Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
Read: Daniel 9:1-19
1 In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans;
2 In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem.
3 And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes:
4 And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments;
5 We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments:
6 Neither have we hearkened unto thy servants the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land.
7 O Lord, righteousness belongeth unto thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at this day; to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, that are near, and that are far off, through all the countries whither thou hast driven them, because of their trespass that they have trespassed against thee.
8 O Lord, to us belongeth confusion of face, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee.
9 To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him;
10 Neither have we obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in his laws, which he set before us by his servants the prophets.
11 Yea, all Israel have transgressed thy law, even by departing, that they might not obey thy voice; therefore the curse is poured upon us, and the oath that is written in the law of Moses the servant of God, because we have sinned against him.
12 And he hath confirmed his words, which he spake against us, and against our judges that judged us, by bringing upon us a great evil: for under the whole heaven hath not been done as hath been done upon Jerusalem.
13 As it is written in the law of Moses, all this evil is come upon us: yet made we not our prayer before the LORD our God, that we might turn from our iniquities, and understand thy truth.
14 Therefore hath the LORD watched upon the evil, and brought it upon us: for the LORD our God is righteous in all his works which he doeth: for we obeyed not his voice.
15 And now, O Lord our God, that hast brought thy people forth out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and hast gotten thee renown, as at this day; we have sinned, we have done wickedly.
16 O Lord, according to all thy righteousness, I beseech thee, let thine anger and thy fury be turned away from thy city Jerusalem, thy holy mountain: because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and thy people are become a reproach to all that are about us.
17 Now therefore, O our God, hear the prayer of thy servant, and his supplications, and cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctuary that is desolate, for the Lord’s sake.
18 O my God, incline thine ear, and hear; open thine eyes, and behold our desolations, and the city which is called by thy name: for we do not present our supplications before thee for our righteousnesses, but for thy great mercies.
19 O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, hearken and do; defer not, for thine own sake, O my God: for thy city and thy people are called by thy name.
Our Bible reading shows Daniel, a great man of prayer, interceding for his nation, Israel. In his prayer, he asked God to remember His promise to restore the nation of Israel. He was determined to seek the face of God for mercy, through prayers and supplications with fasting. He mourned for the despicable condition of the Jews who were scattered all over the world and for the ruins of Jerusalem. There are great lessons of life we can profit from when we ponder on this example of Daniel.
One of these lessons is from this statement: “I Daniel understood by books” (Daniel 9:2). It was Daniel’s discovery and understanding of what the Lord had said through Prophet Jeremiah in Jeremiah 29:10, concerning the time of His visitation to restore Israel as a nation that motivated him to intercede for his people. Recognise the fact that in this period, there was no Bible collating all the writings of the prophets in one volume. The writings of the prophets were on different scrolls spread across various locations. Therefore, it must have been a lot of hard work for Daniel to search for the relevant scrolls of the prophets, and then read through them to know what God had said about the situation he was bothered about. Reading, studying and meditating on God’s word is hard work, but the extent to which you know the Bible is the extent to which you will know the mind of God concerning you. When you know the mind of God concerning a situation, it will build your confidence as you approach your Heavenly Father in prayer.
“Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?”
In answer to our Lord’s question, a father indeed would not do that. How much more our Heavenly Father who is more benevolent than our earthly fathers (Matthew 7:1)? I therefore encourage you to study to know the mind of God, so as to pray aright at all times. This alone can guarantee express answers to your needs. It will not be good for you to engage in an exercise in futility. Pray according to God’s mind in His holy word and you will be happy you did. Do not keep your mouth shut and suffer in silence.
Father, help the leaders of my country to be alive to their responsibilities in Jesus’ Name.
May God Bless Nigeria, America And Israel And Take Care Of Us; May God Make His Face Shine Upon Us, And Be Gracious To Us; May The Lord Lift Up His Countenance Upon Us, And Give Us Peace, In Jesus Christ Name, We Pray! Amen!
May The Grace The Lord Jesus Christ, And The Love Of God, And The Fellowship Of The Holy Spirit Be With You All. Amen!