The thought of the remnant rising is both exciting and discouraging at the same time. It is like when they cheered at the completion of the foundation. Ezra 3 “And all the people gave a great shout of praise to the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid. 12 But many of the older priests and Levites and family heads, who had seen the former temple, wept aloud when they saw the foundation of this temple being laid, while many others shouted for joy. 13 No one could distinguish the sound of the shouts of joy from the sound of weeping, because the people made so much noise. In our day there is a remnant very much the same as then. Sadly when you look around you see all kinds of churches filled with all kinds of people but there is only remnant of faithful followers. That means not everyone is where they should be in their walk with the Lord. Most would say they are just fine, but a true believer would weep with Daniel 9:5 and say “we have sinned and done wrong. We have been wicked and have rebelled; we have turned away from your commands and laws. 6 We have not listened to your servants the prophets, who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes and our ancestors, and to all the people of the land.” We would also mourn with Nehemiah 1, who said, “I confess the sins we Israelites, including myself and my father’s family, have committed against you. 7 We have acted very wickedly toward you. We have not obeyed the commands, decrees and laws you gave your servant Moses.” Today there is very little confession and repentance and the word sin is no longer used as it might offend someone. This is how you distinguish the true remnant. Malachi states, “you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not.”

    The good news is God is raising up the remnant. Ezra 9:8 “But now, for a brief moment, the Lord our God has been gracious in leaving us a remnant and giving us a firm place in his sanctuary, and so our God gives light to our eyes and a little relief in our bondage. 9 Though we are slaves, our God has not forsaken us in our bondage. He has shown us kindness in the sight of the kings of Persia: He has granted us new life to rebuild the house of our God and repair its ruins, and he has given us a wall of protection in Judah and Jerusalem.”

    So we are joyful today knowing that God is rebuilding his house but at the same time we are saddened at the condition the church is in today.  We look to the Lord for his mercy and his power. Rise up people of God, rise up