Thanks Laz, for reminding me of these verse and giving me the catalyst for today’s devotional.
CONTEXT: This chapter is divided into three parts by Matthew Henry: Here are three separate messages which God entrusts the prophet to deliver concerning Judah and Jerusalem, and all to the same purport, to show them their sins and the judgments that were coming upon them for those sins. I. Here is a catalogue of their sins, by which they had exposed themselves to shame and for which God would bring them to ruin (v. 1-16). II. They are here compared to dross, and are condemned as dross to the fire (v. 17-22). III. All orders and degrees of men among them are here found guilty of the neglect of the duty of their place and of having contributed to the national guilt, which therefore, since none appeared as intercessors, they must all expect to share in the punishment of (v. 23-31).
The basic theme of our main text is this that God wanted folks to step up and intercede for Judah but no one would man-up. Proof of the total moral collapse of the nation.
I sought, very earnestly and diligently; spoken of God after the manner of man.
A man; any one.
Amongst them; among princes, prophets, priests, or people.
That should make up the hedge; to repair the breach, and prevent further mischief.
Stand in the gap; that might interpose between a sinful, suffering people and their offended God, and entreat for mercy, that the land might not be destroyed.
But I found none; all were corrupted, not one but obstinately went on to sin and provoke me.
And I sought for a man among them,…. among the princes, priests, prophets, and people of the land, who acted the part as above described; for otherwise, no doubt, there were good people in the land, as Jeremiah, Baruch, and others, but not among these:
that should make up the hedge; that was broken down by the transgressions of the people, who exceeded all bounds of law and justice; one that would restrain them from sinning, and reform them, and set them a good example; one, as the Targum has it,
“whose works were good;”
a good man, that would endeavour by his influence to stop the breaking in of sin, and the consequences of it:
and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it; in the gap that sin had made, at which the Lord was entering as a man of war to destroy the transgressors; one that should present himself to the Lord on the behalf of the people; seek mercy for them, as the Targum; interpose between God and them, and act the part of an intercessor; pray for them, as Moses did for the people of Israel, that he would not destroy them; see Psalm 106:23,
but I found none; no reformer of them, no repairer of the breach, nor restorer of paths, to dwell in; no intercessor for them, as Abraham for Sodom, Moses for Israel; or any, like Aaron, that stood between the living and the dead to stay the plague.
Because God is wholly righteous He demands and is entitled to recompense for man’s iniquity against Him. What is most amazing is God never gives us the full wrath we deserve.
Is God looking for people to be intercessors and Stand in the Gap today? Consider the state of our nation:
1. Complete Moral Decay
2. Corrupt Government Leaders
3. False Prophets and Churches Leaders Abound
4. The Wall is broken down and the enemy is pouring in.