II Chronicles 7:14 - A Literal Verse with a Literal Meaning
Does God mean what He says? Does God say what He means? Absolutely! So what are we to do with II Chronicles 7:14? Claim it! “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.”
What exactly does this verse mean? It means, “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.”
Many will argue this is not a promise for today. I understand the context of the verse. I understand this verse was given to the Old Testament Jew under Solomon. However, it is still applicable for us as God’s children today.
God Never Changes
God never changes. His promises never change. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. Do not be afraid to simply claim the verse.
God gave it to you for a reason, so take advantage of it. II Chronicles 7:14 is a conditional promise. God will do His part, but we must first do our part. If we are not faithful to do our part, God is under no obligation to fulfill His promise. But, if we come to Him in faith, know “. . . that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6b)
So what is our part? How do we accomplish it to make way for God’s blessings? I am not suggesting we accomplish humility as a means of receiving blessings. We are to seek humility because God is God, and for no other reason; however blessing is always a by-product of obedience.
Humility is a simple word, but it is so very necessary when seeking the presence of God. The term, “. . . shall humble themselves . . .” is described as “A primitive root; properly to bend the knee; hence to humiliate, vanquish: - bring down (low), into subjection, under, humble (self), subdue (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance; H3665). The Free Dictionary.com gives us these thoughts: “1. Marked by meekness or modesty in behavior, attitude, or spirit; not arrogant or prideful. 2. Showing deferential or submissive respect . . .3. Low in rank, quality, or station; unpretentious or lowly . . . To curtail or destroy the pride of; humiliate.2. To cause to be meek or modest in spirit.3. To give a lower condition or station to; abase . . . “ How do you measure up?
When we humble ourselves we bend the knee, and bow in worship. We bring ourselves low, and lift high our great God. We bring ourselves into subjection to the King, the supreme ruler of the universe, and we recognize Him as such. This is the beginning of revival, but there is much more.
The next responsibility mentioned in II Chronicles 7:14 is – to pray. Prayer in its simplest form means to ask. Ask God to work in your life. Ask Him to work in your family, your church, and your nation. Ask Him to save the lost, to return backsliders, to send a powerful movement of His Spirit among His people. He is true to His word – “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.” Remember, God means what He says.
Next, in preparation for revival, we are told to seek His face. Whose face? His face. We know from the Word and from practical experience, a change in politics will not save us. We know economic growth will not make a difference. We know that a moral majority will leave the country unchanged. It is God, and God alone who is able to bring lasting change and peace to a nation riddled with failures.
Hosea 6:1 tells us, “Come, and let us return unto the LORD: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up.” Run to Him for healing. Allow Him to be the one to bind your bleeding wounds.
The wise men sought the baby Jesus (Matthew 2:1-11). The woman with the issue of blood sought Jesus in a throng of hundreds (Mark 5:25-29). Zacchaeus sought out Jesus by climbing a sycamore tree (Luke 19:2-5). Nicodemus went seeking Jesus under the cover of darkness (John 3:1,2).
The set of circumstances is different in each case. Different people are involved. The times were different. The locations were different. But yet there are at least two commonalities. These four sought Jesus, but there is yet another common thread in these stories. All four found Jesus. Why? Because they sought Him.
In each case those who sought after Jesus found Him. He promises us that if we seek Him, we will, without fail, find him. Isaiah 55:6 tells us to “Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near." There will be a time when God will no longer be available for the people of earth. Out of all the thousands of promises in the Bible, tomorrow is not one of them. Again, we are told in II Corinthians 6:2, “. . . behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” Yes, Isaiah says we are to seek Him, but the time is now.
David tells us this in I Chronicles 28:9 – “. . . if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever.” Notice there are two promises given here. The first and most precious promise is that if we seek Him, we will find Him. The flip-side of that coin, and second promise is that if we do not seek Him, we will not find Him. Furthermore, if we find Him and forsake Him, He will forsake us. We will not forfeit relationship, but we will definitely forfeit fellowship. It is without a doubt, time to seek the Lord.
Lastly, II Chronicles 7:14 tells us to turn from our wicked ways. The fourth element to this conditional promise is that we be free of sin. Keep short accounts of sin. Strive to follow the Saviour, and honor Him with your life. We have promises regarding this matter as well. I John 1;9 makes it clear that “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” The condition – we must confess. The promise – He is faithful to forgive and cleanse.
But know this – “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me” (Psalm 66:18). “Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.” (Isaiah 59:1, 2).
In other words, holiness is a requirement for revival. Holiness – that is a word we do not often hear in these times. It is however, still in the Bible. Leviticus 20:7 commands us to, “Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.” What about the New Testament? “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy )” I Peter 1:15, 16).
God’s part in all of this? “. . . then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” Do you really want to see God work in your life? Do you really want to see God close the bars in town? Get rid of the porn, and strip joints? Do you really want to see God heal the drug addicts? Perhaps here is a better question. Do you really believe God can do it?
If not, you need to seek Him. You need to get to know who your God really is. The way back is the Way to God. We read in Deuteronomy 4:29, “But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.”
The journey to the face of God will not be easy. It will require your whole heart. It will require your whole soul. Do you hunger and thirst after God? Do you need Him like you need the air you breathe? Do you long for Him in the night? If you do, those deep desires can be satisfied by seeking after Him with all your being.
Jesus says in Matthew 22:37, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” Our entire being is to be centered on Him. The road to revival, whether it be personal or corporate, is not seeking revival, but seeking God. The road is straight and narrow; very hard to stay on, but yet it is possible. You can claim revival today, but only if you are willing to pay the price. Are you willing? That is the question you must answer