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We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments” (Daniel 9:5).
Text: Daniel 9:4-10
Belonging or associating with a group makes us collectively liable to whatever happens to the group. A team shares the praise for success and the blame for failure together irrespective of who was primarily responsible for the success or failure. This is the principle of collective responsibility and it is what makes or mars a group.
Daniel, by virtue of being a Jew, recognised this. Even though as an individual, he was righteous and enjoyed a special privilege with God as His prophet, he did not fail to fully identify with the sins and failures of the Jewish people which brought them into the Babylonian captivity. Our text focuses on his intercession and plea for God’s mercy, pardon and restoration of the Jews. In his prayer, Daniel collectively confessed the sin of the whole nation without any air of aloofness or a ‘holier-than-thou’ attitude.
Christians cannot afford to be indifferent to whatever goes on in their nations and world generally. A lot is going on in our world and nations at the moment that needs the gracious and merciful intervention of God. Many of these things are due to the sins and moral failures of the whole society. As nations turn their backs to God in sin and rebellion, we are experiencing the catastrophic consequences of such rebellion. What we need now is the mercy of God that will stay the hands of evil and bring reliefs to our lands. And this can only come if we turn to God in prayer of repentance.
As we plead for God’s mercy, we cannot completely exonerate ourselves from the sins of the land. Like Daniel, we have to take the lead in confessing the sins of our lands and asking God for mercy and forgiveness. If we will collectively and sincerely plead for mercy with humility and earnestness, God will certainly hear our prayers and heal our land.
Thought for the day
True intercession is not just a third-party transaction.