Monday, March 30, 2009

Has God’s Promise Changed?

NOTE: Enjoy this guest post by Sue Oneal, friend and pastor's wife at Sequatchie Valley Church of the Nazarene in Whitwell, Tennessee.

One of my favorite passages of scripture is 2 Chronicles 7:14:

then if my people will humble themselves and pray, and search for me, and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear them from heaven and forgive their sins and heal their land. (The Living Bible)

When I read this passage in context I find that the temple had just been completed and the people had prayed and celebrated the wonderful presence of God. After several days King Solomon sent the people to their tents. The people were happy and joyful because God had been so good to them. Solomon was feeling very proud he had accomplished all he set out to do.

Solomon reminds me of the American people. God has been so good to us. We have fought wars in other lands, but America has been kept safe. We feel proud of our jobs, our security and our ability to take care of ourselves. We now have a generation of people who have been able to satisfy most of their wants and all of their needs.

Since things were so great, why would the people need to humble themselves and turn from their wicked ways? Verse 12 tells us that one night God appeared to Solomon.

God said the temple is really mine and a place for the people to worship me. But verse 13 takes an odd turn. God said...
If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locust swarms to eat up all of your crops, or if I send an epidemic among you… (TLB)

What?! The windows of heaven shut up?! Could this relate to our economic situation today?

As I listen to the news and talk with people I realize the pressures that we face as a Nation. The air seems to be filled with gloom and despair. Have we forgotten God’s promises? All through the Bible we find that God hears and answers prayer. As a child of God I choose to look to God, claim his promises, and remember that, come what may, God has the power to heal our land if his people will pray and trust Him.

I can’t close this note without stating that God is fair and just. He not only promised to care for his people if they would pray and seek his face, he gave a warning in verses 19-22 as to what would happen to the people who forgot God. Search out 2 Chronicles 7. It will challenge your heart.


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