cry has to be biblical, knowing and declaring the character and attributes of God according to the word of God. It is the word of God that can accurately describes God and it is the word of God our enemy cannot stand against because it is the Sword of the Spirit.
Amazing, isn’t it!
I first thought “a battle cry” means crying before God saying, “Why did you leave me here? My enemy is going to swallow me alive! I am dying! Come fast please!”
No! That is not a battle cry. That is a cry of “a baby Christian” who has no clue about the God of the Bible.
If you forget everything I said here, remember 2 Chronicles 13 verse 15: “and the men of Judah raised the battle cry. At the sound of their battle cry, God routed Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah.”
– At the sound of their battle cry, God routed their enemies! Praise God!
Let me close this post with the closing paragraph of the note I found on: inspiration.org/daily-devotion/a-war-cry/
“Today, put these instructions from the Bible into practice in your life. Shout joyfully to the Lord. As you go into the battles of life, be confident and bold. God is on your side, and the victory already is won.” ///