” Then the Lord said to Moses, “Rise up early in the morning and present yourself to Pharaoh, as he goes out to the water, and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Let my people go, that they may serve me. Or else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you and your servants and your people, and into your houses. And the houses of the Egyptians shall be filled with swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they stand. But on that day I will set apart the land of Goshen, where my people dwell, so that no swarms of flies shall be there, that you may know that I am the Lord in the midst of the earth. Thus I will put a division between my people and your people. Tomorrow this sign shall happen.” ’ ” And the Lord did so. There came great swarms of flies into the house of Pharaoh and into his servants’ houses. Throughout all the land of Egypt the land was ruined by the swarms of flies.” (Exodus 8:20-24, ESV)
Up until this point in the Exodus narrative, it appears the Israelites experienced the difficulties of the plagues as well as the Egyptians did. They too had suffered the loss of the Nile’s water when it was turned to blood; the frogs which invaded even their ovens and beds; the pesky gnats that covered “man and beast” like dust. It wasn’t any more pleasant for God’s people than for their Captors.
God’s judgments upon mankind, or a particular nation, affect the Christians resident there as well as those who are being judged. We need to keep this in mind, especially when we pray concerning God’s dealings with our own nation. Are WE willing to suffer some of what it will take to break the pride and self-sufficiency of America? Or have we developed a theology of “exemption”? “Lord, deal with THEM, as long as we don’t have to experience any discomfort or pain.” But this is not how God works. Christians in America are both Christians AND Americans. We have our share in what God is doing on both fronts.
Does there ever come a separation? Evidently, at least it appears so in this text. There does come a separation – wherein the distinction is made. But in the meantime Beloved, do not be surprised that you suffer some of the ill effects of God’s dealings with the lost. If we want revival in the United States, we must prepare ourselves to suffer what it takes to break a nation like ours, along with the rest of the populace. God will give us special grace – but some things – we will have to endure in common. Are we willing to do that, in order that God might move mightily in revival?
Its a good question to ask ourselves.