Sunday, July 19, 2009

2 Chronicles 7:14

I've gotten this forward from about 4 different sources. If you are, or have friends that are, "churchy"; you've probably gotten a forward recently that invokes the words of 2 Chronicles 7:14:

"..if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land." (NRSV)

The forward invokes these words as a sort of patriotic call. These words were used to call people to vote for McCain back in 2008. They've been used as a rallying cry against abortion, and against same-sex unions, and against a bunch of different specific "bad stuff" here in the United States.

No matter how they've been misused, they still stand as relevant words. But no longer simply relevant to a nation, and especially not only relevant to the United States of America, even though many would like to believe we are some how a nation specifically "blessed by God" for one reason or another (probably cause our dollar bills give Him a shout out).

These are words directed to God's chosen people. In 2 Chronicles, it meant the people of Israel - God's chosen people to reach the world. But the story of God's chosen people doesn't stop with King David and Solomon rebuilding the temple. Through Jesus Christ's death/resurrection/pouring out His Spirit - we have all become God's people...worldwide. The covenant He made with Abraham has broken wider than Israel ever imagined. It's now about God's Kingdom, which is being proclaimed by it's citizens all throughout creation.

As I said earlier, these are still remarkably relevant words. No longer to one nation, but to all citizens of the Kingdom of God. It's not about us making sure the United States shines as a "sinless country". It's about the people of God found in the US, Canada, Ethiopia, India, and every other country turning from themselves, and turning towards God and His love for all.

Does this inspire prayer for leaders/action towards changing laws? Yup. Does this inspire prayer for troops? Definitely. But not simply our leaders, or laws that impact our country, and not simply prayer for "our" troops. This is a global, Kingdom thing.

God calls us to repent, and promises/is already bringing forgiveness, and has already begun His ultimate act of Healing all of creation. May we join Him in that work, and recognize our Kingdom citizenship above all others...

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