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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Healing: Prayers of National Repentance Part II

Daniel continues in the prayer in Chapter 9, that will lead to the healing and restoration of Israel back to

1. Who She is as a Nation and
2. A recognition of what she has done which caused the Captivity and
3. The Supplication for God's Healing of the nations and return from Exile.

When Daniel makes the supplication to the God of Heaven, as has been mentioned, he is aware that the timing of the Return according to Jeremiah is at hand, and that the Lord is faithful:

I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem. Dan 9:2

...the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments; Dan 9:4

Here is a critical issue in the healing of the Nation of Israel: THE ACKNOWLEDGMENT of THE COVENANT. The COVENANT is EVERLASTING and holy and has been from the beginning. This means that the 'RIGHT' state of Israel is when she is keeping COVENANT with her GOD. When Israel moved away from GOD 'missing the mark', a definition of sin and national sin, then she was in a 'diseased' state, and the intervention of God became necessary to bring her back into a whole and right state.

Blut und Boden

In Germany in WWII, there was a concept of 'blut und boden' or blood and soil, which entailed the identity of the German people or 'Volk' being so tied up in the land they lived in and on, that to be German was to be on Aryan soil, and to be on Aryan soil was to be German by necessity. This concept, many are not aware gave rise to the modern environmental movement, but caused a severe persecution of the Jews to drive them out of the bloodlines (blut) of Europe and off of the land (boden) to create a pure 'oneness' of people, spirit and land.(See Blood and Soil In the case of Germany, the concept was used against the Jewish people.

In God's Covenant with the Chosen people though throughout history, the promise of the Seed and Land, a Jewish form of blut und boden, was essentially different though because it was holy, set apart, in the purposes of GOD and meant for the salvation of the world. The late German form was merely an emulation of the COVENANT, essentially opposite from the COVENANT of the Everlasting nation and meant not for the preservation of the Jews, the oracles and vehicles of the Word of God but for the opposite. Why is this important in the discussion of the healing of a nation? Because there really is an issue of the healing of the Jewish nation being tied to them being:

1. In the Covenant
2. In Obedience
3. In the Land

in order to be in that perfect, healed state, an equilibrium and balance when all is as it should be, when they are in a 'RIGHTEOUS' state.

Why does this matter in the national healing of Israel? Because Israel, to be healed needed to be back in the Land!. It was part of her 'wholeness'. Is this true for all nations? It is somewhat difficult to answer because virtually all nations are on their own land. During WWII, a few monarchs and heads of state had to flee Nazi occupation: without their heads, nations such as the Netherlands felt downtrodden and hopeless: they were in a dissensioned state.
When their rightful leadership was back in place, their form of government, etc, they began to HEAL as a nation. Israel is a special case of the nations having survived in and out of the land for 5000 years, depending on how some historians count origins.


The Prophet Repents for a Nation in Captivity

One of the first things to realize as Daniel prays, is that without their 'permission' or even knowledge, Daniel, the prophet of exile takes it upon himself
to pray vicariously in repentance for the good of the nation. Why would God receive Daniel's prayer in this way? Would it not take the whole nation repenting? Well, it happens both ways: in Daniel, the prophet prays in Proxy as a representative of the whole nation of Israel in Babylonian captivity. In Esther we see the whole nation called to prayer for their self-defense and protection, including severe repentance.

We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments:
Neither have we hearkened unto thy servants the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land.
O Lord, righteousness [belongeth] unto thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at this day; to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, [that are] near, and [that are] far off, through all the countries whither thou hast driven them, because of their trespass that they have trespassed against thee.O Lord, to us [belongeth] confusion of face, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee.-Dan 9:5-8

In Esther:

And in every province, whithersoever the king's commandment and his decree came, [there was] great mourning among the Jews, and fasting, and weeping, and wailing; and many lay in sackcloth and ashes. Esther 4:3

Now in Daniel, the Prophet stands in proxy of the people, declaring unto God in heart and soul, his sorrow over his and their sins which set them in captivity to a pagan nation. In Esther, we see both: Esther intercedes with the pagan King Ahasuerus for the nation of Israel, Mordecai 'stands in the gap' for Israel when he sees the nation about to fall to the wicked Haman, and later all Israel mourns, weeps, fasts, wails and lays in sackcloth and ashes, begging for the great hand of God to again defend the beleaguered nation. Is this merely about begging for protection? No, it is also about the healing of the nation beginning with repentance.

If a soldier is wounded on a battlefield, his wounds are not neatly attended to there: he needs to be dragged off the front, to a place of safety and some rest so that he can be healed and made whole. Rest is required. In the case of a nation, they are substantially asking to be 'dragged off the battlefield' to a place of rest where they would be made whole again, by the hand of GOD. REPENTANCE, both via a representative in this case a prophet or a Queen, or leader of Israel (Mordecai), brings the desired intervention and in all three cases, a miraculous healing of the nation. For Daniel, the Repentance is intense and severe and occurs amidst a pagan atmosphere, and risks the wrath of the king and courtiers.

Daniel notes that the nation has fallen to CONFUSION because of rebellion:

O Lord, to us [belongeth] confusion of face, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee.
To the Lord our God [belong] mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him; Dan 8-9

and that the failure to obey the LAW (Torah) of GOD, has resulted in the 'diseased' condition of the captive nation:
Neither have we obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in his laws, which he set before us by his servants the prophets.

Why is national repentance needed? Because a whole nation sinned:
all Israel have transgressed thy law, even by departing, that they might not obey thy voice; therefore the curse is poured upon us, and the oath that [is] written in the law of Moses the servant of God, because we have sinned against him.

We will continue with this study again shortly but a few points in summary are applicable not only to the Israel of long ago, but to all nations today:

1. We have fallen to a 'curse' by
-failure to hear God,
- failure to walk in His Law or Way
[I am the WAY , the TRUTH and the LIFE Jn14:6)

2. The 'Curse' of National Sin results in
-Inability to hear from GOD
-Captivity and brutal treatment
-A lack of Clarity as in confusion, lack in decision-making
-Lack of leadership and direction
-'Dissension' of the fabric of society

3. Both Prophets and Ministers of God need to Repent for the Nation and Themselves

4. The Nation Must Repent in Seriousness
-Calling on God with Praise, Fasting and Supplication
- Turning from the way they are on by obeying Christ's commands
-Spending the time necessary to seek out GOD's forgiveness and will.


This study will continue at a later date. by Elizabeth Kirkley Best
2. 84.