Thus Solomon finished the house of the LORD and the king's palace, and successfully completed all that he had planned on doing in the house of the LORD and in his palace. Then the LORD appeared to Solomon at night and said to him, "I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice. "If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locust to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among My people, and 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. (2 Chronicles 7:11-14 NASB)
As a citizen of both heaven and earth, the Christian has civic as well as spiritual obligations.
The Word of God is true and reliable. As we read about how the Lord related to His people in biblical times, we should look for application to our own lives. All too often, Christians allow themselves to think that divine judgment could never happen today. But what does the scriptural record actually show?
Today's passage reveals that judgment could, in fact, befall those God loves. These verses concern "My people"—not some pagan nation—and turning away from the heavenly Father would result in pestilence and drought. But verse 14 also reveals God's plan to rescue a nation under judgment. We believers are to:
1) Humble ourselves. We must acknowledge God's right to rule over us.
2) Pray. This describes heartfelt crying out to the Lord (Psalm 34:17) rather than simply a bringing of requests before Him. We are to pray out of a sense of desperation and helplessness.
3) Seek His face. We are to have a longing in our hearts to know God's will for ourselves as well as for our nation.
4) Turn from our wicked ways. Wickedness encompasses everything that is opposed to God, including immorality and all manner of corruption. If we join hands with the wicked, whether by action or inaction, we ourselves are guilty before God. (James 4:17)
God wants to heal our land, which is ignoring biblical principles and turning to its own ways. He is the only one who is able to protect our nation. Christians, call upon Him!
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