30 September 2019

Exodus 32:1–14, Numbers 14:11–24, Ezekiel 22:30-31, Matthew 18:18–20

Standing in the gap has long been a phrase used for intercessory prayer, and it is fitting. Sometimes, however, standing in the gap doesn’t always mean what we think it means.

Twice Moses stands “in the gap” apparently between and the Israelites. The Israelites have ed their agreements with , even so quickly after their miracle-filled escape from Egypt. What possessed Moses to stand between and the Israelites? Was it truly concern for ’s glory? Scripture only really provides that interpretation. In f, it happens twice. Moses stands between and the Israelites.

It’s Moses! Of course, Moses can do that! There is the time Abraham sort-of steps in between and the city of Sodom, but it wasn’t the same.

Yet, in Ezekiel, we see that perhaps it isn’t an Abraham or Moses task to stand in the gap. It’s anyone’s task. Re-read those 2 verses in Ezekiel. It seems as if is disappointed that no one is standing between and consequences. was looking for a person to stand up and def the ners, lost, and un! Sound familiar? There is an inference that there was such a lack of believers and followers that they couldn’t, wouldn’t, or felt they shouldn’t stand in the gap.

Where does that leave us? Let’s look at s. They have long been used by the Roman Catholic church for certain prices of theirs. Abuses of it helped to trigger the Reformation. However, in so doing, these s are avoided by Protestant circles. Regardless of our personal feelings, these s of remind us that we are ed to stand in the gap for .

While we are especially to stand in the gap for those in the exted of believers, we are also ed to do the same for those currently outside of the of believers.

1) What do you think of the “whatever” that is in s?

2) For whom in the of believers are you standing in the gap? For whom that are outside of the are you standing in the gap?

3) Looking at (Abraham,) Moses, Ezekiel, and , what does it mean to be standing in the gap?

Pastor Ian

By Pastor Ian

Ian is an ordained Elder in The Church of the Nazarene, and is currently serving as the Online Campus Pastor at Generations Community Church in Marysville, WA, USA.