We just celebrated the anniversary of America’s Independence, and “I come this day with a heavy heart for our nation; for our people; for our children; for our grandchildren; and people of faith.”. Over the past months, we have seen an unprecedented removal of ethical, moral, and spiritual foundations. These foundations have allowed this country, in the past, to be blessed by God; to be civil; to be protected; and to be successful as a nation.
In the times of Jeremiah, the nations of Israel and Judah were having their problems. The people were neglecting God; abandoning God’s commandments; and doing things God considered abominable – in summary, Jeremiah’s people had no Fear of God. Given this situation, God says, in Jeremiah 5:29, “’Shall I not punish them for these things?’ declares the LORD, ‘and shall I not avenge myself on a nation such as this?’”. Given these situations in Scripture as a comparative context, we are now, like in the times of Jeremiah, pushing God’s patience. Therefore, we cannot expect for things to continue to go well. God’s laws are meant for blessing and protecting us, and our actions now are mocking God. Paul instructs us, in Galatians 6:7, that God cannot be mocked: “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.”. Great Britain declared that February 21, 1781 would be a day of prayer and fasting. On this day, the Anglican pastor John Newton, who wrote Amazing Grace, preached a sermon on Jeremiah 5:29. Several comments from Newton’s sermon enlighten us on God and the affairs of nations.
Since we have had a public covenant with God, do you thank that God will not take notice of our public divorce from Him through our actions and the turning of our backs on Him?
God tells us, in 2 Chronicles 7:14, that “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 and will forgive their sin and heal their land.". Following God’s command for prayer when a nation has gone away from his blessings, Paul’s instructions to Timothy, in 1 Timothy 2:1-6, are valid for everybody today as we now live in a “post-Christian culture”: 1) we should remain diligent in our prayers, and our prayers should concern everyone, including all those in authority (e.g., presidents, cabinet members, legislators, governors, mayors, judges); 2) our hearts should be concerned for everyone’s Salvation; and 3) our message (i.e. there is one mediator between God and mankind – Jesus the Christ) should concern everyone
Nations come and go; civilizations come and go; and institutions come and go; but God and His Word abide forever. Therefore, we all should throw ourselves on the mercy of God because it is only by God’s mercy that His hand will be stayed. Remember, justice is getting what we deserve, but mercy is not getting what we deserve.
Are we praying; are our churches houses of prayer, are we repenting for ourselves and our nation; and are we praying for a spiritual awakening in our nation and in the world, that will turn this nation and world back to God, before there is no more mercy?
As in Isaiah 6:8, “And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’ Then I said, ‘Here I am! Send me.’” -- Do something in the name of Jesus the Christ as He leads you; and if not you the who?
TODAY’S AFFIRMATION: Today, I affirm that, because I am in Jesus Christ, I will proclaim Him. (Philippians 1:15f). “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.”. (Philippians 4:14).
SCRIPTURE REFERENCE (ESV): Jeremiah 5:11-31; Galatians 6:7; Matthew 11:21-24; Romans 1:18-32; 1 Timothy 2:1-6; 2 Chronicles 7:14; Isaiah 6:8
THIS SUNDAY’S AUDIO SERMON: You can listen to Archbishop