And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments; We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments: (Daniel 9:4-5 KJV)
Daniel has complete faith when praying to his God. He makes his confession before praising God, acknowledging God’s power, promises and mercy. To those that love Him. Please, keep that in mind.
Following Daniel’s personal confession, he mentions the sins of his people. He doesn’t list them by name, date or by severity. He lists them by type – iniquity, wickedly, rebelled, departing from God’s precepts and His judgments.
Find yourself in there somewhere? I certainly found myself. Thanks be to God, not in all of them! Greater thanks to Him for His forgiveness. That’s the mercy that is available to those that love Him, and I do.
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. (Daniel 9:6 KJV)
There are people sent by God to tell us about His precepts from His word. These preachers who are sent (Romans 10:15) speak to the country’s leaders, national and local. They speak to the heads of households, and to all the people of the land.
At this point in our history, there is no Christian preacher reaching across our land. In my lifetime I have heard such men. They have counseled presidents, they have opened sessions of congress. Those days are gone. Today, using the name of Jesus Christ in public prayer engenders in the least public dismay and at the most lawsuits.
Forget for a moment that the majority of the population of this nation still overwhelmingly label themselves Christian. Look instead at how they display that in worship. Where do these same citizens spend the Lord’s Day?
Some will look upon this as being judgmental. Take another look at the end of verse 5: thy judgments. Yep. There’s that word. Think about it for a moment – would you rather be reminded by me (and many others) that God has defined requirements, or stand before Him unprepared?
Thanks, but I do appreciate my Pastor’s exhortations and admonitions. They are very similar to the ones I give to the students in my Sunday School class. Quite similar to what I write here.
Some may, as Daniel did, have their prayers answered by God’s messenger. He had much to tell generations that followed him. We have those same words, those same admonitions, those same instructions to follow. They are very clear and everything else hinges on them:
Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. (Matthew 22:36-40 KJV)