I have recently had the strong sense that our nation is in the balance and can totally implode without divine intervention! There are at least four significant potential scenarios in the national elections, that if any were to be played out, would trigger violence, unlike anything we have seen since the 19th century Civil War.
Some secular experts, who deal with geo/political/economic issues, predict that if Trump were to win only through the Electoral college, losing the popular vote, we would see a national uprising that could call for a change to the Constitution. The far-left radicals strongly believe that another Trump term is an existential threat to their way of life. They will do anything to stop it.
Another scenario is if Biden wins by a narrow margin, and Trump contests the election by claiming voter fraud and refuses to vacate the White House. Such a scenario would incite America's alternate right to action, which can lead to major unrest.
In my opinion, another possible scenario would be Biden winning by a landslide. This would embolden radical groups like Antifa, who would then step up their violent subversive protests (as we have seen in Portland). If such radical groups believe that Biden's administration doesn't go far enough to reform or deconstruct the nation, we would see violent uprisings, similar or higher in scope than Portland, spread to every major city in America.
Another scenario is that if Trump wins by a landslide, then the violent revolutionaries in the nation will become desperate and engage in greater measures to overthrow the present political and economic system.
Hence, I opine that there is a looming existential threat to the USA, no matter how the national election turns out. That being said, what we have seen recently in terms of civil unrest is nothing compared to what is looming. Therefore, there is a great need for divine restraint or spiritual awakening.
Of course, God's kingdom does not depend upon political or revolutionary tactics to heal a particular land. Jesus said in John 18:36 that His kingdom is not of this world. Notice He did not say His kingdom is not in this world, but that it is not of this world. This means His kingdom does not originate or receive its power and authority from any human government or person. Thus, He uses other means than mere earthly politics to manifest His will in nations.
If we review the commonly quoted passage in 2 Chronicles 7:14, we will gain much insight into God's cultural transformation method. God spoke to King Solomon saying, "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 will heal their land."
It is important to note that this passage shows that repentance has to first come from God's people (in this case, the church) before there is any external blessing. Hence the internal transformation that has to precede any visible results. Even though this passage was written to the nation of Israel, we can still apply the principles of this passage to our nation. America already has a critical mass—more than 20 percent of the population—of bible-believing churches and Christians (even though we are not a theocracy, the church wields major influence in the life of the nation).
Abraham was able to intercede for a people group/city, not in covenant with Jehovah. That group would have been spared God's judgment if there were at least 10 righteous people (Gen. 18). In America, even in proportion to Sodom, I believe we have much more than the 10 people based on our comparative numeric population percentage. Furthermore, Jeremiah 18:7-10 shows that any nation in general that turns away from wickedness will experience God's mercy.
The prayer focus that is based upon 2 Chronicles 7:14 has 5 major components:
- The, "If my people" phrase shows that the prayer focus has to be towards the church more than the nation. Unfortunately, contrary to this passage, the primary focus of many corporate prayer events are merely for the national elections or for better public policy. While the elections are important, I believe that it is offensive to God for half baked, half-committed, back-slidden Christians to pray for the elections. Their primary motive likely has to do with not having persecution so they can continue to live a comfortable "Christian" life without paying the price. Since the focus of this passage is God's people, then by implication, the key for national healing is not merely a change in presidents, but a shift in the attitude of the church towards God. Consequently, the state of a community, city and nation is a direct reflection of the state of the church in that region.
- The "Will humble themselves" phrase shows that the Church in North America has to repent of pride. This arrogance comes with our national economic affluence and power, as well as a lack of dependence upon God for its provision and sustenance.
- The phrase, "Will pray and seek my face," illustrates that the primary focus of the gathering must be seeking God's face more than His hand or His blessing. Hence the focus should not be praying for the United States, the elections or for peace and prosperity. There should be repentance in which the church turns away from seeking its own benefit more than God's plan and kingdom. There must be a shift away from seeking the blessing more than the one who blesses.
- The phrase, "Turn from their wicked ways" highlights the need for God's people to turn back to God and repent. Since the nation is not a Christian nation, the focus cannot be upon praying for the country to return. The Church needs to repent since the Church is a holy nation under God (1 Pet. 2:9). The Church needs to repent of things like indifference to the things of God, lack of passion for His face and His presence, lack of true holiness, lack of private and corporate prayer and the lack of reading of the Scripture. There needs to be repentance of systemic issues related to culture and racism in the church, lack of caring for the poor, the immigrants, the sin of abortion, high rates of divorce and being echoes of group-think instead of being prophetically inclined to speak the truth in love.
- The phrase, "Heal the land" indicates that healing the land is a result that takes place after the proper vertical consecration toward God occurs. Hence the vertical comes before the horizontal effect. Thus, healing the land comes automatically after the Church repents and maintains a proper upright posture towards God.
In response to the above, we are calling for a national prayer initiative called, "Heal the Land." It involves corporate prayer and fasting, starting from the beginning of September until the day after the national election with three online national prayer initiatives.
The dates are September 16th, October 14th and November 1st, all from 7-9 pm (EST).
For more information on how you can participate in this significant prayer initiative, please go to USCAL.US.
We are trusting that multiple thousands of churches will engage in corporate prayer together in the USA and beyond (the principles of 2 Chronicles 7:14 are relevant for every nation of the earth, which means that this initiative can be international in its scope.)
My prayer is that the church will repent from abandoning its first love and return to the Lord with all of our heart, mind and soul. Only then will the nations of the earth experience true healing.
Dr. Joseph Mattera is an internationally known author, interpreter of culture and activist/theologian whose mission is to influence leaders who influence nations. He is renowned for addressing current events through the lense of Scripture by applying biblical truths and offering cogent defenses to today's postmodern culture. He leads several organizations, including The United Coalition of Apostolic Leaders (uscal.us). He also has a blog on Charisma News called "The Pulse." To order one of his books or to subscribe to his weekly newsletter go to josephmattera.org.
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