We have come to the end of our journey through the OT. We have seen creation, the fall, the calling of a nation, the settling in the land, rulers like Saul, David, Solomon, Rehoboam, Jeroboam, the split of the nation of Israel, exile of both Israel and Judah, the return of a remnant from Babylon. Stories about Daniel, Esther, Ruth. Through it all, there are two constants: our disobedience, and God’s patience and love.
There were three waves of exiles returning to Jerusalem.
The first one of 50 thousand was under the leadership of Zerubabel. They spent time rebuilding the Temple.
The second wave was under Ezra. They focused on Worship. You can see the personal mission statement for Ezra in Ezra 7:10: “For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the Lord, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.”
The third wave is under the leadership of Nehemiah. They work on rebuilding the wall around Jerusalem. Is it always easy for you when living in God’s will? NO! Nehemiah was mocked, taunted, threatened. His answer: Cry out to God! He not only prayed hard, he worked hard. How do you respond when things don’t go as planned? How quickly do you give up when there are obstacles in your way? God wants to use you to accomplish His purposes, but the path ahead won’t always be easy.
The big lesson for today is:
“God’s Word helps us refocus, re-center, remember, and rebuild.”
Which is easier to repair, issues on the outside or issues on the inside? God’s people took care of the Temple and the walls, but their hearts were still in bad shape. When it comes to the internal issues of the heart, we must learn we are dependent on God’s help. Specifically, His Word. Is it easier to say “thank you” or develop an attitude of gratitude that is able to give thanks in all circumstances? Can you more easily develop a habit of driving the speed limit or have a mindset change that you are under authority? God works through His Word to change our heart. Through consistent time in the Word, God can change us from the inside out.
The sermons from Faith Bible Church are here in blog format. You can search based on year [drop down menu], month, series, book of the Bible, or preacher. Some include video, notes, and even the bulletin. Enjoy!