According to Andrew White, author of Father Forgive , page 66, Ignatius of Antioch wrote that anyone who eats the Passover with the Jews was in league with those responsible for killing Jesus. In letters to several Christian communities, Ignatius refers to Jews in a very derogatory way, at one point declaring it is “monstrous to talk of Jesus Christ and to practice Judaism” (To the Magnesians 10:3).
Since we are focusing these 40 days on attitudes, we choose to forgive our forefathers for their failings and search our lives to see where we have used our tongues (or pens) to “set on fire the course of hell.” Like Ezra, Nehemiah, and Daniel, we humbly approach God to beseech Him to forgive us and change us as a people.
Father, today, on Day 2, we ask you to forgive us and our forefathers for lack of understanding Your word, for lack of understanding the height and width and depth of Your love and Your kingdom, and for failing to ask You for the grace to extend it to our neighbors.
Forgive us, Abba, for counting Your feasts a “strange thing.”
In addition, we ask You to heal the wounds of the Jewish people that we have caused and to help us to unite as brothers. Abba, we ask You to forgive those whose tongues were weapons against the Jews and those who believed their hurtful words. Forgive us where we have made proclamations that did not align with Scripture and where our words have been arrows and darts that caused great harm. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer. (Psalm 19:14)
[Exo 12:47-50 ESV] 47 All the congregation of Israel shall keep it. 48 If a stranger shall sojourn with you and would keep the Passover to the LORD, let all his males be circumcised. Then he may come near and keep it; he shall be as a native of the land. But no uncircumcised person shall eat of it. 49 There shall be one law for the native and for the stranger who sojourns among you.” 50 All the people of Israel did just as the LORD commanded Moses and Aaron.
[1Co 5:7-8 ESV] 7 Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8 Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
[Eph 2:11-13 ESV] 11 Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands– 12 remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
[Jhn 20:22-23 ESV] 22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.”
[Hos 8:11-12 ESV] 11 Because Ephraim has multiplied altars for sinning, they have become to him altars for sinning. 12 Were I to write for him my laws by the ten thousands, they would be regarded as a strange thing.
[Jas 3:5-6 ESV] 5 So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things. How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell.
[Ezr 9:7 ESV] 7 From the days of our fathers to this day we have been in great guilt. And for our iniquities we, our kings, and our priests have been given into the hand of the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity, to plundering, and to utter shame, as it is today.
[Neh 9:16-17 ESV] 16 “But they and our fathers acted presumptuously and stiffened their neck and did not obey your commandments. 17 They refused to obey and were not mindful of the wonders that you performed among them, but they stiffened their neck and appointed a leader to return to their slavery in Egypt. But you are a God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and did not forsake them.
[Dan 9:8 ESV] 8 To us, O LORD, belongs open shame, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against you.