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Prayer and the Oil Spill - Let's Include Repentance As We Pray For God's Intervention.

Posted by James P. McGarvey , 28 June 2010 · 1071 views

I am sure many across this nation are praying for the Lord's intervention in the Gulf oil crisis. As we pray for the many obvious needs associated with this disaster, I am wondering if we should not be praying prayers of repentance for the shedding of innocent blood, particularly the mass killings in the abortuaries of our nation. I feel it would be presumption on our part to rule out the possibility that this disaster is an act of judgment for the failure of America to end the legalized killing of our offspring. Could this disaster be an act of mercy on His part, an attempt to get our attention and awaken us from our failure to take His word seriously? Here are some thoughts that have come to my mind as I have considered the shedding of innocent blood, repentance and prayer for the oil spill:
(1) God hates the shedding of innocent blood. “There are six things the Lord hates…hands that shed innocent blood” (Proverbs 6:16,17)
(2) Shedding of innocent blood (premeditated murder – abortion) is first and foremost a personal affront to God. It is an attempt to diminish his Lordship, a violation of His creative act and ownership of His creation. The Scriptures teach that the shed blood of Abel “…cries out to me from the ground” (emphasis mine) said the Lord (Genesis 4:10) and later capital punishment was instituted first and foremost because it was an offense and attack upon God, “for in the image of God has God made man.” Those who sacrificed their children to Molech “defiled my sanctuary and profaned my holy name.” (Leviticus 20:3) And Ezekiel recorded God’s dismay at the killing of those who he valued as His possession – “You took your sons and daughters whom you bore to me and sacrificed them as food to the idols…You slaughtered my children and sacrificed them to the idols.” (Ezekiel 16:20,21)
(3) From God’s perspective, “…bloodshed pollutes the land” (Numbers 35:33). When Israel sacrificed their children to demons (Molech) “They shed innocent blood” and “the land was desecrated by their blood” (Psalm 106:37,38). Lou Engle has said, “Blood pollution comes on the land when innocent blood is shed. That sacrificing of babies is fueling demonization of our nation. A day of reckoning is coming to USA without God’s mercy through intercessors and action to stop abortion.” (The Doctrine of the Shedding of Innocent Blood)
(4) The law required the leaders of Israel to atone for the unsolved murder of an innocent man so that the Lord would “not hold your people guilty of the blood of an innocent man…you will purge from yourselves the guilt of shedding innocent blood.” (Deuteronomy 21:8,9)
(5) Any Israelite that sacrificed his child to Molech was to be put to death. The Lord said, “I will set my face against that man and I will cut him off from his people; for by giving his children to Molech he has defiled my sanctuary and profaned my holy name.”(Leviticus 20:1-5) God judged Judah for the sacrifice of their children to Molech. The Assyrians swept down from the north in judgment. “They have built the high places of Baal to burn their sons in the fire as offerings to Baal…so beware, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when people will no longer call this place Topheth…but the Valley of Slaughter.” (Jeremiah 19:5,6) The linkage between child sacrifice and the Assyrian invasion is also very clear in 2 Kings 17. “The King of Assyria invaded the entire land, marched against Samaria and laid siege to it for three years…” (v. 5) “All this took place because the Israelites had sinned against the Lord their God (v. 7)…They sacrificed their sons and daughters in the fire.” (v. 17) We are arrogant and presumptuous to think that America is less deserving of judgment when we have allowed the slaughter of 52 million children since 1973 and the slaughter continues unabated. “Because God loves, he gets angry. Because he cherishes innocent human life with a burning heart and commands all men everywhere to do the same, his revulsion at the murder of innocents knows no limit, nor does His wrath when it is finally unleashed….For God to warn us of His wrath is another sign of His love. For us to ignore it is a sign of how hardened we have become and how ripe we are to receive His wrath.” (John Ensor, Answering The Call, pg. 62)
(6) Israel was warned not to close their eyes to the sacrifice of children in their nation (Leviticus 20:4-5). The Church and its leaders should act as watchmen as did Ezekiel, warning and speaking out “… to dissuade him from his evil ways in order to save his life.” If we do not sound the warning the Lord will “…hold you [us] accountable for his blood.” (Ezekiel 3:18) I believe that the silence of the pulpits is largely responsible for abortion remaining legal for the last 36 years. Why, because only the power of the Gospel will end abortion. Abortion is first and foremost a spiritual issue. The Church is the only institution that is spiritually equipped to engage and defeat the Satanic forces behind abortion. But failing to acknowledge this truth and fearing man ("it's too divisive", "or political", etc.) more than God, the Church has mimicked the religious leaders of the Good Samaritan story, and walked around the abortion holocaust, leaving 52 million unborn children to die and millions of post-abortive to live with unresolved guilt and shame. The Church needs to begin by repenting of abortion in the Church (250,000 children aborted in the evangelical church annually), repent of its failure to serve the abortion minded through practical compassionate ministry and repent of the silence of the pulpits on this issue. The words of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, written in 1940 of the German Church, could just as well have been written to the 21st century American Church. "The church is guilty of the deaths of the weakest and most defenseless brothers of Jesus Christ. The church must confess that she has desired security and peace, quiet, possession, and honor to which she has no right. She has not born witness to the truth of God and by her silence, she has rendered herself guilty, because of her unwillingness to suffer for what she knows to be right." Bonhoeffer was one of the few who broke the silence and paid with his life The Apostle Paul was very clear in his admonition, “Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.” (Ephesians 5:11)
(7) John Ensor has written these sobering words, “In tracing out the breaking point when God moves from patiently warning to active judgment, Scripture says it is the killing of innocent people, or passively accepting the killing of innocent people, that finally invokes his wrath.” (Answering the Call, pg. 61) As we focus on prayer for God’s intervention in the Gulf oil crisis we cannot afford to neglect what might be His purpose in allowing the oil spill. Isaiah wrote, “When you spread out your hands in prayer, I will hide my eyes from you, even if you offer many prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are full of blood.”(Isaiah 1:15) In light of these truths should we not humble ourselves before the Lord in repentance as we seek Him for help in ending this natural disaster?