The Family Tree
2 Chronicles 7:14
Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.
I am not an Israelite. But I do consider myself one of God’s People. He welcomed me into his Family because I believe in his Son according to Romans 11. So I enjoy the benefits of passages from Scripture like this one.
But some of these branches from Abraham’s tree—some of the people of Israel—have been broken off. And you Gentiles, who were branches from a wild olive tree, have been grafted in. So now you also receive the blessing God has promised Abraham and his children, sharing in the rich nourishment from the root of God’s special olive tree. But you must not brag about being grafted in to replace the branches that were broken off. You are just a branch, not the root. “Well,” you may say, “those branches were broken off to make room for me.” Yes, but remember—those branches were broken off because they didn’t believe in Christ, and you are there because you do believe. So don’t think highly of yourself, but fear what could happen. For if God did not spare the original branches, he won’t spare you either.
Notice how God is both kind and severe. He is severe toward those who disobeyed, but kind to you if you continue to trust in his kindness. But if you stop trusting, you also will be cut off. And if the people of Israel turn from their unbelief, they will be grafted in again, for God has the power to graft them back into the tree.
I like how this Romans passage points out how God is both kind and severe. What a great way to describe him. People forget about the severe part because God doesn’t always immediately administer punishment. So as people “get away” with sinning, they keep doing it. But the reason God doesn’t is because he is also kind. The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.
(2 Peter 3:9)
He doesn’t want anyone to be destroyed. And he forgives and restores anyone who turns from their wicked ways and continues to trust in his kindness. ANYONE, not matter who we are or what we’ve done because God can graft anyone back into the tree.
So, I won’t stop praying for my family and friends who reject him, for those who’ve turned away from him, and for those who think they don’t need him. For, if they will humble themselves and pray and seek God’s face and turn from their wicked ways, they will also be part of the Family!
I pray for our unsaved family and friends. They don’t even know they need you, or they’ve made up a version of who you are that is not based in reality. Help them to know that you are severe as well as kind. Thank you that these truths about you serve to teach us to love and trust you. I am so thankful that you are slow to get angry and full of love. And I pray for anyone who mistakenly believes something else about you. I love you and thank you and pray in Jesus’ name, amen.