Scripture: Ezekiel 22-24, Revelation 9
Ezekiel 22:30 I looked for someone who could build a wall, who could stand in the places where the walls have crumbled and defend the land when my anger is about to destroy it, but I could find no one.
God announces His judgement on Israel through Ezekiel, and He lists the sins of Jerusalem. At the end of the list comes this heart-wrenching verse. God looked for someone to stand in the gap, someone who would defend the land—and He could find no one. Not one person who would pray, who would intercede with God on behalf of the nation.
This reminds me of God saying He would spare Sodom if He could find a few righteous people. Earlier, Ezekiel said that God doesn’t enjoy punishing people; He wants people to live, to thrive. He created us for life, not death, and He wants the very best for us—life to the full! All it takes is one person—just one person who will stand before God. And yet, God couldn’t find a single person in Jerusalem who would pray, who would seek Him. Not one.
The idea that one person could change God’s mind, one person could avert God’s judgment, is also found in the story of Moses. In Exodus 32, Aaron shapes a golden calf and the people revert to idolatry. God tells Moses that He will destroy the nation and create a new nation from Moses’ descendants and fulfill His promise through them. But Moses quickly intercedes and begs God not to destroy the idolatrous nation.
Exodus 32:14 So the Lord changed his mind and did not bring on his people the disaster he had threatened.
One man stood between the nation and God’s certain judgment—and averted the judgment. The psalmist wrote of this:
Psalms 106:23 When God said that he would destroy his people, his chosen servant, Moses, stood up against God and kept his anger from destroying them.
Moses “stood up against God.” That sounds wrong—but it was exactly what God was looking for. “Is there a man or woman who will pray, who will intercede, who will stand in the gap?” God is looking for one person who stand in the gap and pray.
May I be that person. May our churches be filled with those people!
Prayer: Lord, I pray for our city, our state, our nation. Let your judgment purify and refine us, but not destroy us. Let your judgment make us better, but don’t destroy us. Have mercy on us Lord. And send a revival—a fresh move of the Holy Spirit that will renew our churches, save millions of people, and heal our land.