Healing of a Nation
There is nothing better in July than the fourth. It is foundational to us. It is our heritage and it deserves nothing less than our gratitude to our forefathers and those who came after who have done all in their power to keep us safe and free. But we seem to forget the most important part to this equation, and that is God. It was our heavenly Father who gave birth to this nation and during its years of infancy, it was God who protected it and watched it grow. It was God who brought this country through every storm and every trial and tribulation. It was God our Father who lovingly blessed us and prospered us. He gently took our servicemen and women into His arms and received them when they fell in battle. He saw, and He who is a mighty warrior Himself rose up and gave us the victory.
Yes, we forgot the One who birthed us. We removed His name from the public square. We removed His commandments and we turned from His ways and mocked Him in our theater and entertainment. We shook our fists and we said defiantly in His face that WE and not Him will rebuild after 9/11, and not only that, but we said that we would rebuild even higher and better and stronger, never saying, "with God's help." And where did we find ourselves? In two wars, and even at that when we pulled out we had to return because we lost what we had gained. Fifteen years of wars and not peace. We had years without prosperity. We had a nation so divided and our streets have become war zones. God's word tells us in 2 Chronicles 7:14, "And if My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land."
I want to look at this passage closer, for I say the answer is right here to America's problems.
It's Up to God's People
This passage in Chronicles took place when Solomon dedicated the first Temple. The passage goes on to say in verses 15-16, "Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to the prayer offered in this place. For now I have chosen and consecrated this house that My name may be there forever, and My eyes and My heart will be there perpetually." So what does this have to do with us? Well, we have our foundational Scriptures to show us exactly how God deals with His people. God tells Israel if they would humble themselves and pray and seek His face and turn from their wicked ways that He would hear their prayers and forgive them and heal their land. We who have been grafted into Israel (Romans 11:17) through the death and resurrection of Messiah also have this same promise. Our churches represent the place where God resides, the heavenly temple—at least it should, in the respect that it should be holy and sacred. But today our churches show no respect to God. We sit during the worship service and look at our phones. We drink coffee and we do not enter into worship, as if God is so common. Isaiah 6:1-5 tells us, "In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said: ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!' And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. And I said: ‘Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!'"
Revelation 4 tells us, "After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, ‘Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.' At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and ruby. A rainbow that shone like an emerald encircled the throne. Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God. Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying: ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.' Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say: ‘You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.'"
This is a picture of the temple in heaven and we must always remember that we also are the temple of the Holy Spirit, and we should be holy for He is holy, and to be holy means that we should be keeping God's commandments. We should be praying and seeking His face. God opposes the proud but He draws close to those who are humble (James 4:6) and contrite of heart (Psalm 51:17).
So if the people of God, Jew and Gentile alike, would humble themselves and pray and seek God's face, and if we would turn from our wickedness (YES this is to the people of God), He would hear our prayers and forgive us our sins and heal our country. We too are guilty of being like the world. Today there is no difference between a believer or a Jew and the world, Orthodox exempted. We are to be light to the nations. We are to be sowers of the seed of God's Word.
Now you may say that this is all wrong and we are not guilty, and to that I say, then our land would be healed and we would not be so divided and our streets would not be war zones. God's word is truth and it sheds its light, and we as a body of believers have to come back to living by God's Word. When we do, we will see a mighty revival in the land and America will be healed.
Let's take the advice of Psalm 81:
"Sing for joy to God our strength, shout aloud to the God of Jacob! Begin the music, strike the timbrel, play the melodious harp and lyre. Sound the ram's horn at the New Moon, and when the moon is full, on the day of our festival; this is a decree for Israel, an ordinance of the God of Jacob. When God went out against Egypt, He established it as a statute for Joseph. I heard an unknown voice say: ‘I removed the burden from their shoulders; their hands were set free from the basket. In your distress you called and I rescued you, I answered you out of a thundercloud; I tested you at the waters of Meribah. Hear me, my people, and I will warn you— if you would only listen to me, Israel! You shall have no foreign god among you; you shall not worship any god other than me. I am the Lord your God, who brought you up out of Egypt. Open wide your mouth and I will fill it. But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me. So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices. If my people would only listen to me, if Israel would only follow my ways, how quickly I would subdue their enemies and turn my hand against their foes! Those who hate the Lord would cringe before him, and their punishment would last forever. But you would be fed with the finest of wheat; with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.'"
As we celebrate our independence from England, let's thank God who blessed this nation with abundance. Can we now turn from His commandments and His ways? Let's humble ourselves in prayer and seek the God who has given us this great land.