Our Best Thought is a weekly devotional thoughtfully penned by leaders in DUMC arising from their daily devotions. The devotional’s title, “Our Best Thought” is taken from the hymn, “Be Thou My Vision” as a reference to God: “Thou my best thought, by day or by night.” Publishes on Sundays.
“I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one. So I will pour out my wrath on them and consume them with my fiery anger, bringing down on their own heads all they have done, declares the Sovereign Lord.”
“Go up and down the streets of Jerusalem, look around and consider, search through her squares. If you can find but one person who deals honestly and seeks the truth, I will forgive this city.”
In Ezekiel 22, God was angry with the Jews for their wickedness. From the princes to the priest to the officials to the prophets and to all the people of the land; all have sinned. They have "all become dross" (v. 19). They have incurred the wrath of God and thus His judgement on the nation will come.
God listed down the sins and wickedness of all the people in the land; sins ranging from politics (using power to shed blood, devouring people, taking treasures and precious things), to religion (despising holy things, desecrating the Sabbath, doing violence to God’s law and profaning His name), to economy (accepting bribes to shed blood, taking interest and profiting from the poor, extorting unjust gains) and to social (sexual sins, extortion and committing robbery, oppressing the poor and needy and mistreating foreigners and widows, denying them justice).
However, our God is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He is a God of a second chance. He will not destroy the nation if He could find someone among the people who would build up the wall (through prayer) and stand before him in the gap (between God and the disobedient and rebellious people).
The tragedy was that God found none that day.
The environment and condition that Ezekiel and Jeremiah lived in as described in Ezekiel 22 and Jeremiah 5 are no different from today. The political, religious, economic and social sins are still prevalent today, because the days are evil. Psalm 78:58-59 warns us not to provoke God to anger and incur his wrath for it is a fearful (dreadful) thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Heb. 10:31).
God found no one in the days of Ezekiel to stand in the gap and intercede. I pray that this will not be the situation today. As God is looking for someone who would build up a wall and stand in the gap on behalf of the land, may our answer be “Here am I Lord, I will build up the wall and stand in the gap”. Let us all do our part and build a firewall of prayer and prayer altars in our homes, asking God to forgive our sins and heal our land.
May we all heed the plea of Amos in Amos 5:6, “Seek the Lord and live”.
"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 I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land”.
2 Chron. 7:14
Lord, in my imperfection, in my sinful nature, here am I Lord. I humble myself and call to You for Your forgiveness, for Your help and for Your healing of our land.
In Jesus name. Amen
Pastor Allan Leong is Zone Pastor for KL Zone.
Our Best Thought is a weekly devotional that follows DUMC's Bible Reading Plan. Posts on Sundays.