29:1-36 – God is calling us to be holy – ‘Now sanctify yourselves, and sanctify the House of the Lord, the God of your fathers, and carry out the filth from the holy place’ (5). Before there can be true rejoicing in the Lord – ‘they sang praises with gladness’ – , there must be real dedication to the Lord – ‘We have cleansed all the House of the Lord’ (30,18). Before there can be rejoicing, there must be restoration (35-36). We may pray, ‘Restore, O Lord, the honour of Your Name!’. We must also pray, ‘Cleanse me from my sin, Lord’. The prayer for revival begins with the dedication of our own lives to the Lord – ‘O Holy Ghost, revival comes from Thee; send a revival – start the work in me’ (Mission Praise, 579, 82, 587). Revival can happen ‘suddenly’ (36). It will not happen without a true return to the Lord.
30:1-31:10 – We are called to ‘return to the Lord’. With this call comes God’s promise: ‘the Lord your God is gracious and merciful, and will not turn His face from you, if you return to Him’ (30:9). Where does the desire to return to the Lord come from? – It comes from the Lord Himself: ‘the hand of the Lord was on the people to give them one heart to do what the king and the princes commanded by the Word of the Lord’ (12). Returning to the Lord, we hear His Word of forgiveness: ‘The good Lord pardon every one who sets his heart to seek God’. We rejoice in the Gospel – ‘The vilest offender who truly believes, that moment from Jesus a pardon receives’. ‘ The Lord has blessed His people’. We rejoice in Him – ‘Praise the Lord!… Let the people rejoice’ and ‘let the earth hear His voice’ (18-19; 30:10; Mission Praise, 708).