by Phillip Vanwinkle
AUGUST 7, 2015

Pray Not For This People?

I want to start by saying that I am not too much of an emotional guy. I try not to act or re-act too harshly when receiving news of any kind. But it has been a trying few months for me as a Christian, watching the people that I love, in the Nation that I have always cherished, laugh in the face of God whom I worship and adore.

ISIS kills innocent people in the name of Allah, and I watch as people who have no idea what the Quran teaches, try to explain to me that these Jihadists are going against what Allah teaches, but (since I know how to read) I know better.

Yes, I am in some ways stunned as I watch that evil and/or misguided religion carry out the words of the Quran on video, by decapitating and burning those who disagree with their lifestyle choices.

Unarmed American servicemen die at the hands of an Islamic terrorist, and again I watch as the moronic media tries to explain away the wicked nature of the Quran. Fine! Go to it, explain it all away there Cap’n.  The Quran still teaches what the Quran teaches.

Then again, 5 American judges say it is okay for men to marry men, fine! God does not care what American lawmakers say – He will punish them one day if they do not repent, and no amount of rainbow flags are going to change His mind.

Sin is constantly and blatantly being thrown around, and many times I am at a loss at what to do. So, I pray - I pray and I pray.  But honestly, it seems almost hopeless. What am I to do?  I am reminded of the prophet Jeremiah, when God instructed him to stop praying for his own nation.

16 As for you, do not pray for this people, or lift up a cry or prayer for them, and do not intercede with me, for I will not hear you. 17 Do you not see what they are doing in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 The children gather wood, the fathers kindle fire, and the women knead dough, to make cakes for the queen of heaven. And they pour out drink offerings to other gods, to provoke me to anger. 19 Is it I whom they provoke? declares the Lord. Is it not themselves, to their own shame? 20 Therefore thus says the Lord God: Behold, my anger and my wrath will be poured out on this place, upon man and beast, upon the trees of the field and the fruit of the ground; it will burn and not be quenched.” (Jeremiah 7:16-20ESV)

Am I there yet? Am I too cynical? Do I take this principle too far? Honestly, I don’t know.  But this week it has hit me full force, right between the eyes. For years we in the United States have killed innocent children in the name of “choice.” We have decided that in order for me to be happy, I must take the life of another. In reality, we are the “ISIS” to innocent little babies. “How’s that?” you ask. See, if those babies don’t agree with our lifestyle, we simply chop their heads off and do away with them.

We have chosen to call babies -‘fetuses’ so that we do not have to call them children.

But, whatever we call them, we know that they are tiny human beings. And we are killing them at horribly fast rates and in torturous, evil ways.

When Nazi Germany decided that Jews were ‘less’ than people, they exterminated human beings by the millions. And from those shriveled up little bodies, all that Jewish blood still cries out from those graves today. Remnants of gas chambers, relics in cold hallways of museums, pictures of bodies piled up are all reminders of the atrocities of one of the cruelest governments the world has ever known. 

This past month I have seen what I have done, where my tax dollars have gone, and it makes me sick to my stomach. This last month, the terrible videos of Planned Parenthood’s actions of selling baby parts for profit turned my stomach, brought a mist to my eyes, and broke my heart as I watched those heartless workers jovially kid around as they picked up the limbs of little babies they had previously chopped into bits.

I don’t care to get into a fight about whether selling parts is wrong, or making a profit is wrong… all that stuff is beside the point. The point is we are killing innocent children at a rate that Adolf Hitler would be jealous of.

As I sat here at my computer screen, I could not believe my eyes. I had to take a long pause. I had to get up and go to the bathroom just to regroup. I got a drink of water, and waited for the images to leave my mind. But they didn’t, they still will not. “Why?” I asked myself. “What have I been doing all this time?” “How did I not ‘get’ it?”

I guess, I figured as long as their sin was not visible, it didn’t affect me. It seemed so distant. All of these years, I had known what they were doing… I simply had been rocked into a gentle state of numbness, and in some ways ignorance. Did I know that they were chopping babies up? Yes. Did I logically understand what happened in a science lab some place, in some distant building somewhere far away? Yes.

But when I saw those little arms and legs, and eyeballs, being tossed around in a Betty Crocker cake dish- my heart fell out of my chest. When I saw them tossing a leg aside like I toss away my chicken bones when I finish my KFC, I was jolted awake from my state of numbness. And for the first time, the horrors that those babies face every day, I was able to see with my own eyes. And though I could not feel their pain, I felt something… I felt the cold chill, of a heartless Nation that may be too far gone. And again, my heart sank.

I stopped what I was doing and I prayed. I didn’t know what to say… I prayed that somehow God would raise someone up, someone that we NEED. I begged God to give us someone that we need, and not someone that we deserve.

But as I prayed, the words God spoke to Jeremiah ran through my mind.

…do not pray for this people, or lift up a cry or prayer for them, and do not intercede with me, for I will not hear you. 17 Do you not see what they are doing…”

After contemplating for a while, I decided I needed to move on. I needed to turn to ‘brighter’ things, so that I could move on with my day.

I returned later to my computer to see a yahoo news report that T.V Host Jimmy Kimmel had cried because of the death of a lion called Cecil. A full grown man, on National Television cried because a soulless lion was killed by a hunter.  Hey, newsflash Kimmel, hunters kill animals. People have killed animals for thousands of years, they are animals.

The anger that I had been suppressing began coming out as I talked in muted tones and hushed murmurs at my screen – “America has lost her sense of humanity. We have gone too far.”

As Isaiah warned Judah:

  20 Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! (Isaiah 5:20 ESV)

We have turned it upside down. We have lost it! Every bit of common sense that we used to have has long since left us. We cry at the death of a vicious predator, and defend the actions of brutal killers in abortion clinics. Little Hitler-esque doctors with smiles on their faces, sending tiny babies to their death chambers. I can’t help but wonder if God has turned his back on us. I wonder how long we can laugh in His face, sin and smile about it and still expect Him to bless us.

Perhaps it is past time for us to take heed to the principle that God told Isaiah as he was called before the throne of God. God said to Isaiah:

Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. 10 Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed. (Isaiah 6:9-10)

God told Isaiah, go out and teach the truth. Though they will not listen… you teach it anyway so that they will have no excuse at the judgment.

Then Isaiah asked God what I have been asking God all month. “How long?”

11 Then said I, Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate, (Isaiah 6:11)

I understand the differences; I know that America is not Israel. I know that the exact rules don’t always apply. I know the differences in the Old Law and the New. However, when I see America today and compare it to the wicked lands in the Bible, I am forced to ask the question Isaiah asked. “Lord, How long?”

These words come to life before my eyes as I watch the sin and corruption take root and be established in the Nation that I have loved all my life:

11 Therefore I am full of the fury of the Lord; I am weary with holding in: I will pour it out upon the children abroad, and upon the assembly of young men together: for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged with him that is full of days. 12 And their houses shall be turned unto others, with their fields and wives together: for I will stretch out my hand upon the inhabitants of the land, saith the Lord. 13 For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 14 They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 15 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith the Lord. 16 Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein. 17 Also I set watchmen over you, saying, Hearken to the sound of the trumpet. But they said, We will not hearken. 18 Therefore hear, ye nations, and know, O congregation, what is among them. 19 Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto my words, nor to my law, but rejected it. (Jeremiah 6:11-18)

So I ask as Isaiah did, “How long Oh Lord? How long do I speak, until the people will get it?”  I pray that the land will not have to be left desolate; I pray that for the sake of the remnant, God will spare us. Somehow… some way.  

But along with that, I pray that regardless of what happens to America, that I will stay faithful to Him. That as me and my house serve the Lord that He will be with us when /if the day of reckoning comes upon us. I will continue to pray for this once great country. I will pray that God will raise up leaders in every branch of our government, from the bottom to the top – who will base their decisions on the Biblical principles that this country was founded upon.

And that in His mercy, He will spare those of us, who truly love and wish to serve Him according to His word.

May we all seek to change ourselves first, and in changing ourselves, change the hearts and minds of those who desperately need the Lord.


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