Luk 19:41 And when he (Jesus) drew near and saw the city (Jerusalem), he wept over it,
Luk 19:42 saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.
Luk 19:43 For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side
Luk 19:44 and tear you down to the ground, you and your children within you. And they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not know the time of your visitation.”
English Standard Version
Luk 19:41 And when he (Jesus) was come near (Jerusalem), he beheld the city, and wept over it,
Luk 19:42 Saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes.
Luk 19:43 For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side,
Luk 19:44 And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.
King James Version
That was part of the passage Pastor James Faris preached yesterday at 2nd Reformed Presbyterian Church. I have always been taken by the phrase “day of visitation” because it seems that most of us experience certain times in life when God softens our hearts to hear His counsel. We either heed it or we harden our hearts against it. This is true for the believer and the non-believer.
For the believer this time of visitation is usually for encouragement and strength or for something we need to repent of. For the unbeliever it is a call to be reconciled to God. It is a message to believe in the person and work of Christ so that they might have everlasting life. A day of visitation can also be a time of recompense for the evil a person or even Nations have to account for.
I may be incorrect but it seems that there are certain times when He visits the soul. You shouldn’t say tomorrow, tomorrow I will take care of the thing God is visiting me about. Our hearts are too fickle, easily hardened, and God doesn’t have a limitless patience. He is longsuffering but he does have a time frame that shouldn’t be neglected. I think I can back this up with the following passage along with a warning from the book of Hebrews.
Revelation chapter 2
Rev 2:20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.
Rev 2:21 And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not.
Rev 2:22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.
Rev 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.
If you ever have a chance, note all of the instances where the word visitation is used in the Scriptures. It is a fascinating nugget of God’s word. It seems it signifies days of judgment or times when men may be called to account for their lives either in this world or the world to come. When you do it keep in mind two passages if you are a believer. Our actions as children of God might have some effect upon others when they have a ‘day of visitation’.
Matthew chapter 5
Mat 5:13 “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.
Mat 5:14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.
Mat 5:15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.
Mat 5:16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
1 Peter chapter 2
1Pe 2:11 Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.
1Pe 2:12 Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.
Just a few examples from the Old Testament..
Isa 10:3 And what will ye do in the day of visitation, and in the desolation which shall come from far? to whom will ye flee for help? and where will ye leave your glory?
Jer 8:12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among them that fall: in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith the LORD.
And a warning to not harden our hearts in the the times of temptation and days of visitation…
Heb 3:4 For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God.
Heb 3:5 And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;
Heb 3:6 But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.
Heb 3:7 Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice,
Heb 3:8 Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness:
Heb 3:9 When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years.
Heb 3:10 Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways.
Heb 3:11 So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.)
Heb 3:12 Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
Heb 3:13 But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
Heb 4:1 Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.
Heb 4:2 For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.
Heb 4:3 For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.
Heb 4:4 For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works.
Heb 4:5 And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.
Heb 4:6 Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief:
Heb 4:7 Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.