Joyful Pardon

Psalm 34

A nice Psalm for those that are struggling. The Lord and His angels protect those that fear and love God. It’s an invitation to know the Lord. To know and understand His blessings and His goodness. I really like verse 14b, “seek peace and pursue it.” We need to be active Christians. Peace and blessing come from our relationship with Jesus. We absolutely need to pursue it. It won’t just fall in our laps. And we need to share that bounty with the world too.

As joyful as it is to have a peaceful relationship with Jesus, Joy was not in this verse. So onto the Concordance. 2 Chronicles 30:26

There was great joy in Jerusalem, for since the days of Solomon son of David king of Israel there had been nothing like this in Jerusalem.

While reading the whole chapter to get context, I found ‘joyfully’ and ‘rejoiced’ also. And the Israelites had a reason. This was the first time that they truly celebrated the Passover in this large number since the days of King Solomon. Feasting always is fun and joyful. In this case, they were having such fun, that they increased the festival for an extra week.

But what really got me in this reading was verses 17-20. The Israelites were out of practice and a lot of them did not properly consecrate themselves according to law, “yet they ate the Passover, contrary to what was written.” In the old testament time, there were sever punishments for violating the laws.

However, King “Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, “May the Lord, who is good, pardon everyone who sets their heart on seeking God—the Lord, the God of their ancestors—even if they are not clean according to the rules of the sanctuary.” And the Lord heard Hezekiah and healed the people.”

I really liked this. In the New Testament, Jesus speaks against the Pharisees and their concern more for the legalistic rules than the intent behind the rules. And here King Hezekiah understood the importance of the rule but asks God for pardon.  King Hezekiah got it. God knew his heart and the heart of the Israelites. And he forgave them. All the more reason to be joyful and celebrate for an extra week.

Peace and Blessings.