Our nation has now made decisions to turn its back on Israel and has proclaimed June is officially “Gay Pride Month”.
Of course these are already evidences of God’s judgment upon this nation. A further evidence of God’s judgment is when a nation has refused to follow God’s laws and is under the curse of God He promised to bring a “nation of a fierce countenance” (Deuteronomy 28:36, 50). The muslim nations are now licking their chops at the prospect of taking over an obviously weak and vulnerable America that has become totally sympathetic towards this fierce group who wants to destroy them.
With all this facing us as well as much more what can be done? It is sometimes very frustrating to me that people who are most likely not even saved have more confidence in their ability to make an impact and turn things around to a degree than the people of God have.
All they have to depend on is natural means such as voting, passing laws, etc. to make external surface changes.
We have the authority, power and wisdom of God and from God to root out and tear down strongholds through intercession, fasting, and repentance and particularly corporate prayer, fasting, repentance and intercession.
Most will acknowledge this and mention it but never call for a solemn assembly and call the people of God to corporately commit to a time of fasting, repentance, and intercession to cry out to God for mercy, for intervention, to show mercy instead of wrath (Habakkuk 3:2), to cry out to Him for the lost, for the rain of the Holy Ghost, for the harvest, for the church and for the nation.
When the church fails to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world through its witness that must be obtained and maintained in the power of God through intercession, fasting, holy living, and evangelism wickedness takes over a society as has happened in ours.
It is easier to lay the blame at the feet of the charismatics, or the calvinists, or the OSAS group, or if all else fails we can all agree to blame it on Joel Osteen. This is convenient and self justifying but this is not going to change anything.
Most do not commit to this because they have become satisfied with a form and having “good services” and “good preaching” while making no impact on their society, hardly seeing sinners genuinely converted, laborers (not ushers or pew sitters) raised up, etc.
They do not believe what God says in the Bible and the impact intercession, fasting, and evangelism can make especially when done corporately.
Time and again throughout the Bible we see example after example of God’s people threatened to be destroyed and the leaders (I am referring to spiritual leaders so don’t try to avoid responsibility by telling me our godless secular leaders would never call for such a thing) would call for a time of corporate fasting, intercession and repentance.
In the book of Esther Haman had the king change a law that would have all the Jews executed. Mordecai and Esther called for a three day fast and the law was changed, God’s people were spared, and Haman was hanged on the gallows he had planned to hang Mordecai on.
All this was done in answer to the prayers of God’s people. This was a corporate, concerted effort.
In the book of Jonah judgment was pronounced with no hope of mercy “forty days and Ninevah shall be overthrown” (Jonah 3:4).
It said the people “believed God and proclaimed a fast and put on sackcloth” (Jonah 3:5). They believed God was going to overthrow them yet they cried out in desperation and God spared them.
Their attitude was “Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from His fierce anger, that we perish not” (Jonah 3:9).
Our attitude is “There is nothing we can do.” The truth of the matter is often we do not believe God as they did and are unwilling and unconcerned to do what they did. It is unbelief, disobedience, laziness, apathy and indifference.
It is evidence they do not believe God and they do not believe what He said about prayer, intercession, fasting, repentance and solemn assemblies.
In 1 Samuel 7 the children of Israel were going to be destroyed by the Philistines but they called for a day of corporate fasting, repentance, confessing their sins and asking God for mercy. The result was “the Lord thundered with a great thunder on that day upon the Philistines, and discomfited them; and they were smitten before Israel” (1 Samuel 7:10).
In 2 Chronicles 20 the children of Ammon and the children of Moab and others came against Jehoshaphat. The Bible says “Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and PROCLAIMED A FAST THROUGHOUT ALL JUDAH. And JUDAH GATHERED THEMSELVES TOGETHER, TO ASK HELP OF THE LORD:…THEY CAME TO SEEK THE LORD” (2 Chronicles 20:3-4).
After two failed attempts for the children of Israel to defeat the Benjamites they set aside a day of corporate fasting, prayer and repentance (Judges 20:26). After this they defeated the Benjamites.
In the book of Joel “a nation…strong, and without number, whose teeth are the teeth of a lion” (Joel 1:6) is coming to destroy the nation.
What is the remedy? “Let’s have some good preaching!” “There is nothing we can do as this is the judgment of God”. “This is just the fulfilling of the scriptures”. “This is the signs of the times”.
Yes nothing like some Arminian Calvinism!
This is not what they did. This is the example given us as well as the many others (Romans 15:4, 1 Corinthians 10:6, 11). What is this in the scripture for?
Here is what they did and the example given to us:
Joel 1:13-GIRD YOURSELVES, AND LAMENT, YE PRIESTS; HOWL, YE MINISTERS OF THE ALTAR: COME, LIE ALL NIGHT IN SACKCLOTH, YE MINISTERS OF MY GOD:
Most do not have the heart, the burden, the concern or the desire to obey this and this is why it does not happen. All the more reason we need it.
Jesus the Son of God who never sinned regularly spent whole nights in prayer.
Joel 1:14-SANCTIFY YE A FAST, CALL A SOLEMN ASSEMBLY, GATHER THE ELDERS AND ALL THE INHABITANTS OF THE LAND INTO THE HOUSE OF THE LORD YOUR GOD, AND CRY UNTO THE LORD,
Joel 1:15-ALAS FOR THE DAY! FOR THE DAY OF THE LORD IS AT HAND, AND AS A DESTRUCTION FROM THE ALMIGHTY SHALL IT COME,
All around us things are deteriorating and it is business as usual. No burden, no concern, no desperation and no faith to intervene and stop certain things from coming to pass.
Of course much cannot be stopped but some can and judgment can be minimized and postponed. God repeatedly shows an unusual amount of mercy on their nations when wicked men like Ahab (1 Kings 21:27-29), and Manasseh (2 Chronicles 33:12-13), even though these were the men responsible for bringing the wickedness on their nation.
Joel 2:12-THEREFORE ALSO NOW SAITH THE LORD, TURN YE EVEN TO ME, WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH FASTING, AND WITH WEEPING AND WITH MOURNING:
If these things are not involved then is someone really turning to God with all their heart?
Joel 2:13-AND REND YOUR HEART, AND NOT YOUR GARMENTS, AND TURN UNTO THE LORD YOUR GOD; FOR HE IS GRACIOUS AND MERCIFUL, SLOW TO ANGER, AND OF GREAT KINDNESS, AND REPENTETH HIM OF THE EVIL.
Joel 2:14-WHO KNOWETH IF HE WILL RETURN AND REPENT AND LEAVE A BLESSING BEHIND HIM;
Here again the Bible says if we do our part and obey what God has told us who knows the degree of mercy God may yet show at this late hour?
The avoiding judgment and showing mercy is really only the negative side. We are wanting more than just a little more time and just being spared.
We are pleading for an outpouring of God’s Spirit to bring conviction on the church and our society, the convicting, converting, saving, healing, delivering power of God to advance God’s kingdom, exalt His name, and liberate the captives. The power to tear down the strongholds of the enemy.
Joel 2:15-BLOW THE TRUMPET IN ZION, SANCTIFY A FAST, CALL A SOLEMN ASSEMBLY:
Joel 2:16-GATHER THE PEOPLE TOGETHER
This is not a feeble exhortation to tell carnal people who only pray selfish prayers when it is convenient and only pray for their own interests to remember to pray for their country, the church, the lost and for an outpouring.
It will do no good for such people to tack on 30 seconds of wishing to their already feeble almost non existent prayer life.
This is the call for a corporate gathering, a solemn assembly to confess the personal sins, the sins of the church and the sins of the nation.
God’s power is multiplied exponentially when we come together in agreement (Deuteronomy 32:30, Matthew 18:19, John 17).
God’s Power was poured out when the people were in “one accord in one place” (Acts 2:1-4).
God’s power was manifested with “great power” when they were “of one heart and one soul” (Acts 4:32).
God’s power was manifested when they were “all with one accord in Solomon’s porch” (Acts 5:12).
It is always the call of scripture from the heart of God for His people to be in unity of the Spirit (Ephesians 4:3), in the unity of the faith (Ephesians 4:13).
Full bellies that do not fast and pray result in divisions (Romans 16:17-18) that weaken the church and bring judgment.
We are to glorify God with one mind and one mouth (Romans 15:6), to all speak the same thing, to have no divisions, to be of the same mind and of the same judgment (1 Corinthians 1:10). These meetings work to bring this about.
These meetings are more important than a wedding and the wedding is to be put on hold until this corporate time of fasting, intercession and repentance for the lost, the church, the rain, the harvest and the nation is completed (Joel 2:16).
Joel 2:17-LET THE PRIESTS, THE MINISTERS OF THE LORD, WEEP BETWEEN THE PORCH AND THE ALTAR, AND LET THEM SAY SPARE THY PEOPLE, O LORD, AND GIVE NOT THINE HERITAGE TO REPROACH, THAT THE HEATHEN SHOULD RULE OVER THEM: WHEREFORE SHOULD THEY SAY AMONG THE PEOPLE, WHERE IS THEIR GOD?
Most of the divisions I have seen between leaders are claimed to be over principle or doctrine but usually the closer you get you find it is almost always personal and not doctrinal or principle.
I am not trying to get people to think about praying. I am trying to plead with leaders in the body of Christ, who have influence, respect and a voice among God’s people (many are my friends on facebook) to call God’s people to solemn assemblies. Call a set time, call for topics to be prayed over, confess the sins of the people, the church and the nation, set the example, lead the people.
We have tried everything else and it is proven it does not work.
This does and will work if it is obeyed and applied.
Soon it will be too late.