Praying for Judgment to Fall on America

Praying for Judgment to Fall on America

elijah-lgHe came from nowhere.  No warning, no advanced notice, nothing.  One day, he just showed up and spoke a few words that brought an entire nation to its knees… literally.  Without any fanfare, pedigree, entourage or press agent, this strangely-clad man with intense, piercing eyes stood among the lunchtime traffic, raised his arms, and bellowed:

“As the Lord, the God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, surely there shall be neither dew nor rain these years, except by my word.”*

And just like that, the sky dried up, the three and a half year drought began, and our lives were changed forever.  Thus was our introduction to Elijah the prophet— the Elijah of Mount Carmel fame.

You must understand that a drought in Elijah’s day was much different than a drought today.  There was no water rationing or voluntary restrictions.  There were no, “You may wash your car on even numbered days and water your lawn on odd numbered days”— type of official pronouncements.  No, it was nothing like that.

drought-cattleA drought in Elijah’s day meant crop failures, the death of all livestock, systemic famine, and disease that ran unchecked among a starving population.  It meant that people, innocent people— the young and old and infirmed, died.  It meant the loss of homes and farms and families and futures.

It meant an economic upheaval many times worse than the Great Depression or the plagues of Europe.  Drought brought prolonged suffering to tens of thousands of people with no end in sight.  It led to hopelessness, depression, despair, and suicide.

When Elijah spoke those 26 words of divine judgment he literally pronounced a death sentence on their society and culture.

But, why?  What was his reason for shutting up the sky for an indeterminate amount of time?  What was he trying to accomplish by calling for the destruction of Ahab’s kingdom?  What was Elijah, and God, trying to do?

You know the answer.  As the late Paul Harvey would say, “And you know the rest of the story.”  Elijah was hoping to bring the land of Israel to repentance and back into fellowship with the God of the land— the God they had long ago rejected and abandoned.  He was hoping, once the people of the land were stripped of their pride, sin and self-sufficiency, they would repent “in dust and ashes” and be drawn back into a dependant relationship with the Creator of the land.

Elijah’s goal was not destruction, but repentance.  And that’s just what happened in 1 Kings 18.

Did it ever dawn on you that, like Elijah of old, God may have some of His holy ones praying for judgment to fall on America in order to bring her back to repentance?  That maybe, after a three year drought, we as a nation may experience our own Mount Carmel encounter with God?

Remember the words of Elijah to the nation of Israel, “How long will you hesitate between two opinions?  If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” *  In other words, now is the time to choose… for them and for us.

Are you praying for the same?  Should you be?  Should I?

*1 Kings 17:1; 18:21

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Listen while we look at Praying for Judgment to Fall on America. This is a study of Revelation 14:8-11.

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232:  The Timeless Message of Haggai, Part 1

232: The Timeless Message of Haggai, Part 1

After 14 years of doing nothing the Lord finally sent the prophet Haggai to confront the apathy and laziness of His remnant. First, the Lord rebukes them for their excuse.

Thus speaks the LORD of hosts, saying: “This people says, ‘The time has not come, the time that the Lord’s house should be built.'”

Really? But the Lord responds to their excuse this way.

“Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, and this temple to lie in ruins?”

In other words, you can’t find the time to build My house but you have plenty of time to build your own house.

Sound familiar? I thought so. Keep listening for more of Haggai’s message to us today.
The following is a study of Haggai 1:1-15.

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You want to go grab a grub?

You want to go grab a grub?

Remember the dream Pharaoh had about the seven cattle and the seven ears of grain?  It seems that in Pharaoh’s dreams he saw seven cows, full, fat and healthy, and then seven other cows, gaunt and sickly-looking.  As he watched in his dream, the gaunt cows devoured the fat ones.  Why?  What did this mean?

Then, right on the heels of dream one came dream two.  It was the same principle repeated— only now the characters are seven plump ears of grain and seven thin, sun-scorched ears of grain.  Ah, I see, “second verse, same as the first.”  Now, in dream two, the seven thin, sun-scorched ears of grain swallowed up the fat, plump and healthy ears.

Again, why?  What does this mean?

Enter Joseph.

gauntcows-300Joseph, as you remember, tells Pharaoh that God is revealing to him what He is going to do in the very near future.  God is giving Pharaoh a glimpse into the future, so to speak.  I’ll let Joseph tell you in his own words.

“Pharaoh’s dreams are one and the same; God has told to Pharaoh what He is about to do.  The seven good cows are seven years; and the seven good ears are seven years; the dreams are one and the same.  The seven lean and ugly cows that came up after them are seven years, and the seven thin ears scorched by the east wind will be seven years of famine.  It is as I have spoken to Pharaoh: God has shown to Pharaoh what He is about to do.  Behold, seven years of great abundance are coming in all the land of Egypt; and after them seven years of famine will come, and all the abundance will be forgotten in the land of Egypt, and the famine will ravage the land.  So the abundance will be unknown in the land because of that subsequent famine; for it will be very severe.  Now as for the repeating of the dream to Pharaoh twice, it means that the matter is determined by God, and God will quickly bring it about.” *

Get the gist?  Bad times are soon to be upon Egypt like a raging storm and there is nothing Pharaoh can do about it.  And I mean bad times!  Real bad times.  In fact, they were to be so bad that no one will even remember what life was like before the famine. Serious stuff.

What was Pharaoh to do when faced with the certain economic meltdown of their society?  What should he tell his people to do knowing that the collapse of the Egyptian dollar is imminent?  How can he, the ruler of Egypt, prepare his government for hyper-inflation and food and fuel shortages?  What should they do?

For one thing, listen to the advice of Joseph.

“Now let Pharaoh look for a man discerning and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt.  Let Pharaoh take action to appoint overseers in charge of the land, and let him exact a fifth of the produce of the land of Egypt in the seven years of abundance.  Then let them gather all the food of these good years that are coming, and store up the grain for food in the cities under Pharaoh’s authority, and let them guard it.  Let the food become as a reserve for the land for the seven years of famine which will occur in the land of Egypt, so that the land will not perish during the famine.” *

In other words, during the times of abundance… prepare!  Get off your rear, take your head out of the sand, quit listening to the pundits who are lying to you and prepare!  It’s not that hard.  Follow this simple rule: If you have today, store for the time when you won’t have.  Like, duh.  Be smart and prudent and wise and prepare for coming uncertain times.  Otherwise… flash forward to gaunt cow.  Get the picture?

And, as you know, Pharaoh took Joseph’s advice and not only survived, but thrived and prospered during the seven years of famine.  Are we at least as smart as Pharaoh?  I sure hope so.

Since we are going to spend a great deal of time talking about how to prepare for the coming collapse of our economy, the unraveling of our society, the possible declaring of martial law and, quite honestly, the greatest ministry opportunity we have ever had in our lifetime— I thought I’d preface all this with a word picture. No, make that more of an object lesson.

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Now, go buy some extra groceries at Wal-Mart the next time you go shopping and we’ll talk more about this tomorrow.

Rest easy… and go grab a grub.

*Genesis 41:25-36

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