Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Confession & Forgiving Grace

then hear from heaven your dwelling place their prayer and their pleas, and maintain their cause and forgive your people who have sinned against you.
2 Chronicles 6:39

Solomon's prayer at the dedication of the temple is also a great picture of grace. Like David his father, Solomon had a deep grasp of God's grace. Most of the prayer is a call for God to be gracious to Israel in their sins. It asks God to hear prayer and forgive, implying that prayers in the temple would be fixed on confession and repentance (2 Chron. 6:21). This is presented through seven "cases" where grace must come as people pray to God.

These include: 1) sinning against a neighbor (2 Chron. 6:22-23), 2) suffering at the defeat by an enemy because of sin (2 Chron. 6:24-25), 3) drought as judgment against sin (2 Chron. 6:26-27), 4) famine as judgment against sin (2 Chron. 6:28-31), 5) foreign God-fearers who call on God for grace... gentiles whom God was willing to treat as part of His people because of their worship (2 Chron. 6:32-33), 6) defensive battles where armies needed protection and skill for victory (2 Chron. 6:34-35), and 7) sinful conditions that led to captivity by an enemy in the curses of the covenant (2 Chron. 6:36-39). Grace and forgiveness was the primary need. 

If the pattern for prayerful confession, repentance, and pleading for forgiving grace compelled Solomon at the dedication of the temple, what does it say for me today? Solomon saw the need with the countless sacrifices at the temple starting at the day Israel dedicated it to the worship of Yahweh. I know it in the full and complete sacrifice and resurrection of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

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