God has brought judgement on his people. Now, because they have shown a repentant heart and a believing life, he will restore them.

“In those days, yes, at that very time when I put life back together again for Judah and Jerusalem, I’ll assemble all the godless nations. I’ll lead them down into Judgment Valley and put them all on trial, and judge them one and all  because of their treatment of my own people Israel. They scattered my people all over the pagan world and grabbed my land for themselves. They threw dice for my people and used them for barter. They would trade a boy for a whore, sell a girl for a bottle of wine when they wanted a drink. Joel 3:1-3 (The Message)

The relationship between the people of God and the land, in the Old Testament, is essential to the story. The land is blessed when the people are in a right relationship with God. Judgement comes on the people and they are separated from the land. The God of the Bible is, however,  jealous for his people and wants them restored to a right relationship. When they repent from their godlessness he is quick to act on their behalf. Although he allows the nations surrounding his people to dominate them in order to bring them back into dependance on him, when they do repent God is quick to turn his anger on their enemies.

What we see here is that God is jealous over those who turn to him. He wants the best for us, and so, he does not let our enemies have the upper hand if we are faithful. When we are oppressed by feelings of inadequacy, self hatred, fear, loathing, or self-doubt, we can find, in a consistency of repentance and faith, healing and deliverance from our enemies. By trusting in Jesus we are led into the truth about ourselves, that we are loved with and evelasting love by a jealous God and he will never let us go or let us down.

In the struggle against my enemies, Lord, let me depend on you. Let my heart be repentant and my life believing so that I can be healed, delivered, and set free. Amen.

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