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Apr19SatApril 19, 2014Today is the last day for this Lenten journey. I trust that your daily reading of Ezra and Nehemiah and Acts, got you excited about things to come. When you walk by faith the distance you travel is immeasurable. Despite the odds against them, they re-built the wall and the temple and God was with them. As the church exploded in Acts, the same power that was with the rebuilders was with the early church. They went in boldness and power because God always keeps his promises to the faithful, wholehearted believers. In 2014 we can still stand on these promises. The same promise given to David is still in effect. Nothing has changed except the body of Christ has decided it wants to go it alone in their own strength. Deuteronomy 32:18 “You deserted the Rock, who fathered you; you forgot the God who gave you birth. 19 The Lord saw this and rejected them because he was angered by his sons and daughters. 20 “I will hide my face from them,” he said, “and see what their end will be; for they are a perverse generation, children who are unfaithful.” Obviously that has not worked out well for us. So we are asking that God turn His face to shine upon us (Numbers 6) once again and that the power of the Holy Spirit will once again be poured out upon his people. Tomorrow we will give praise to God and celebrate that Jesus has risen and the promises of God are still in effect.
As we see in Nehemiah the people came together in covenant and said we will not neglect the house of the Lord. They did this because they saw how disobedient they had been. Nehemiah 9:33 “In all that has happened to us, you have remained righteous; you have acted faithfully, while we acted wickedly. 34 Our kings, our leaders, our priests and our ancestors did not follow your law; they did not pay attention to your commands or the statutes you warned them to keep. 35 Even while they were in their kingdom, enjoying your great goodness to them in the spacious and fertile land you gave them, they did not serve you or turn from their evil ways. 36 “But see, we are slaves today, slaves in the land you gave our ancestors so they could eat its fruit and the other good things it produces. 37 Because of our sins, its abundant harvest goes to the kings you have placed over us. They rule over our bodies and our cattle as they please. We are in great distress.” They had confessed, as we must that we have sinned before God. Nehemiah 9:38 “In view of all this, we are making a binding agreement, putting it in writing, and our leaders, our Levites and our priests are affixing their seals to it.” Nehemiah 10:28 “The rest of the people—priests, Levites, gatekeepers, musicians, temple servants and all who separated themselves from the neighboring peoples for the sake of the Law of God, together with their wives and all their sons and daughters who are able to understand— 29 all these now join their fellow Israelites the nobles, and bind themselves with a curse and an oath to follow the Law of God given through Moses the servant of God and to obey carefully all the commands, regulations and decrees of the Lord our Lord.”As we continue to pray for revival we must be that committed also. At the dedication of the wall two choirs were assigned and they celebrated the dedication with songs of thanksgiving. Tomorrow we will celebrate that Jesus was and is worthy. Revelation 5:12 “In a loud voice they were saying: “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honour and glory and praise!” So as we end this Lenten season we end it with promise knowing that God always keeps his promises. We join with Solomon in saying, 1 Kings 8:56 “Praise be to the Lord, who has given rest to his people Israel just as he promised. Not one word has failed of all the good promises he gave through his servant Moses. 57 May the Lord our God be with us as he was with our ancestors; may he never leave us nor forsake us. 58 May he turn our hearts to him, to walk in obedience to him and keep the commands, decrees and laws he gave our ancestors. 59 And may these words of mine, which I have prayed before the Lord, be near to the Lord our God day and night, that he may uphold the cause of his servant and the cause of his people Israel according to each day’s need, 60 so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the Lord is God and that there is no other. 61 And may your hearts be fully committed to the Lord our God, to live by his decrees and obey his commands, as at this time.” To God be the Glory!