If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.2 Chronicles 7:14 KJV
You hear this verse tons of times at patriotic Christian rallies by pastors or teachers that want God to turn our country away from moral decline. The premise is if we repent from our sins and pray, God will make this country moral or “great again”. Yet if we look at the context of this verse, this promise isn’t for us. We need to use a little hermeneutics to understand the text.
Here is the context:
- King Solomon had finished building the Jewish Temple. The temple symbolized God’s presence in Israel.
- The priests sacrificed in the temple to dedicate it to God and the LORD accepted their sacrifice by sending fire from heaven.
- King Solomon had just prayed for God to bless the temple in 1 Kings 8:12-54.
- God appeared to Solomon by night to tell him that He accepted his prayer.
- The words “my people” and “their land” refer the the people and nation of Israel.
- In the Old Testament God said in Deuteronomy that if his people sinned he would send them into exile. If they repented He would bring them back. This happened after the Babylonian captivity. They repented and then God brought them back into the land.
What are the principles of this passage?
- God is faithful to His covenant promises.
- God requires repentance and faith to be right with Him.
Did this passage mean that God would heal his people’s land if they repented? Yes, to the nation of Israel. We are not Israel and this is not the Old Testament. We live in the New Testament era. God is faithful to his covenant promises. the New Covenant promise is if we repent of our sin and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ to forgive us of our sin, we will be forgiven of all our sin, God will indwell in us with His Holy Spirit, we will be the new temple of God, and we will have eternal life with Him forever. That is a much better covenant promise we can take to heart. Still if we want God to bless America, let us pray for the lost and share the gospel.
I hope that this has blessed you. Please feel free to comment in the comment section. Please no cursing for pornography. Also feel free to share this post to your friends who need it, or like it. If you want to contact me, you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any question you want. Also please feel free to look at the resource page to look at The Using Hermeneutics Series. the book series is designed to teach you biblical interpretation through demonstration. Lord bless you.