“Nevertheless he regarded their affliction, when he heard their cry:”
Many words in the Scriptures carry a powerful truth to encourage people. The word “whosoever” is a powerful word because of God’s inclusiveness for salvation. Knowing that no matter how bad our background may be and how deep we have gone into sin, to know that God includes you for salvation is powerful.
However, maybe the most powerful word for the sinning saint is found in the verse above. God says, “Nevertheless…” God was not saying this to the lost world, but He was saying this to describe what He did for Israel every time they called on Him in their captivity. Let me share several thoughts with you about the verse above and how it can encourage you no matter what you may be facing today.
First, in spite of what you have done, God’s mercy is still available. One of the definitions of the word “nevertheless” is, “in spite of.” In spite of all that Israel did, God was still merciful. In spite of how many times they left Him, He was still merciful. In spite of how often they forsook His ways, He was still merciful. Christian, in spite of all you have done, God still has mercy for you. God is not endorsing you to leave Him, but He is encouraging you to remember that in spite of what you may have done, His mercy is still available for you. In others words, in spite of your past, God still wants you. My friend, you must stop letting your past hold you back from serving the LORD and realize that God’s mercy is available in spite of what you have done. Don’t let the past hold you back from God’s mercy and blessings.
Second, God never leaves you, even when you do wrong. Notice that the verse above says, “Nevertheless he regarded…” What a powerful phrase for the Christian to hold onto. In spite of what you are doing, He still regards you. In other words, God never disowns His children. Your friends may leave you, your church may disown you, but God always regards you. My friend, don’t think for a second that God doesn’t want you anymore because of what you have done. Remember that He regards you wherever you are.
Third, God cares for you in the midst of judgment. God says, “Nevertheless he regarded their affliction…” The word “regarded” means that God considers and looks on you in the time of judgment. God saw the affliction of Israel, and He yearned for them to come back. Just like the Saviour looked on Peter in his time of denial, God still cares for you in spite of you living in the consequences of sin. Christian, when you are living in the consequences of sin, don’t let the Devil fool you into believing that God no longer cares for you. Let me remind you that He still regards you in your affliction. Sin may have placed you where you are, but God’s eyes are still upon you because He cares for you.
Fourth, in spite of all you do, God is awaiting your cry. The verse above says, “…he regarded their affliction, when he heard their cry:” The only thing that is holding you back from God’s mercy is your willingness to cry to Him. This verse says, “…when he heard…” It doesn’t say He waited for awhile, but at the first sound of their voice He remembered His covenant with them and turned away His judgment. All God is waiting for to turn His judgment away is for you to cry to Him. Christian, stop punishing yourself and cry to the LORD, for He is waiting to hear your voice. In spite of your sin, the LORD is still merciful and is waiting for you to call on Him right now.