Ezekiel 22:17-23:49, 24:1-4
2 Kings 24:20-25:2
Jeremiah 52:3-5, 39:1
Ezekiel 22:30-31, “I looked for someone who might rebuild the wall of righteousness that guards the land. I searched for someone to stand in the gap in the wall so I wouldn’t have to destroy the land, but I found no one. So now I will pour out My fury on them, consuming them with the fire of My anger. I will heap on their heads the full penalty for all their sins. I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken!”
Yikes! Today’s passage is intense, and it doesn’t speak well for what was going on with the Israelites of the day. God “searched” for at least one righteous person to “stand in the gap.” What does this mean? Let’s take a look at it both literally and figuratively to get a full picture of what was happening then and how we can apply it to our lives today — essentially, how we can fill the gap.
In ancient times, cities were vulnerable to attack if there were breaches within their fortified walls. In the event these gaps existed, people willing to fight off invaders stood and guarded the weakened areas, often risking their own lives to do so. In this instance, Jerusalem had been breached by sin. God couldn’t even find one person capable of standing in the gap to lift up an intercessory prayer — to cry out for their people in the face of coming judgment. Ezekiel, God’s prophet, had been warning His people, and not even one person heeded God’s message enough to pray, to stand in the gap where sin had so badly breached the walls of their hearts.
What does this mean for us today? How can we be “gap fillers?” First, we have to look beyond ourselves to the needs of others. God wants us to be sensitive to the promptings He places on our hearts. If someone pops into our minds and we feel a tug in our hearts to pray for them, we should — immediately. Second, it ushers in joy when we pray for a person in need, and the prayer is answered. And, third, it draws us closer to God. The more we respond to such promptings, the more He will work through us to fill such gaps.
So, open your heart today and be receptive to whatever God places on your heart. Fill the gap of righteousness and be blessed!
Heavenly Father, I want to stand in the gap for others. Nudge my heart like never before when people are in need of prayer. I seek to lead a righteous life to fulfill Your amazing plans and purposes. Amen.