God may be looking for someone to tell Him what for. Upon hearing that you may think, “We should not talk to God that way, it is disrespectful.” Or, “I’d never tell God off.”
As a rule, giving God advice, may not be a good idea. However, there was a time when God looked for someone to persuade Him, and He may be doing so again.
Throughout the Old Testament, God had an up and down relationship with Israel. They will serve Him, then turn to other Gods, backslide, follow Baal, repent, obey God, get into sin, worship someone else, repent… and so on. It was a cycle that lasted centuries.
There came the point when God’s longsuffering was drawing short. Judgment was coming, but God looked for someone to get in the way. Ezekiel 22:30, “And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.”
This standing “in the gap before me” had happened before with surprising results. Psalms 106:23, “Therefore he said that he would destroy them, had not Moses his chosen stood before him in the breach, to turn away his wrath, lest he should destroy them.”
Notice the similarities in the verses. Both times God talks about destroying the people, and someone standing before Him.
How did Moses stand in the gap? What did Moses do?
God used Moses to take the people out of Egypt. Through ten horrible plagues and destroying the most massive military might on planet earth by drowning them in the Red Sea, God delivered the Hebrews.
On the way to the Promised Land, God takes Israel to Mt. Sinai to give them the law. Moses goes to the top of the mountain, and God writes out the ten commandments.
While Moses is gone, the people get restless. They go to the point of making a golden calf and worshipping it. They even announce that this god of gold had delivered them from the Egyptians.
Even counting the 40 days of Moses on the mount, they are only eight or nine weeks removed from witnessing all the miracles, the destruction of the Egyptian army, and God’s deliverance. We are not talking about decades here, we are talking about two months, but they had forgotten what God had done for them and made their own god.
God is fit to be tied. He is furious. He tells Moses He will destroy them all and start over with Moses’ descendants (Exodus 32:10).
Moses proceeds to stand in the gap. He pleads with God not to destroy them. He asks God about how He would look to the Egyptians. Could the Egyptians understand God’s love if you do all these things to deliver the Jews and then kill them all a few weeks later? He reminds God of the promises God gave to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob about multiplying them. (Exodus 32:11-13).
After Moses plea is one of the most fascinating verses in all of Scripture, Exodus 32:14, “And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people.”
God cannot sin, and we could segue here to the verse “Be ye angry and sin not…” (Ephesians 4:26), but we are here to talk about standing in the gap.
Moses stood in the breach, and God withheld judgment. Later, from Ezekiel (see above), we learn God looked for someone to stand in the gap and do what Moses did, but He found no one.
Sitting here, all I did was open a news app on my phone. Here is what came up – continued riots in Portland, an explosion in Seattle injuring police, the headline – “hourslong standoff continues at Texas home where 3 officers shot.” COVID-19 in my county have tripled in three weeks. Another app – wildfires in California, more calls to defund the police, six volcanic eruptions around the globe over the weekend.
People love talking about God’s love, but we cannot forget that even though God is love, He is also a consuming fire (1 John 4:8; Hebrews 12:29).
We do not like being judged, but God is the ultimate judge, and from time to time, He must put on His robe and execute judgment.
Everyone knows 2020 is an unprecedented year. Was the turning of the calendar when God stopped looking for gap people? Is God’s hand of judgment already flexing its muscles?
I am asking all Christians to stand in the gap. 2 Chronicles 7:14, “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.”
Is God still looking for gap people? I sure do hope so.
Preacher Johnson is Pastor of Countryside Baptist Church in Parke County Indiana. Website: www.preachers-point.com; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Mail: 410 S. Jefferson St. Rockville IN 47872. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Timothy-Preacher-Johnson-101171088326638.