What a loving Father You are. You instruct gently, and spell out exactly, what the truth is. You teach Your children how to do what will bring them the greatest reward. You remind them: “If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the best from the land.”
You spell out the rewards and the consequences over and over again. When they become disobedient, You send others, prophets, to remind them and warn them off the destructive path and back onto the path of blessing.
Even when they are immersed in their sin and being obstinate, You offer them forgiveness and a way back into Your grace and favor. “Come, let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be as wool.”
Scarlet and crimson are bright and deep shades of red. Trying to get a red wine stain or a bloodstain out of something is difficult. And my sin stains me like that. But You tell me You can cleanse me as white as snow: sparkling, pure, glistening, frosty snow. You can remove my sin and its stain to make me as white as the softest, purest lamb’s wool!
“But if you resist and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword.” That is the consequence of disobedience. Who would choose that? Who would give up the blessing of Your provision and favor, in order to be devoured by death?
And yet, the Israelites did just that, continuing in idolatry. They turned away from You. In pursuit of other gods, they continued to make meaningless offerings to You as one of the many “little g” gods they worshipped. Meaningless because their hearts did not belong to You any longer.
And You brought judgment. Because of Your righteous character, You had to uphold justice and be true to Your Word. They did not understand until it was too late.
Father, I believe my country has been blessed and protected by You because we trusted in You. But now, we have turned away as a nation, “resisting and rebelling.“ We no longer honor or even acknowledge You.
You have sent a warning. You have sent people who have tried to call America back. But we have not returned. We have chosen the path away from You. And You will bring judgment.
Before it is too late, Father, I pray my nation will turn to You. Bring us leaders with godly values. Open our eyes to our sin and give us repentant hearts. “Come, [America], let us walk in the light of the Lord.” Amen