Jehovah God of Israel, in heaven above or on earth beneath there is no God like Thee. Great God and Father of Jesus Christ, Thy believing people beseech blessing for the year coming, year of our Lord, 2007, this many years into the age of the new covenant. We, the congregation of Israel, the “city” Thou hast chosen, are from different lands and federations of churches who seek to be faithful to Thee and walk before Thee with all our heart. Redeemed by strong hand and stretched out arm from the furnace of iron, we are Thine inheritance. Thou hast broken the bands of our yoke. And made us to go upright.
For blessing we ask. For a powerful word of favor for us, for our children, and for our churches we make supplication on the threshold of a new year. For spiritual dew and rain upon our land. For threshing that reaches to the vintage, and the vintage to the sowing time.
We plead covenant blessings. Set Thy tabernacle among us. Let Thy soul cherish us. Have respect to us and make us fruitful. Multiply us. May the women be fruitful in the bearing of spiritual children: sons as plants grown up in their youth, daughters as corner stones, polished after the similitude of a palace.
We entreat for victory. For strength to chase the enemies so they fall by the sword of Thy Spirit. For five chasing a hundred, and a hundred putting ten thousand to flight. We ask for faith, the victory over the world.
Walk among us. Be our God; assure us that we are Thy people, apple of Thine eye. Open Thine eyes toward us night and day. O God, bless, be gracious. Show mercy.
Father, although some of us are eating bread of heaven to the full, others of us are famished with spiritual famine. Famine of the Word. No rain falls. Pestilence, blasting, mildew, locusts, caterpillars ravage the lands…. Sermons are without truth, light, joy, life. Or, though true, unaccompanied by the dew of the Spirit to make them fruitful unto assurance and holiness.
Some have had rain in due season so that the land yielded her increase, others among us have sown their seed in vain. What fruit, Lord, from evangelism? Enemies eat the harvest. What converts from missions? Where the new congregations? The trees bear little fruit … spiritually.
It is worse, Lord. Although some of us dwell safely, have peace in their land, and lie down without fear, others are carried away into strange lands. By wild beasts parents are robbed of their children. Others fall into the hands of the enemy. Instead of growing, fellowships become fewer in number; communion of the saints languishes. Even the church’s mighty men are smitten down before the enemies.
Though some rejoice, some are brought very low.
Under Thy heavy hand.
We recognize chastisements. Thy hand comes upon Thy people.
Is this a quarrel of Thy covenant? Art Thou walking contrary to us? Because we have not been reformed by the lesser afflictions, is now Thy face set against us?
We know, Father, that at times Thy dear people suffer afflictions as Thy judgments fall upon the world among whom they live. Because of idolatry and filthiness and foolish talking, uncleanness and covetousness, “the wrath of God falls upon the children of disobedience.” Thy people suffer in those days of visitation too.
But Thy heavy hand…O, it is a hand of love!… also falls upon the disobedience of Thy people. Has Thine anger delivered us to the enemy? Because of our guilt are we afflicted?
Search us, Lord, and know our hearts. Try us, and know our thoughts. See if there be any wicked way in us. Speak, Lord. Thy servants hear.
If heaven is shut up because of our iniquities, Father, show them to us.
Is it our breaking of Thy covenant: not doing all Thy commandments, despising Thy good statutes, abhorring Thy judgments? We have trespassed against our neighbor, our unbelieving neighbors and our believing but sinning neighbors; we have not loved them as we have loved ourselves, have allowed their sins (and ours) to come between us and them. But Thy statutes call us first to love Thee … with all our hearts. We have served other gods, loved them, found pleasure and satisfaction in them. The gods of this world. We have bowed down to gods of stone and the standing images of filthy lucre, of the uncleanness of Baal-Peor, of Sloth. …and all the forms of the god Man, the ubiquitous Antichristian monument “666.”
We have sinned, and done perversely, and committed wickedness.
We acknowledge pride.
We confess the plague of our own hearts.
We are humbled by the perversity of our uncircumcised hearts.
Who is there that does not go wrong? None is without sin.
Covenant-keeping Father, forgive. We bethink ourselves in the ways of our captivity, repent, and make supplication. With all our heart and all our soul we make supplication. Our uncircumcised hearts are humbled… we accept of the punishment of our iniquity. Remember thy covenant; remember thy land; remember Thy people. Cast us not away; destroy us not utterly; do not abhor us. Jehovah, be our God.
Make Thine afflictions profitable for Thy children.
Take away our guilt; impute to us righteousness. Hear thou in heaven, and forgive. Hearken to our cry and to our prayer.
Not for our sakes, but for the sake of Thy servant, Jesus Christ. In His name we pray. The glorious King of Peace of Whom Solomon (whose prayer here we follow) was beautiful type. Toward Thy house we pray, with eyes of our faith on the Holy Priest. And His perfect sacrifice. Assured that in Him, in Him alone, in His works and worth, we may be heard. In the name of the great Son, come forth from David’s loins.
For His sake, and Thy name in Him, give us spiritual rain in due season. Have respect unto us. Make us fruitful. Allow our work to yield the increase of knowledge of Thee in Jesus Christ. No longer make us stoop under the load of sin. We sow in tears, many; may we reap in joy, soon.
Make the preaching fruitful unto many good works in the lives of us and our children. Bless the Word unto the gathering of many into the fellowships of saints—in many lands. By that gospel, encourage the scattered saints; bring them into good fellowships of believers. Give peace in the churches. Unite the divided. Heal the wounds. Lift up those cast down. Restore the wayward. Forgive the disobedient. Cast down our idols. Cause us to return.
Rescue our children from the teeth of beasts; give them to their families again. Restore them to Thyself. Give them Thy peace. Prepare them for battle. Enable them to be discerning of good and evil. Incline them to love the good and pure. Cleanse their hearts and hands. Make them shining lights.
Raise up our sons to be mighty soldiers of war. Before all else, implant in them new, humble hearts. May our sons be godly, men after Thy own heart. Whose hands also are clean. Faithful men. Then, appoint some to be standard bearers before the gathered hosts of Jesus Christ; others to be trumpet-blowers who sound no uncertain sound to warn of enemies… and direct us toward the promised land. Teach them (and us all) skillfully to wield the sword of the Spirit, the powerful Word of God. It is able not only to make us wise unto salvation but to put the enemies to flight and dismay. With that sword, a few shall again put many to flight. “One little word shall fell them.”
Grant us daughters, Father, many of them. Bless them with covenant wisdom and godliness. With hearts like Sarah’s, the courage of Deborah, the charity and mercy of Tabitha. Give them Priscilla’s aptitude to teach, the bold cunning of Shiphrah and Puah, Ruth-like determination in the face of hopeless circumstances. The sacrificial spirit of Hannah (“I have lent him to the Lord”). The hospitality of Elijah’s hostess. The prayers, hope, and fullness of joy of Anna.
And under Thy preserving power, may all the churches’ mighty men stand strong.
We believe, Father. Help our unbelief. Give us assurance of answer to these prayers. Enable us to pray with confidence. Grant us not to look at ourselves, but at the perfect obedience, the works and worth of Jesus Christ, who loved us and gave Himself for us. As old-covenant Israel awaited the coming of the Son of David, we await His coming again. In this, the year of our Lord 2007, may the hope of His coming be increased in our hearts. Quicken in us a desire for redemption. By Thy grace, lift up our heads and hearts to wait for Him in the heavens. In these dark days, give us the Light. Life. Joy. Christ.
Blessed be Thy name, who hast given us rest according to all Thy promises! May not one of them fail! Lord our God, be with us, as Thou wast with our Fathers; leave us not, nor forsake us. Incline our hearts unto thee. Maintain the cause of Christ, and of His servants, the church.
That all the people of the earth may know that Thou, Jehovah, art God. There is none else. We love Thee.
In Jesus Christ, AMEN.