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O Lord, forgive! - Wednesday, May 16th, 2007

“O Lord, in accordance with all Your righteous acts, let now Your anger and Your wrath turn away from Your city Jerusalem, Your holy mountain; for because of our sins and the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and Your people have become a reproach to all those around us. So now, our God, listen to the prayer of Your servant and to his supplications, and for Your sake, O Lord, let Your face shine on Your desolate sanctuary. O my God, incline Your ear and hear! Open Your eyes and see our desolations and the city which is called by Your name; for we are not presenting our supplications before You on account of any merits of our own, but on account of Your great compassion. O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and take action! For Your own sake, O my God, do not delay, because Your city and Your people are called by Your name.”
Daniel 9:16-19

Here is the situation at hand. The city of Dallas is currently in the middle of an election race for the office of mayor. This past Saturday voters turned out to cast their ballots. With the results counted, it was determined the votes were too close to call (and very minimal). Therefore, there will be a “runoff” on June 16th between two candidates. One candidate is a Christian. I couldn’t tell you anything about his relationship with Jesus Christ, except that he attends a local congregation in Dallas and he is married.

As far as the other candidate goes, I just found out some disturbing details I was not made aware of until recently. The other opponent is an openly gay man. How do we know? Well, one source that reveals this man’s sexual preference is through a gay and lesbian funding program. This organization is promoting him and attempting to raise financial sources for his campaign. The CEO of the organization says, “This is an historic election that could change American politics. If ( - ) wins the runoff and is elected mayor, the message to the political establishment will be crystal clear: ‘American voters embrace fairness. You should too.’”

Why should we as the body of Christ embrace fairness? In this situation WE SHOULDN’T. This type of fairness leads to the compromise of our beliefs in Jesus Christ. And too many times we compromise who we are in Christ so we don’t offend others. Allow me to say, “I am tired of people attempting to be fair. Let’s stop candy-coating the sins in our society.” A sin is a sin. Let’s not label them struggles to sound better. A sin is a sin. And I believe it is FAIR to say, “The body of Christ is partially to blame. How could our city get to this point of having a lesbian sheriff, and a mayoral candidate who is openly gay, UNLESS WE, as Christians, have compromised the Scriptures? Unless we have become complacent in our own sins? Unless we are not making the truth known and living it out in our own lives? Maybe some of us have given into stealing. Maybe others have given into pride. Maybe some have given into lust. Maybe some have succumbed to alcoholism. Either way, these sins must not become a lifestyle as we pursue Christ. Yeah, we will all fall and stumble, but we must not continue in these sins. Non-Christians don’t have any standards to live by nor should we expect them to. But if a person claims to know Jesus, allow me to suggest what the Apostle Paul would say in today’s language in, “Listen up. Each of us must not adhere to these sins as a lifestyle...or else we will be thrown into the pit of hell.” 1 Corinthians 6:8-10 says, “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.”

Please hear me say this, I believe our city would not have gotten to this point of blatant sinfulness had the body of Christ of Dallas been proactive in their relationship with Jesus Christ. And allow me to say, “I am guilty as charged.” If each of us were willing to invest into our neighbors and community with all of our heart, soul, and mind, maybe we would see some change. Maybe. Imagine if the 2,900 local congregations actually came together to effect this city. Imagine if we were unified. Therefore, I hope and pray that Church of Dallas is willing to collectively come before God, as Daniel did, and ask for forgiveness on behalf on His people. Let us ask for God to spare our city. Abortion started in Dallas. President John F. Kennedy was shot in Dallas. Our crime rate is the highest in the nation (per capita). I quote Daniel in this desperate time for help from God, when he said, “O my God, incline Your ear and hear! Open Your eyes and see our desolations and the city which is called by Your name; for we are not presenting our supplications before You on account of any merits of our own, but on account of Your great compassion. O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and take action! For Your own sake, O my God, do not delay, because Your city and Your people are called by Your name.”

O Lord, no longer must the body of Christ hide from the compromises of life. Let us stand firm on the foundation of Jesus Christ, and be proactive in our neighborhoods. We must be the salt and the light of this city. As the speaker said last night, “If we want to see revival come, we must be willing to get messy.” This means we need to invest into others’ lives and exemplify the lifestyle of Jesus Christ to others. Let’s not compromise any longer to the ways of the world.
-klm

" We cannot organize revival, but we can set our sails to catch the wind from Heaven when God chooses to blow upon His people once again."

- G. Campbell Morgan