As believers in God, we understand through the writings of the Holy Scriptures, He, who created the heavens and the earth, is still in control of matters pertaining to the happenings on this earth. In our finite minds we cannot always know and understand His purposes and plans. Man, in his innate ability to make his own decisions, often will go contrary to the desires of the Lord. Thus we often reap as we have sown, whether good or evil, blessings or curses.
Nebuchadnezzer, king of Babylon, was used by God to punish his people Israel because of their idolatrous ways and sin. The king became very arrogant and God punished him in this manner. He was made to be like a wild animal and was fed the grass of the field until a lengthy time had passed. You will find this story in the book of Daniel 4:31-34; 5:20, 21. Note especially Daniel 5:21: “Then he was driven from the sons of men, his heart was made like the beasts, and his dwelling was with wild donkeys. They fed him with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, TILL HE KNEW THAT THE MOST HIGH GOD RULES IN THE KINGDOM OF MEN, AND APPOINTS OVER IT WHOMEVER HE CHOOSES” (Emphasis, R.E.)
There are other great and powerful lessons taught in the Bible about God and His treatment with the nations of men. Here are a couple of passages that need to be seriously considered: Proverbs 14:34: “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” Psalm 9:17: “The wicked shall be turned into hell (Sheol), And all the nations that forget God.”
The prophet Jonah was commanded by God to “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry out against it; for their wickedness has come up before Me.” (1:2). Noah eventually did go to Nineveh and preached a simple but profound sermon, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!” (3:4). The inhabitants from the king to the peasants all repented and God spared the city from destruction.
The passage in 2 Chronicles 7:14 must be understood in the light of the context. In the Old Testament, God chose the physical descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to be His chosen people. They were known as the children of Israel, the Israelites and the nation of Israel. Israel and Judah had forgotten God and were in the throngs of Idolatry and God used the Babylonians and the Assyrians to punish them. But God in His grace and mercy extended to them these promises: “If my people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” The promises found in this passage can be applied to any nation that will adhere to the directives contained in this passage, namely, humility, repentance, prayer and seeking after the Lord.
We don’t know what the future holds for our nation but we know who holds tomorrow. Read carefully the words found in the song, ‘This Is My Father’s World’: “This is my Father’s world, O let me ne’er forget That though the wrong seems often strong, God is the ruler yet. This is my Father’s world: Why should my heart be sad? The Lord is King: Let heaven ring! God reigns, Let earth be glad!”