Renew Our Days as of Old
March 23, 2003 / Sunday a.m.
19 Thou, O LORD, remainest for ever; thy throne from generation to generation.
20 Wherefore dost thou forget us for ever, and forsake us so long time?
21 Turn thou us unto thee, O LORD, and we shall be turned; renew our days as of old.
22 But thou hast utterly rejected us; thou art very wroth against us.
This is passage from the book of Lamentations that serves as a tremendous comparison between God and mortal men.
Verse 19 says that the "Lord remainest forever, thy throne from generation to generation".
This means that God is:
1. Forever faithful
2. Forever steadfast
3. Forever what he has promised to be
We, on the other hand, are quite different.
Verse 21 the writer begs God to "renew our days of old".
It’s because we are quick to change our passions, alter our promises, and cast aside our responsibilities in our relationship with God.
There are not many of us that haven’t said, or heard it said, "Let’s go back to the good old days!" How many of you are guilty of that?
Those were the days without washing machines and dryers, or telephones with party lines. Those days where gas for your car was only 5 cents, yet you worked all day for not much more than that.
Maybe you want to return to the days where there was no air conditioning, and only the rich people had an electric service in their homes, but not me!
Things might have been simpler 50-60 years ago, but it was because there wasn’t as much available to complicate and fill the lives of people.
There was no such thing as stopping by the convenience store for a loaf of bread on the way home because the wife called her husband on his cell phone.
It’s because there were no cell phones, no Jiffy Stores, no loaves of bread to buy and because your husband most likely was out on the farm with the mules working the fields.
However, there were some things wonderful about those "good old days", and that was the faith and character of people.
For the most part, people believed in God and worshipped God. The generation before us wouldn’t dream of missing a church service, for no excuse other than being exceptionally sick.
Being tired, weary, aching muscles were a way of life, so missing church for any of those reasons would have been laughable to them.
There were very few atheists, and those that were, were so outnumbered that they kept quiet.
Faith ran high in that generation, when they were sick; they knew how to pray or how to get someone to their house that could pray. If they needed rain, they talked to the one who sends rain, and they expected Him to answer.
This past generation loved the Word of God, and loved the one who
preached the Word of God to them.
However, our generation today has so many different versions of the Bible that they can just pick the one that says what they want it to say, and one they can easily understand without digging and searching.
Our generation today can do well without a preacher, and certainly does not want someone giving them counsel on how to live their lives according to the Word of God.
We have learned to live our lives in such ease, such comfort and such fruitfulness, that we have become religious instead of being passionate believers.
This is what I am hearing in the voice and tone of this prophet named
You need to do some background study into the book of Lamentations before you will really understand the writings of this man named Jeremiah.
When Jeremiah cries out "Renew our days of old", he is recording his sorrow over the fact that Israel, who was so wonderfully blessed of Jehovah over all the other nations, yet they had forgotten their Creator and Redeemer.
Israel, who had been protected by a divine arm, loved with a heavenly love, and directed by powerful and anointed men; now have given way to a sin-marked generation which has cast aside their only hope.
Sounds like our world today, does it not? It certainly does. No wonder the prophet cries out, "Renew our days of old!” The man of God cries out from his spirit, it is more than just his flesh hungering for the nation of Israel to return to God, it is the God inside his flesh that cries out.
The bible says that the scriptures are given to us over the years as "holy men of old were moved upon by the Holy Ghost". This makes us know that it is the power of the Holy Ghost moving in and through this prophet that we are hearing.
God is calling for revival through Jeremiah; God is hungering for a return of a loved nation back to his good graces.
However, it is evident that they will choose not to return, so God sends his judgment and destruction.
It has happened to every "Christian" nation or people, they enjoy the blessings and prosperity of God and then they become so complacent.
They become so diluted, and so morally corrupt that the prosperity and blessings of God has to be replaced by judgment.
We are there today. Each of us need to begin to understand the only hope this nation has of a revival is to get the church back on fire, back on their knees, back in tune with the Holy Ghost.
I know that the general opinion of this cry from this pulpit, "Return us to the Days of Old", would be "Oh, everything is fine; just let it work its way out."
I feel an impending sense of judgment if we don’t get something done and get it done quickly. There are fences to mend, there are some promises that we have to make good, and there is an angry God to appease.
This is not the only cry of a passionate writer that made a plea with God to turn His people back to Him…
Turn us again, O God, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
Turn us again, O God of hosts, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
Turn us again, O LORD God of hosts, cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
Turn us, O God of our salvation, and cause thine anger toward us to cease.
He’s angry and rightfully so.
• He’s given us a powerful and pure Holy Ghost, and we have placed it in vessels that are being used for carnality and immorality.
• He’s given us children to teach the truth to, and we have let them do as they choose, when they choose, and now they have no faith.
• He’s given us prosperity, and we have grudgingly given him his 10% or 15% and hold on to everything we possibly can without sharing.
• He’s given us homes, cars, food and comfort, and we have shut up our bowels of compassion when someone comes into our lives and has a very real need.
No wonder he’s angry!
• He has given us his powerful Word, and we have disregarded it.
• He has given us anointed leaders, and we have made them common and placed them on a shelf.
He’s angry at the United States of America, and I don’t think we really can stand in the face of such anger and wrath.
The United States has been here before. I recall a time when prayer was allowed in our schools, and God was blessing and keeping his hand upon the growth of our children.
They were children, yes, energetic, yes, but they did not have the rebellion and anger that they have today.
We had chewing gum on campus, but we didn’t have murders.
We had note writing during class, but we didn’t have 14 year old girls getting pregnant.
We had boys spitting paper wads into the hair of the girl across the room, but we didn’t have those same boys cursing and hitting their teachers.
We decided to get legalistic and listened to the loud voices telling us to rid the schools of god, prayer and discipline, and now we have a god-less society called Public Education. God’s angry, and rightfully so.
What do we do? We do our best to mend the damage. We stand up for what the Word of God says and proclaim it loudly and strongly.
We do our best to love people, but when those same people are willing to compromise truth, faith and the standards of God, we stand firm and refuse to ride along with them.
That’s what we do, and we do it naturally and without having to pray first.
There are some "days of old" dedications and promises that each of us Christians have formally given to God, we need to find them and retrieve them.
We need to do all we can to get them back into our lives, into our families and into our society. We need to do it as quickly as possible, and we need to make sure that our powerful, and angry God, is seeing our intentions and aim.
We need God, and we need him in a dire manner. We need to find people again who are hungry for sermons instead of sermonettes, and we need people who are tired of sin and sinning.
If this nation will turn from their sin and reach for their Creator, then we will begin to see his hand again in protection and peace.
During WWII there was a preacher who said to his congregation:
"We have spent years ignoring the ringing of church bells calling us to worship, and now our bells only ring to warn us of another invasion.
For years we have left our churches half empty doing and going where we want, now they are lying in ruins because of bombs.
The money that we refused to give to the work of the Lord, now is taken from us in taxes and higher prices because of fighting.
The food, for which we got into the habit of forgetting to say thanks, now is almost unobtainable because of rationing. Nights that we were called to "watch and pray" and did nothing, now are spent in anxious air-raid precautions.
We have used our automobile tires to take us away from church on Sunday, to the lake, to the camping, to the vacations; and now we have no tires for the whole week.
We did not send enough missionaries to convert the Japanese, now we must send soldiers to destroy them. We have not trained our youth for service to the Saviour, now we must train them for killing our enemies."
Our spiritual enemy is doing his best to distract us from the real battle.
Our enemy is doing his best to get us offended at our own inconveniences and petty differences.
He knows that if he can only get those full of the Holy Ghost to stay distracted, he can continue to do as he chooses until one morning we all wake up and realize that the damage is too deep to fix.
Right now we have the chance, right now – falling upon the mercies of God we might be able to get some things changed. Right now we need to pray together, work together, love each other, living in harmony with each other and appease an angry God.
It’s time for us to be strong in the faith, stand like men and act Christian!
Our families, our faith, our nation depends upon it. I pray that you will realize the lateness of the hour and allow the power of God to charge your flesh to react in fervor and passion.
Yes, Jeremiah had it right, his throne remains forever. Long after the United States of America has been over-ran by their enemies, His throne will stand.
Even though our cities will be charred, burned and destroyed by our enemies (which are many), there will be a throne that will continue to stand for purity, justice and righteousness.
We are promised that the only ones who will stand with that throne are those who have that kind of character in their heart, soul and mind.
"Renew our days of old" should be the cry on each of your lips as you head to the altar of God. "Let me return to my first love" should be the murmur of your heart as you kneel in front of that everlasting throne.
"Consecrate me, dedicate me, remind me, God!" should be the passion on each of our lives as we walk out of this House of God and step back into a nation that is ripe for the judgment of an angry God.
We have not ever tasted of the anger of God; we’ve only enjoyed his grace and mercy.
But if God "never changes", then there is a side of him that is subject to anger, and we must NEVER forget that very important fact!
We really don’t want to taste that anger. I’m reminded of the consequences of his anger…
3 And Israel joined himself unto Baal-peor: and the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel.
4 And the LORD said unto Moses, Take all the heads of the people, and hang them up before the LORD against the sun, that the fierce anger of the LORD may be turned away from Israel.
We absolutely do not want to experience the anger of the Lord…