Then the Lord appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice. When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people, if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. (2 Chronicles 7:12-14)
It had been months, maybe years, that had passed since Solomon's prayer of dedication for the temple (2 Chronicles 6). Several other building projects had been completed after the temple (2 Chronicles 7:11; 8:1). Then after all this time, God told Solomon that He had heard his prayer. In the next several verses (2 Chronicles 7: 13–15), the Lord reviews and answers the petitions of Solomon (2 Chronicles 6:14–42). Solomon’s prayers had been heard and would be answered, but there were conditions (2 Chronicles 7:14).
How often do we look for immediate answers to our prayers and, when nothing happens, wonder if God has heard us? God does hear, and He will provide for us. We must trust that God will answer at the proper time.
As the people received Solomon’s blessing, they stood; as Solomon prayed, he knelt (2 Chronicles 6:13). Both standing and kneeling are acts of reverence. Acts of reverence make us feel more worshipful, and they let others see that we are honoring God. When you stand or kneel in church or at prayer, make these actions more than mere forms prescribed by tradition. Let them indicate your love for God.
In chapter 6 of 2 Chronicles, Solomon asked God to make provisions for the people when they sinned. God answered with four conditions for forgiveness: (1) humble yourself by admitting your sins, (2) pray to God, asking for forgiveness, (3) seek God continually, and (4) turn from sinful behavior. True repentance is more than talk--it is changed behavior. Whether we sin individually, as a group, or as a nation, following these steps will lead to forgiveness. God will answer our earnest prayers.
Word Focus: pray - (Heb. palal) (2 Chronicles 7:14; Genesis 20:7; Numbers 21:7; 1 Kings 8:44; Isaiah 16:12; Jeremiah 7:16) H6419: The Hebrew verb translated pray in God’s promise concerning the revival of Israel (2 Chronicles 7:14) can also mean “to intervene,” “to interpose,” “to arbitrate,” or even “to judge.” The Lord was asking His people to intercede for others in their prayers.
During the dedication of the temple, Solomon modeled intercessory prayer (2 Chronicles 6:3–42). He pleaded with God on behalf of the people and continued to pray with determination until the Lord answered. According to the Lord, this type of prayer would be the catalyst for revival and restoration in the future (Daniel 9:3–19).
Father God, it is my prayer today that revival and restoration will take place in this wicked and sinful world that I live in. Lord I know that for this to take place that I must humble myself in prayer to You and repent of all my sins. I ask You Lord to search my heart for anything that would be a stumbling block for revival. Lord, send a great Revival to this nation, and let it begin in me. I pray this all in Jesus' name. Amen.
References: NKJV Holy Bible, Life Application Bible (NIV), the Nelson Study Bible.