Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Seek God

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Zephaniah 2:1-15

TO CHEW ON: "Seek the Lord, all you meek of the earth,
Who have upheld His justice.
Seek righteousness, seek humility.
It may be that you will be hidden
In the day of the Lord's anger." Zephaniah 2:3

After sounding the alarm about the coming Day of the Lord, Zephaniah begs Judah—both the shameless sinners ("O undesirable [shameless] nation") and those who upheld His ways all along—to seek God.

The Bible is peppered with similar advice. We are to seek God:
  • When He feels distant - Acts 17:27
  • When we're in trouble - Hosea 10:12; Amos 5:4.
  • When we're in need - Matthew 6:33; Luke 11:10.
  • Continually - Psalm 105:4.
  • Wholeheartedly - Deuteronomy 4:29; Jeremiah 29:13
  • Before it is too late - Isaiah 55:6, Zephaniah 2:2-3.
  • Personally - Psalm 27:8
About such personal seeking, Matthew Henry in his commentary about our Zephaniah passage says:

"How careful should we all be to seek peace with God, before the Holy Spirit withdraws from us, or ceases to strive with us; before the day of grace is over, or the day of life; before our everlasting state is determined! Let the poor, despised, and afflicted, seek the Lord, and seek to understand and keep his commandments better, that they may be more humbled for their sins" (emphasis added).
  • And as a nation - 2 Chronicles 14:4; Zephaniah 2:1.
Matthew Henry on a nation seeking God in repentance:
"The prophet calls to national repentance, as the only way to prevent national ruin. A nation not desiring, that has no desires toward God, is not desirous of his favour and grace, has no mind to repent and reform....The chief hope of deliverance from national judgments rests upon prayer" (Matthew Henry's Commentary - his commentary and more study helps here - emphasis added).
I ask myself, am I seeking God with the zeal and urgency that Zephaniah begs his listeners to have? Do I pray for unsaved loved ones to seek God before it is too late? Do I have faith for my nation, and pray for a national turning to God?

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for Zephaniah's words of warning. Help me to be diligent about seeking You, helping others to find You, and praying for my nation to seek You before it is too late. Amen.

MORE: Seeking God's face for my nation

Recently a letter came to us from Bruce Clemenger, president of the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada (EFC), asking that we pray for a case that is currently before the Supreme Court of Canada. (The case has arisen from circumstances outlined here.)  In his words:

"In November we will be in the Court to defend the rights of Evangelicals and others to speak truth—sometimes hard truth—into the public square.

The Court will decide if we can speak about a biblical understanding of sexual morality without being fined or imprisoned. This is what is at stake. This is one of the most crucial and challenging cases we have taken on. We need your prayer and your support."
The two questions the court will rule on are, again as outlined in his letter:
"1. Can Christians preach and teach against what we believe to be a sinful behaviour—a behaviour that we believe ultimately harms the person involved—but still love the person?
2. Can Christians be critical—in public—of the activities of a person or community without this criticism being understood as hatred?"
Will you join me in prayer for Canada, and the continuation of our freedom to speak God's truth?

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