I TIMOTHY 2:1-4: “Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (NKJV)
OBSERVATION: What matters more than our votes, more than the issues, more than the candidate that we choose? What changes the course of nations, opens the hearts of men, and moves the heart of God? It is not a political convention, or a rousing acceptance speech. It is PRAYER!
May I be completely honest. No matter what party you support in the upcoming election, all the promises that are made will never be kept. In each election cycle it seems that every political party, every candidate, every stump speech, proclaims the solution to all the world’s ills. In fact, to take the speeches literally, all of our problems would be completely solved, the economy would thrive, world peace would be ushered in, and I would get a new high paying job – all if I simply voted for the candidate making the promises. Yet, I have lived long enough to know that the same promises, albeit in different wrappings, are made every four years. What is the answer?
It is PRAYER! It is righteousness that exalts a nation, not a robust economy. It is humble hearts calling out to the living God that protects a nation, not an armed military. It is transformed lives through faith in Christ that put an end to inequality and racial strife, not government policies or education. God works through economies, armies, policies, and education – but they are not the source of the solution, merely channels. Nothing happens without God’s people calling out to Him in sincere repentance and faith through intercessory prayer!
All believers should vote, and all believers should commit themselves to repentance, faith, and intercessory prayer!
Just like faith without works is dead – our votes without our prayers will never usher in lasting change.
BOTH ARE NEEDED!
- “Then the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice. When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people, 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 will forgive their sin and heal their land. Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place.” (II Chronicles 7:12-15 NKJV)
God told Solomon – “When trouble comes – pray!” “When difficulties persist – pray!” The Old Testament is a historical record of God’s faithfulness in answering the prayers of His people. It has never been the size of God’s people, their wealth, their collective intelligence, or their strength that has turned the tide against insurmountable odds. No, it has been humble repentance and earnest prayer which proclaims full dependency upon the one true and living God who alone can save. This is what Paul knew, and this is what he was exhorting young Timothy to instill in those he was leading.
Prayer changes the course of nations – because prayer brings us to the One who alone can change our hearts!
Lord, forgive us as a nation for neglecting to honor You as the source of all life and all the blessings we have enjoyed. We humbly repent and confess that we have neglected You, profaned Your Sabbath, dishonored our neighbor, neglected the poor, and not taken an adequate stand for the orphan, the widow, the elderly, and the unborn. Pour out Your Holy Spirit upon us and turn Your Church in America back to Your heart! May we seek You with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and may You once again reign down upon us with Your mercy and grace. Bring a mighty awakening in our land once again so that men and women may be saved and come to the full knowledge of the truth.
In Jesus Name!