Angus Buchan has called for one million Christians to gather for prayer on the 22nd April 2017 to ‘call upon The Lord to bring justice, peace and hope to our beloved South Africa‘. Why should we go?
Let me say up front that I support this initiative, and the reason I am not going is because my wife and I are caring for our two small granddaughters so our son and daughter-in-law can go.
In Old Testament times, the whole nation of Israel was sometimes called to assemble, either to hear what God had to say to them or to intercede in a time of national calamity. The New Testament people of God responded to crisis in the same way. When the authorities commanded Peter and John to stop preaching about Jesus, the Christians assembled and ‘raised their voices together in prayer to God’ (Acts 4:24). This was their first response to crisis, but not their only response. Listen to how they concluded their prayers:
“Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” (Acts 4:29-30) In other words, they asked God to empower them to speak His Word and then to do what they couldn’t do and perform a miracle! And God responded straight away by physically shaking the place where they were meeting and by filling them with power from on high.
Why then should Christians go in their hundreds of thousands to the ‘It’s time’ prayer gathering?
- A huge gathering like this represents the church across the nation and declares with one voice “Almighty God, we are dependent on you. We can do little without your intervention and we acknowledge this.”
- There is the request on behalf of the whole church; “Father God, please speak to us and to our nation for we are desperate to hear from you Lord.”
- There is the urgent plea of “In Jesus mighty name, please come, Holy Spirit of the living God, and fill us with power from on high so that we can proclaim your Word with boldness and effectiveness.”
It is indeed time for the church of the Lord Jesus Christ to come together and pray with one mind and voice. It is indeed time for all Christians in our land to raise our voices and speak into whatever our circles of influence may be. It is indeed time for us to have faith in Almighty God to intervene decisively in our nation. It is indeed time.
‘“But for you who revere my name, the sun (Son) of righteousness will rise with healing in its (His) wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall. Then you will trample down the wicked; they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I do these things,” says the LORD ALMIGHTY’. Malachi 4:2-3