Today, on our second to last day of our fast, we throw ourselves on the mercy of God. We know that our nation deserves judgement. But, we are asking the Lord for mercy in his judgement. We know that our God loves us and that he will shield us by his power. We stand in his mercy and ask for his intervention.
1Answer me when I call to you,
my righteous God.
Give me relief from my distress;
have mercy on me and hear my prayer.
2How long will you people turn my glory into shame?
3Know that the Lord has set apart his faithful servant for himself;
the Lord hears when I call to him.
when you are on your beds,
search your hearts and be silent.
5Offer the sacrifices of the righteous
and trust in the Lord.
6Many, Lord, are asking, “Who will bring us prosperity?”
Let the light of your face shine on us.
7Fill my heart with joy
when their grain and new wine abound.
8In peace I will lie down and sleep,
for you alone, Lord,
make me dwell in safety.
In this Psalm, David is distressed. He cries out to the Lord- even in his distress he acknowledges who God is. God is righteous and holy- high and lifted up. Yet, he loves us so. He loves his children. We can call on him, asking for relief from distress.
After David’s initial cry for mercy, God answers conquering the evil of the people around David. Now God asks a question. “How long will you people turn my glory into shame? How long will you love delusions and seek false gods?”
In 2 Thessalonians, Paul writes to the church of Thessalonica about the coming of the Man of Lawlessness and how the devil will deceive the nations. At the end of this passage, he tells us that God sends a delusion, because the people LOVE delusion. They are given over to what they want.
2 Thesselonians 2:1-12
The Man of Lawlessness
“1Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers and sisters, 2not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by the teaching allegedly from us—whether by a prophecy or by word of mouth or by letter—asserting that the day of the Lord has already come. 3Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness a is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. 4He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.
5Don’t you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? 6And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. 7For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. 8And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming. 9The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.”
Why would God send a delusion upon the people? Because that is what they love and that is what they serve. He gives them what they want. I believe the delusion that God sends is more powerful than any lie from the enemy. God is not a liar. He does not lie and he does not tempt anyone. But, he allows the people to be given over to their sins of choice and the resulting consequence is destruction. (See Romans 1)
Paul tells the people that the rapture or the catching away of the church will not happen until the rebellion occurs and the Man of Lawlessness is revealed. I believe we have been in the middle of a the great falling away for several years now. Left and right people are experiencing what they call “deconstruction of faith.” Soon, I believe we will see the unveiling of the Man of Lawlessness. The church will see it.
We must pray for mercy, that we will not be deceived. In order to not be deceived, we must pray and repent for loving lies and for any deception we have loved and participated in. Then, we must plead for the protection of the blood of Jesus to cover our homes, our friends, our families and our communities.
In the passage in Psalms, David sings knowing that God has set him apart for his work. This could also be a foreshadowing to Jesus the Messiah. However, David takes the time, in view of God’s question about loving delusions, to seek his heart on his bed. He takes time asking the Lord to search him and to see if there are any wicked ways in him that he has been deceived by. The sacrifices of the righteous are the gifts of a humble and repentant heart.
I see that David comes to the end of the passage where he knows that all is right with God and he can close his eyes in confidence, knowing that his good Heavenly Father will allow him to sleep in safety. This is a wonderful passage to think on- even when there is sin in the world around us, we can have a relationship with the Lord that allows us to confidently search our hearts, knowing that our offenses will be forgiven, when we bring them to him. He will not count our sins against us, when we confess them to him.
Isn’t it lovely knowing that we can ask God for mercy and grace and he gladly gives it to us? Isn’t it lovely to serve a living savior who fights for us, who defends us, who sings over us?
We can live in a world in crisis and be at peace in our hearts. We can even sleep well at night knowing the Lord will defend us and protect us, after a good soul searching.
Today, let us throw ourselves on the mercy of God. Let us seek his mercy for our nation and ask that he opens the eyes of the spiritually blind. Let us ask that he teach us to keep watch on our beds at night- searching our hearts to come to peace and a blessed assurance of the love of Jesus.
Let us not be selfish, but pray that the Lord helps us to harvest. It is not God’s will that anyone perish. Jesus paid it all. The Lord loves all and wants to save, but people love delusion. We must pray that the Lord breaks the power of delusion over the lost and that he shines his light into their hearts through his Holy Spirit.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be your name. Lord, I lift you up. I rejoice in your love. I rejoice in your hope! I rejoice in Jesus Christ your son.
All blessing and honor and glory and power go to Jesus! He is the son of the living God, the first born over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For you, God, were pleased to have all your fullness dwell in Jesus, and through him to reconcile to yourself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. Hallelujah!
Once I was alienated from you, God, and was your enemy in my mind because of my evil behavior. But now you have reconciled me by Christ’s physical body through death to present me holy in your sight, without blemish and free from accusation— if I continue in my faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel. Lord, I am completely surrendered to you! I love you! Thank you for Jesus!
Protect me from the great delusion that is coming over the entire earth by the blood of Jesus. Protect my family, Lord.
I pray that your kingdom will come and your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Bring your kingdom here, Oh Lord! I love you. Grow and build your kingdom here in my family and in my neighborhood. Build your kingdom in my church and in the people of God all around the United States. I pray that we will serve you whole-heartedly, in Jesus’ name!
Be with your body of believers in America. Lord, we need you. We need your power. We do not want to live powerless lives. I want your outpouring to come over me and over my church. Transform my life with your power. Lead me. Teach me. Pour out your Spirit for boldness and anointing in the pulpits of America. Lord, please convict the leaders of God who don’t seek you for your words, but they go to the internet to find their next message. I pray that the pastors will get on their knees in their prayer closets. I pray that the people of God will find their confidence in your throne room. I ask for an outpouring of power, grace, mercy and healing.
Give the church a backbone. Give the church the strength to stand. Give the church the heart to witness for Jesus. Let us talk about Jesus, Lord. I pray that we can work for you while it is still day, because night is coming and no man can work. Pour out your light, Lord Jesus. Pour it out.
I pray for the persecuted church all over the world. Lord, you see their hearts. You know their struggles. You see and feel their pain. Lord, stretch out your hand to protect them. Stretch out your hand to deliver them from evil. Lighten their loads, Lord. May the rod of their oppressors not be able to strike them. I pray for a mighty intervention. Send your angels to minister to these people. Send your angels to fight for them. Send your angels for deliverance. I pray that you will bind Satan’s attacks and attempts to harm your people. I pray that you will raise up more Apostle Pauls, save more persecutors who are doing their work in zealous ignorance. I pray that you will appear in dreams and visions to guards and muslims- leading them out of the bondage of ignorance into your glorious freedom and light in Jesus.
Lord, I pray for healing for the sick. I pray that you strengthen those who are weak. Make them strong, Lord. Breathe life into lifeless bodies. Lord, destroy cancer. Strengthen immune systems. Knit back together bones and muscles, ligaments and tendons. Regenerate damaged tissues and heal what doctors say cannot be healed. Lord, you have more love in your little pinky finger than I do in my entire body. I pray for your love and the resurrection power of Jesus to be poured out on those who cannot pray for themselves today. Bring your strength and healing in the name of Jesus.
I pray for you to raise up the children and the teenagers. Protect them from Satan. Protect them from the world. Pour out your mercy on the children. I pray that they will rise up as a mighty warrior for Christ Jesus. I pray that you will capture their hearts and fill them with the Spirit of wisdom and revelation that these children will know you better.
I pray for those in harms way. I pray that you will deliver those in impending danger. You have children who need delivered, Lord. Deliver them, as you delivered Daniel.
I pray for our governing officials and for our political process. I pray that you will raise up godly leaders and bring low those who will not submit to you. I ask that you give our president, vp, senate and house of representatives and Supreme Court wisdom from above, that we may live peaceful lives. Lord, rule over all the elections. Give your guidance to the voters. It says in your word that you raise up leaders. Lord, raise up godly leaders for our nation. I ask this in Jesus’ name.
Finally, I ask for mercy for our nation. Pour out your mercy. Protect your people, Lord. Show yourself strong. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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