Archive for September, 2012

TO HEAL A NATION(Pt. 2)

If a Nation is to experience healing and renewal it must value God’s Word as a reliable guide for living. This is indeed the formula that the LORD God gives to His people Israel through the prophet Malachi. In addition to learning to fear and honor His great Name, the prophet Malachi wrote, “Remember the teachings of my servant Moses, the laws and commands which I gave him at Mount Sinai for all the people of Israel to obey. “(Malachi 4:4 GNT)

One of the most misrepresented meanings of God’s Word is “Law”. Our Western mindset naturally interprets the meaning of “law” simply as something legal as “some form of legalism”, whereas the Hebraic concept of God’s laws is broader. God’s Law is better interpreted as “a guide for life” or “teaching and instructions” for intended blessing. Take for example the sweet psalmist and beloved king of Israel, David. He records in the first three verses of his beloved poem, Psalm 1:

“How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked,

Nor stand in the path of sinners,

Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the LORD,

And in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,

Which yields its fruit in its season

And its leaf does not wither,

And in whatever he does, he prospers”(Psalm 1:1-3 NASB).

Again, we can read king David’s longest recorded poem ,Psalm 119. He extols God’s Word by starting each stanza of this Psalm with one of the 22 letters of the Hebrew Alphabet. This is intended to call attention to the fact that each letter of the Hebrew Alphabet is full of meaning and significance. As you read through this great psalm you will notice some of the themes regarding the value of God’s Word. God’s law (teaching and instruction) leads us to:

A BLESSED life

“Happy are those who keep His decrees

and seek Him with all their heart. “(Psalm 119:2 HCSB)

An OVERCOMING life

“How can a young man keep his way pure?

By keeping Your word. “(Psalm 119:9 HCSB)

A DEFENDED life

“Take insult and contempt away from me,

for I have kept Your decrees.(Psalm 119:22 HCSB)

A RENEWED life

“My life is down in the dust;

give me life through Your word.(“Psalm 119: 25 HCSB)

An INFORMED life

“Help me understand Your instruction,

and I will obey it

and follow it with all my heart. “(Psalm 119:34 HCSB)

A SONG-FILLED life

“Your statutes are the theme of my song

during my earthly life. ” (Psalm 119:54 HCSB)

A SECURE life

“You are my shelter and my shield;

I put my hope in Your word.” (Psalm 119:114 HCSB)

A FEARLESS life

“Princes have persecuted me without cause,

but my heart fears only Your word. (Psalm 119:161 HCSB)

A PEACE-Filled life

“Abundant peace belongs to those

who love Your instruction,

nothing makes them stumble. “(Psalm 119:165 HCSB)

THE FELLOWSHIP OF GOD

These are just a few of the enduring promises for those who read, studying to obey God’s Word. The real and ultimate goal of learning to lean into His Word is fellowshipping with God through His Son, Jesus Christ. Luke records in His Gospel how after Jesus was raised from the dead he met two men that were dejected having only heard of His crucifixion. They were defeated not knowing God’s words of promise. But Jesus joins them on their journey to Emmaus.

“He said to them, “How unwise and slow you are to believe in your hearts all that the prophets have spoken! Didn’t the Messiah have to suffer these things and enter into His glory?” Then beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He interpreted for them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures….Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized Him, but He disappeared from their sight. So they said to each other, “Weren’t our hearts ablaze within us while He was talking with us on the road and explaining the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:25-27, 31, 32 HCSB)

Their hearts were healed of the hurt and confusion that had enshrouded their lives,feeling abandoned to a world of unbelief. The wick of hope had all but been extinguished until Jesus rekindled their flame of faith by showing them “Himself in all the Scriptures”. This is the only hope for healing a Nation; returning to the written and living Word of God.

May our prayer be an echo of king David’s heart in this critical hour,

“I long for Your salvation, Lord,

and Your instruction is my delight.

I wander like a lost sheep,

seek Your servant,

for I do not forget Your commands. “(Psalm 119:174, 176 HCSB)

Copyright(c) 2012, Walter Fletcher Jr., All rights are reserved. This article may be copied free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered from its original content. Address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

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TO HEAL A NATION

TO HEAL A NATION

The Old Covenant concludes with the Book of Malachi. In it the prophet documents(perhaps like a Court reporter) a series of inquiries from the LORD God to His people,Who declares, “For My name will be great among the nations, from the rising of the sun to its setting. Incense and pure offerings will be presented in My name in every place because My name will be great among the nations,” says Yahweh of Hosts.

But you are profaning it ….For I am a great King,” says Yahweh of Hosts, “and My name will be feared among the nations. (Malachi 1:11, 12, 14 HCSB)

In essence , God has brought them into judgement because of their disobedience or indifference towards Him. And each time as a rejoiner to God, the people respond, “Wherein …have we done…or not done these things that You accuse us of?”(See Malachi 1:2,6,7;2:17;3:7). The LORD had declared that inspite of their not honoring Him, He still remained a great king. In other words, Their behavior(Good or bad) did not make Him any less God over all.

“For My name will be great among the nations….For I am a great King,” says Yahweh of Hosts, and My name will be feared among the nations.”(Malachi 1:12a, 14 HCSB)

GOD IS UNCHANGING

Our awareness or lack of acknowledgement of God’s right to rule in His universe(or in the earth) doesn’t change Who He is. God alone is God and therefore has no Ego. And as someone observed, “Time writes no wrinkle on the brow of the Eternal One”. God is not moody, therefore He has no bad days. But for His own Name sake He throughout history calls nations into account for their neglecting to give Him the glory and honor due Him as King.

“The Bible is the News ahead of the News” someone observed.

In Psalm 2 ,the psalmist inquiry speaks very directly to this day and hour in which we live.

“Why are the nations so angry? Why are the people making useless plans?

The kings of the earth prepare to fight, and their leaders make plans together

against the Lord and his appointed one.

They say, ‘‘Let’s break the chains that hold us back and throw off the ropes that tie us down.’’

But the one who sits in heaven laughs; the Lord makes fun of them.

Then the Lord warns them and frightens them with his anger.

He says, ‘‘I have appointed my own king to rule in Jerusalem on my holy mountain, Zion.’’ (Psalm 2:1-6 NCV)

Again,the prophet Malachi reminds us that God’s people may forget how great is His goodness toward them. Yet He still holds them to account to acknowledge His right to rule over them. When they refuse to honor Him by true heart obedience to His commandments they bring a curse upon themselves and the land in which they dwell. But the prophet holds out(as do all the Hebrew prophets) a promise for the remnant of God’s people who turn(or return) to Him as their King.

“But for you who fear My name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings, and you will go out and playfully jump like calves from the stall….”Remember the instruction of Moses My servant, the statutes and ordinances I commanded him at Horeb for all Israel. Look, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome Day of the Lord comes. And he will turn the hearts of fathers to [their] children and the hearts of children to their fathers. Otherwise, I will come and strike the land with a curse.” (Malachi 4:2, 4-6 HCSB)

TO HEAL A NATION

God’s remedy for a Nation that has broken away from Its spiritual morings is to remember and return to His teachings(Literally His Torah/Word) given to Moses and expect one in the power of Elijah to turn His people back to God.  Why? First, in order that Families be restored. The family is the smallest unite of the House of God. And “As goes the family so goes the Nation”. Second, when families are healed, the land in which we dwell begins to throw off It’s curse. In other words, the consequences of sin begin to be reversed and the land begins to respond to heaven once again. Never forget that returning to the Word of God and the Worship of God by the people of God are powerful healing agents upon the land. This is God’s Word through the prophet Isaiah,

“Seek the Lord while He may be found;

call to Him while He is near.

Let the wicked one abandon his way

and the sinful one his thoughts;

let him return to the Lord,

so He may have compassion on him,

and to our God, for He will freely forgive.

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,

and your ways are not My ways.”

[This is] the Lord’s declaration.

“For as heaven is higher than earth,

so My ways are higher than your ways,

and My thoughts than your thoughts.

For just as rain and snow fall from heaven

and do not return there

without saturating the earth

and making it germinate and sprout,

and providing seed to sow

and food to eat,

so My word that comes from My mouth

will not return to Me empty,

but it will accomplish what I please

and will prosper in what I send it [to do].” (Isaiah 55:6-11 HCSB)

(c) Copyright 2012, Walter Fletcher Jr. All rights reserved. This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not altered in any way from its original contents. Please address all contents to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com