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Reflections on the Inauguration

2017-Blog-Inauguration2

Notwithstanding your political affiliation, you may have watched the Presidential Inauguration today from a purely historical perspective. If you did, you heard a reading from Matthew 5, a place we have recently been together as a church:

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

After hearing such familiar words read in this incredibly social context, I was reminded that although the truths of the Gospel are primarily personal, with personal implications, they also have social implications, as God changes our country through people who are changed by the truths of the Gospel.

After also hearing an inaugural benediction to offer “supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions (1 Timothy 2:1-2),” I was also reminded of my shortcomings to faithfully pray that these truths would be known by our leaders, our neighbors, and every American, near and far.

In response to these words from the Word of God, could I invite you to join me over the next couple of days, or perhaps into this next presidential term, in praying Matthew 5:3-10 for our President, and all Americans:

• Pray that our President would recognize his poverty before God – that every American would, and that as a result, our country would better care for its poor.

• Pray that our President would mourn over his sin before God – that every American would, and that as a result, our country would better care for those who mourn.

• Pray that our President would approach God in meekness – that every American would, and that as a result, our country would better care for the meek.

• Pray that our President would hunger and thirst for righteousness – that every American would, and that as a result, our country would better seek what is right and live rightly before God and each other.

• Pray that our President would become increasingly merciful – that every American would, and that as a result, our country would show more mercy to one another.

• Pray that our President would receive a new and pure heart before God – that every American would, and that as a result, our country would seek purity and live in a more pure way before God and each other.

• Pray that our President would be a peacemaker – that every American would, and that as a result, our country would be at peace, with God and each other, and be a peacemaking nation.

The closing of the inaugural benediction from 1 Timothy 2 reminds us of why we pray for these people, in these way as Christians: “This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Timothy 2:3-4).” Would you join me in praying in these ways, and to this end, for every American.

Prayerfully,

Pastor Matt