Throughout Jeremiah’s “ministry” the Lord was calling for a people to pray the following prayer.
In 560 BC, more than a hundred years after the initial seige of Jerusalem, and a hundred and forty years after the Lord’s Words first came forth through Jeremiah, a man named Daniel discerned from the prophets the heart and purposes of the Lord, and then was constrained to pray the thorough and agonizing prayer of repentance we find in Daniel chapter 9.
Beloved, we’re making a transition that is much greater than the transition of the Jewish people from Babylon to the restoration of an earthly kingdom. We’re making a transition from the captivity of this age to the eternal Kingdom of Jesus.
What follows is the (Daniel 9:4-19) prayer hermeneutically adjusted for American Evangelicalism. We don’t have a hundred years to “pray” it.
DANIEL 9 FOR 21c AMERICAN EVANGELICALISM
“O Lord, great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and with those who keep His commandments,
we have sinned and committed iniquity,
we have done wickedly and rebelled,
even by departing from Your precepts and Your judgments.
Neither have we heeded Your servants the prophets,
nor the precious Words of Your Son, Jesus Christ,
Whom many of our leaders, and fathers and people of the land claim to follow.
We’ve turned our hearts away from those caught in pornography and engaging in the horror of abortion.
We’ve marginalized and even despised the cross that would bring an end to self-determination and the curse of LGBTQ.
We’ve not blessed and stood in the place of intercession for Israel.
We’ve not walked with humility re: our racial sins and the great sins of our fathers, and the fathers of this nation.
We’ve erected idols of self-liberty and national pride that militate against our primary allegiance to You, Father.
We’ve not given ourselves to prayer, and become a people of prayer.
Neither do we heed the foundational teaching of Your Son’s Sermon on the Mount.
O Lord, righteousness belongs to You, but to us shame of face, as it is this day –
to those in the Bible belt,
to the inhabitants of Hollywood,
and all of America, those near and those far off,
captivated by the great idolatries that we have unfaithfully committed against You.
O Lord, to us belongs shame of face,
to our leaders, and our fathers, because we have sinned against You.
To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness,
though we have rebelled against You.
We have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God,
to walk in Your laws,
which You set before us by Your servants the prophets, and by Your Son.
Yes, all of us have transgressed Your law,
and have departed so as not to obey Your voice;
therefore the curse and the oath written in the Word of God has been poured out on us,
because we have sinned against You.
And You have confirmed Your words,
which You spoke against us and against our pundits and false-prophets who condemn us, by bringing upon us a great plague of self-destructive hostility;
for under the whole heaven such has never been done as what is being done in our nation.
As it is written in the Word of God, all this destruction has come upon us;
yet we have not made our prayer before the Lord our God,
that we might turn from our iniquities and understand Your truth.
Therefore the Lord has kept (Galatians 5:15) in mind, and brought it upon us;
for the Lord our God is righteous in all the works which He does,
though we have not obeyed Your voice.
And now, O Lord our God, Who brought Your people out of darkness by the mighty blood of Your Son,
and made Yourself a name, as it is this day –
we have sinned, we have done wickedly!
O Lord, according to all Your righteousness, I pray,
let Your anger and Your fury be turned away from this people,
and those who are called by Your name;
because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers,
Your people, the people of the good news have become a reproach to all those around us.
Now therefore, our God, hear the prayer of Your servant,
and his supplications,
and for the Lord’s sake cause Your face to shine on Your Church,
which is desolate.
O my God, incline Your ear and hear;
open Your eyes and see our desolations;
for we do not present our supplications before You because of our righteous deeds,
but because of Your great mercies.
O Lord, hear!
O Lord, forgive!
O Lord, listen and act!
Do not delay for Your own sake, my God,
for the sake of Your inheritance
and for the sake of the people who are called by Your name.”
JSB • May 16, 2022