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I looked for someone

God operates from his character. He operates from who he is - nothing more or less. As Paul said,

'If we are not faithful, he will still be faithful, because he ·must be true to who he is [cannot deny/disown himself].'' 2 Timothy 2:13.EXB

Understanding the nature of God as he descibes himself is therefore paramount to understanding his words to us and the world in general.

God in the old testament did not change in the New. Everything from the old to the new is just the outworking of one big plan - the same he had from the start. This undertanding would help us realise that Jesus though he was the embodiment of the nature and character of his Father, his arrival in our world did not nulify the nature and character of his father. He came to fulfil God-the-father's plan not to replace his person. [John 14:10 - 11]

The Father (YHWH) describes himself as this:

''Adonai passed before him [Moses] and proclaimed: “YUD-HEH-VAV-HEH!!! Yud-Heh-Vav-Heh [Adonai] is God, merciful and compassionate, slow to anger, rich in grace and truth; showing grace to the thousandth generation, forgiving offenses, crimes and sins; yet not exonerating the guilty, but causing the negative effects of the parents’ offenses to be experienced by their children and grandchildren, and even by the third and fourth generations.” Exodus 34:6-8

The above is who he is. That is YHWH's description of himself.

  1. So he is merciful and compassionate

  2. slow to anger

  3. rich in grace and truth [showing grace to the thousandth generation]

  4. forgiving offenses, crimes and sins

  5. yet not exonerating the guilty,

  6. causing the negative effects of the parents’ offenses to be experienced by their children and grandchildren, and even by the third and fourth generations

The part I would appreciate our focus is ''forgiving offenses, crimes and sins; yet not exonerating the guilty'' This line is God's reason for a prophet. God always seeks someone who will according to his moral law, find an a way for him (i.e. God ) to have mercy, to forgive rather than to have to punish or destroy. This simple line is the very heart of the Father revealed. It is the reason for all the prophets of old and the purpose of Jesus our saviour. This is the foundation of the Gospel of the Kingdom that Jesus brought.

Why am I stressing this? Because to truly understand prophecy, we must understand the person who inspires the Prophets. We can become too familiar with some scripture verses that their implication gets lost to us. One of those is this in Ezekiel 22:29-31:

''The people of the land practice extortion and commit robbery; they oppress the poor and needy and mistreat the foreigner, denying them justice.

I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one. 31 So I will pour out my wrath on them and consume them with my fiery anger, bringing down on their own heads all they have done, declares the Sovereign Lord.”

The striking thing is that the Lord is saying the people's offences have reached a stage that he - as the righteous God - MUST execute judgement against them; BUT he would rather not have to do that. YHWH would rather someone stands in as a Defence Counsel and bring up a case why he would not have to punish. If there is no one, he as Judge would have to judge and issue the punishment deserved.

So God needs a person who would warn his fellow people to repent and that would also stand as their defence attorney. Hence the Prophet that pronounces YHWH's immenient judgement, is also the one you will find pleading with YHWH in prayer for thier salvation.

''So he said he would destroy them—

had not Moses, his chosen one,

stood in the breach (broken part fo a thing/wall) before him

to keep his wrath from destroying them.''Psalm 106:23

The call to repair the walls of Jerusalem (the Kingdom) and bring unity to the body of Christ, is God's cry not just for the Glory of the Kingdom, but an effort to to prevent so many of this same Kingdom from being taken up in the judgement that would come on this world. Disunity is a breach in the wall.

Jesus is the Son of God and himself God, but while on earth, he also carried out the ministry of a Prophet. Not only did he warn the people, he also showed the way to escape the punishment - that way was the good message about the KINGDOM. [Matthew 4:17]

The message Jesus preached was the message of the Kingdom. The good news that God's wrath will be appeased by his sacrifice and the way into relationship with God had come, did not stop him from informing them of the impending danger.

He said

''Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.

“Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.'' Matthew 24:7-14

A warning that the darkness of the times would cause many people's love for God (a love that spills into love for fellow men), to become inoperative. Understanding this role as mouthpieces of God means we must all take the commission to show of the way of salvation and into the Kingdom for what it is: a prophetic call to stand in the gap for the world.

From the time Jesus started preaching the message of the Kingdom, his next step was recuiting people to join him in this work.

''From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.”

Jesus Calls His First Disciples. '' As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” Matthew 4: 17 - 19

God has sent his prophets because he would rather have mercy. He would rather all men be saved.

As Hosea states this responsibility clearly:

''The prophet, along with my God,

is the watchman over Ephraim,

yet snares await him on all his paths,

and hostility in the house of his God.''

Every warning, every correction, every call to the Kingdom, to ministry, and every recruiting of labourers into the work of sharing the good news is (and should be) from an understanding of the heart of YHWH who earnestly searches ''for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it''. Because He is ''the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished''

It is from this heart of understanding we approach the great commisssion and judge every word of prophecy that YHWH sends.

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