“If my people, which are called by my name, shall 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” (2 Chron. 7:14).
Reverend Billy Graham, arguably the most well-known and respected evangelical preacher of the last 50 years, said in a recently published commentary that America was “founded by men who believed in prayer” and that prayer can turn “the tide of history.”
Rev. Graham in his commentary for Decision magazine, published by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association also stated: “Even though America is just as wicked as Sodom and Gomorrah ever were, and as deserving of the judgment of God, God would spare us if we were earnestly praying, with hearts that had been cleansed and washed by the blood of Christ. He added, “The problems of the world will never be settled unless our national leaders go to God in prayer. If only they would discover the power and wisdom that there is in reliance upon God, we could soon see the solution to the grave problems that face the world!” That is a prophetic word to our nation.
The most common role of a prophet in both Old and New Testament was to speak to the people a word from God. In our day, the Church must accept that it has a prophetic role in our nation. We must speak a word from God to America with both truth and love. Too often our desire to be accepted or even effective in our evangelism has kept us from clearly declaring God’s Word to a nation that has turned its back on Him.
Father, this nation was founded upon Your Word, and its leaders established America upon the precepts and teaching of Jesus. Your people have strayed so far from righteousness…and yet…we are beginning to rise up in prayer! May those of us who are called by Your Name humble ourselves, pray, seek Your face and turn from our wicked ways so that You will hear from heaven, forgive our sins, and heal our land! We ask this in the powerful Name of Jesus!
–adapted from With One Cry: A Renewed Challenge to Pray for America by David Butts. This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise the Lord Jesus, who will be “revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels” (2 Thess. 1:7). Thank him that he will come to restore justice and righteousness in the earth. Confess the times when you have not lived in awareness of Christ’s coming again in power and judgment. Ask him to help you desire and look forward to his coming, and commit yourself to preparing yourself and others for “the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all who have believed” (1:10).
Ask the Spirit to give the churches in your community a sense of urgency in bringing the good news of Jesus’ death and resurrection to the unchurched and unbelieving in their neighborhoods.
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