I was listening to a sermon1 preached by Matt Chandler of the Village Church in Dallas, TX, in August 2014, entitled “Holiness and Humility” in which he looked at the life of Uzziah, king of Judah, from 2 Chronicles 26.
There is much to consider in this text and in the sermon and I would encourage you to listen to it.
One of things that stood out to me was this.
We have no hope but the gospel. We have no hope but Christ breaking down the walls of hostility between us. That’s Ferguson. That’s Iraq right now. Let me tell you what I’m praying for. I’ve just been reading over and over again about the conversion of Saul of Tarsus. Murdering Christians? Check. Pretty well known terrorist among evangelical followers of Christ in the first century? Check. Brutal? Check. Powerfully converted and becomes one of the greatest missionaries of the Christian faith? Check.
So I feel powerless about what’s going on in Iraq, but I’m certainly praying God would raise up a Paul out of the leadership of the ISIS. Why not? God is God. He has done it before. Why won’t he do it in our day? Let’s ask. Steeped in the fear of the Lord. Walking in humility. Might we grow in wisdom and knowledge. Might we grow in the courage that comes in knowing our God is able. Might we dream big, might we work hard, and might we guard our hearts. Let’s pray.
Lord God, I pray that Your Spirit would be working in the lives of the people in Iraq, Syria, and the other areas where ISIS is active and that they would be drawn to You for the salvation found only in Your Son Jesus and that You would be calling out a “Paul” for their generation and people, who would mightily proclaim the truth of the gospel of Jesus to the people and that You would work mightily through him as he partners with You in the ministry of reconciliation. May Your will be done in the name of Jesus, AMEN.
1 Chandler, Matt. “Holiness and Humility.” The Village Church. 17 Aug. 2014.