Summary: God promises to bless the land when we humble ourselves, pray and seek His face, and turn from our sins. This is our responsibility, to pray for God’s blessing for our nation.
The first few chapters of 2 Chronicles record the building of the Temple of God, under King Solomon.
• The Temple was completed and Solomon dedicated it to the Lord, in chapter 6.
• He knelt down before God’s people, spread his hands out toward heaven, and said a long prayer – a prayer for the nation, asking God for His blessings (6:13).
The passage we read was God’s response to his prayer.
It’s a long prayer – we will just read 2 Chron 6:26-27 to understand the context.
The Lord appeared to Solomon one night and said (7:14): “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
The Lord wants the people to seek Him and their nation will be blessed.
• God delights to bless them, but they need to turn to Him.
• Only when the people learn to seek God’s face will they experience God’s grace and blessing for their nation.
Today, God has given us this wonderful nation.
• We too are His people, called by His Name.
• As citizens of this country, we too have the responsibility seek Him and pray for God’s blessing for our land.
Who is God referring to? He said MY PEOPLE, WHO ARE CALLED BY MY NAME.
• We are the ones who can bring healing to our land.
• 1 Peter 2:9 says, “You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light.”
• We, as Christians, have the responsibility to declare the praises of Him who called us out of darkness into His light.
• And we have the responsibility to seek God and bless our nation.
God speaks to His people and not anyone else.
• God wants to bless the land but it will come through His people.
• Revival always begins with God’s own people first.
• We know Him. Those who know Him must seek Him and obey Him.
The Lord says, IF My people…
• This is a condition. No one is ever forced to worship God and seek Him.
• Man is given the freedom. If they are willing to listen and obey; if they are willing to seek Him, they will enjoy what He has promised.
What does the Lord require from us? 1. Humble ourselves.
• We have to admit that there is nothing good in us and that we can do nothing without Him.
• This is the right place to start. God does not hear the prayers of the proud.
• James 4:6 says, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”
• Why? The one who is proud would not need God.
• Pride exalts self and excludes God. Humility is to recognise our need of God.
Charles H. Spurgeon: “It is not our littleness that hinders Christ; but our bigness. It is not our weakness that hinders Christ; it is our strength. It is not our darkness that hinders Christ; it is our supposed light that holds back his hand.”
Man has the tendency to think that it is through our strength, our wisdom, our talents and effort that great things are done.
2. And PRAY and SEEK God’s face.
We are commanded to pray. It is not a “good-to-have”.
We need God. And until man realises that, he won’t pray.
• The point of these verses is that both men and God take counsel and both plan.
• But in the end it is not the counsel and plans of men that are established, but God’s.
• God’s plans take precedence over our plans. It is God who establishes the works of our hands.
Let’s read on - Psalm 33:11-19
• Now we move from planning to implementation (or execution of plan).
• But the point is the same. No matter how great our resources, victory belong to the Lord.
• A king may have a mighty army and strong warriors; his horses may have great strength. But on the day of battle God alone decides who wins.
• God can make the stronger or the weaker win—whichever his plan determines.
• 1 Cor 1:27 “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.”
Shakespeare’s Henry the Fifth
In the Shakespearean play Henry the Fifth (which was also a movie a few years ago), King Henry comes against incredible odds on the battlefield.