Study from God’s Word… 2nd Chronicles, Chapters 29 - 31 … Passage for Reflection: 2nd Chronicles 30: 18 – 20 … NIV 18 Although most of the many people who came from Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar and Zebulun had not purified themselves, yet they ate the Passover, contrary to what was written. But Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, "May the LORD, who is good, pardon everyone 19 who sets his heart on seeking God—the LORD, the God of his fathers—even if he is not clean according to the rules of the sanctuary." 20 And the LORD heard Hezekiah and healed the people.
My Journal for Today: Wow! Don’t you just love Hezekiah and wish that we had such a person to take charge of our country as we celebrate Independence Day today. Oh to have a leader like Hezekiah who would swoop into our land with a heart for God’s righteous ways and His lost children, a heart as big as was Hezekiah’s, reflected and brought out in today’s highlight passage.
As Hezekiah became the most righteous King of God’s peoples since Jehoshaphat, he even invited the rebellious Jewish tribes from the North, in Israel, to come down to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover Feast and to worship in the Temple, which he had restored for consecrated worship of the one true living God. And oh how I pray for developing a heart like Hezekiah’s in my own character; because at one time in my life, I had people with vulnerable and forgiving hearts, just like Hezekiah, … mature and strong Christians, praying that God would have mercy on His child, Bill Berry, and forgive the sins of a seeker who had come forth for repentance and to establish his covenant with God.
Yes, at one time in my life, I was one of those broken children of God, … a seeker after God’s Spirit and one who had wandered from the Lord’s ways for many years. But God used people with a heart like Hezekiah’s to offer up prayers for my salvation and to be forgiving reflections of God Himself; and God came after me, desiring, just as He did with those people from the North in Israel, to allow me to repent and be cleansed by the atoning blood of His covenant sacrifice. In my case He had sent Jesus to be my Redeemer; and the Lord was so patient and gave me the same kind of love that God did when Hezekiah prayed for God’s children to be healed and saved.
I hope those of us who call ourselves “Christian” can – and will – mature in our faith to have a heart like that of Hezekiah, giving quarter to those who are obviously seekers, but those who have lived under the oppression of their own sin. And we need to be, like Hezekiah was, praying for those in our lives whom we know have been walking in unrighteousness but are beginning to show signs of seeking after a transformation of their lives by the only change-agent Who can make a difference; and in these times that is the Spirit of the living Lord, Jesus Christ.
My Prayer for Today: Lord, here on July 4, 2010 I pray for those in my life who seek after Your love and forgiveness, … the ones whom I know are lost or are oppressed and imprisoned by their own sinful habits. Help them to find You as I have and to repent and break free; and have mercy on them to provide them with the grace You have so promised to all who claim Your Son, Jesus, as their Lord and Savior. Amen