Updated: May 29
Book of the Bible: Ezra & Nehemiah
In approximately 400 BC, the Israelites were allowed to return to their homeland after being exiled for 70 years. Jerusalem was destroyed due to Israel’s disobedience, but God was giving them another chance. While Zerubbabel was rebuilding the temple and Nehemiah was rebuilding the wall, Ezra was responsible for leading the people of Israel back to worshiping God. During this time, Ezra was the nation’s spiritual leader. He served as a priest and a scribe.
When Ezra arrived in Jerusalem, he expected the people to be praising God and following his commands. After all, they had been in exile for 70 years. You’d think they would have learned their lesson, but Ezra was saddened to find out this wasn’t the case. He knew the people needed to change, so he gathered the people and read the word of God to them for hours.
The reading of God’s word pierced their hearts, and they began to see their faults. Ezra was able to bring spiritual reformation to the nation because he read them what God had said. He led people to confess their sins and seek God for forgiveness. Ezra encouraged the people to continue to magnify God and worship only Him.
Ezra and the rest of the Israelites faced great opposition during this time because the surrounding nations didn’t want to see Israel succeed. They tried everything they could to stop the Israelites from building. The other nations had heard the stories about how great the God of Israel was, and they knew if the people ever aligned themselves with Him again, they would be unstoppable. And that’s exactly what they did. Because they returned to God, God established them as a strong nation once again.
When looking at the life of Ezra, we see the significance of having the hand of God on our life. Ezra 7:9b-10 (NLT) tells us, ‘for the gracious hand of his God was on him. This was because Ezra had determined to study and obey the Law of the Lord and to teach those decrees and regulations to the people of Israel.” I would encourage you to be like Ezra, to be determined to study the word of God, to obey it, and to teach it to your family and those around you. Then, pray the hand of God over your life and your children’s life. Believe for God to do a great work in and through you like he did Ezra. Because God can use anyone to make a difference in His world and His kingdom. God can use you to make a difference when you surrender and obey His Word.
By diving into the Word, the people of Israel renewed their relationship with God. John 1:1 says that Jesus is God’s word made flesh. That means that we can renew our relationship with God by diving into a relationship with Jesus. Jesus is our way to the Father. Jesus died to give us eternal life. Once we align our life with him, we can begin to experience this eternal life. When we keep God as our number one priority, we will always know He has our backs, and Jesus will show us the way.
God’s Word is Important
Read God’s word
Pray the hand of God over your family’s life
Parents, 3treesKIDS will also be learning about the life of Ezra this Sunday, both in-person and online.