Read Nehemiah 9 -- 10
In Today's Reading:
Fasting and confession of sins; reading of the Law; confession of God's goodness; new covenant to keep the Law
Ezra stood out as a godly man because he knew the Scriptures. Not only did Ezra lead in reading from the Law, but the Levites also read the Law of God to the people and explained its meaning so the people would understand the Scriptures (Nehemiah 8:7-8). Teaching the Word of God was so important that it is mentioned seven times in one chapter (8:2,3,7,8,9,12,13). This points out how essential it is for His people to read all of the Bible from Genesis to Revelation.
The Israelites were taught the meaning of the Festival of Tabernacles, also called Booths or Sukkoth. Sukkoth celebrated the fall (second) harvest and commemorated the 40 years their ancestors dwelt in temporary shelters, also called booths or tabernacles, in the wilderness (Leviticus 23:42-43). On the 24th day of Tishri (September/October), all the Israelites assembled to fast and pray, confessing their sins (Nehemiah 9:1). The Festival of Tabernacles had been observed as required by the Law. But, then there was a movement of the Holy Spirit following the reading of the Scriptures, as the Levites continued to read from the Scriptures for about three hours and for the next three hours the people confessed their sins and worshiped the Lord (9:2-3). The Levites were also led to have the people stand up and praise the Name of the Lord (9:5).
The priests revealed how God, because of His great love, had provided His good Spirit to instruct them (9:19-21). The same Holy Spirit still guides believers into all Truth as they read all the Truth (John 16:8,13). The Holy Spirit will also guide all Christians who are willing to be led into the occupations or positions God has chosen for us to most effectively serve Him and to prepare us for our eternal inheritance. The Holy Spirit alone can enlighten our minds, impart conviction of sin, and empower us to live a sanctified (holy) life (I Corinthians 2:16; 6:11; Ephesians 3:16).
As the Creator (Nehemiah 9:6). God created all things by Jesus Christ (Colossians 1:16).
9:18 wrought = committed; 9:22 divide them into corners = allotted and set boundaries; 9:25 fat = rich; 9:29 withdrew the shoulder = turned away; hardened their neck = were stubborn; 10:1 Tirshatha = governor; 10:28 Nethinims = Temple attendants or servants; 10:31 leave = forego, the 7th year's crop.
Pray for Carl and Joyce Main, Cadence International · The International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by a child of God · BPM Staff: Rick Hash · Government Official: Rep. Don Young (AK) · Country: Eritrea (4 million) in eastern Africa · Major languages: English and Tigrinya · Religious freedom · 51% Muslim; 40% Eritrean Orthodox; 4% Catholic; 1.5% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Ask, seek, and knock through prayer, knowing God promises to answer (Matthew 7:7-8).
Optional Reading: II Corinthians 11
Memory Verse for the Week: II Timothy 3:16