July 28, 2017
Ezra 9-Part 4
LET IT GLOW
A nail is put in a wall and used to hang utensils on it. God intended for the Jews to always be His chosen, loved, and obedient people and nation. Jesus would be given as their nail on which they
could hang their hopes and future.
Ezra offered up a prayer of confession. He confessed God's goodness, the sins of himself and his people in the past and the present, as well as their unworthiness. In verses 13-15, Ezra, in his prayer, admits to their undeserving any blessing of God. He points out 6 things:
- They were guilty of terrible wickedness.
- God in His goodness, had punished them far less than they deserved.
- They were breaking God's commandments, missing wit unbelievers and participating in their wicked behavior. (verse 14)
- They deserved God's judgment because of their unworthiness.
- They were clearly and totally short of God's righteousness. (verse 15)
- Although they were only a small remnant, they were guilty before God. Thus they were so sinful and guilty that they were not worthy to stand in God's presence. (verse 15)
Confession is an absolute essential to receive forgiveness of sin. When we sin, we must confess it before God. Failure to confess means that we bear the guilt of sin ourselves. Are we prepared to bear the guilt and punishment ourselves? Confessing our sins is the key to escaping God's coming judgment.
Romans 6:23 says, For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
1 John 1:9 reassures us, If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
LET IT GROW
Ezra knew the remnant must live obedient and righteous lives if God was going to fulfill His promises to them. God's plan of redemption was to be carried out through the Jews. The Savior and the Word of God was to come through them.
In verse 8, we read that God had showed them a little space grace, a remnant of escape from bondage, had given them a nail in His holy place, to enlighten their eyes to see a hopeful future, and a little reviving opportunity for a new life.
A nail signifies a strong, binding, and secure place in the sanctuary of God's presence. As long as they followed the LORD, obeying His holy commandments, they had security in Him.
A wall was essential for security and defense. Jerusalem's wall was broken down, not only physically, but also spiritually. We will read of Nehemiah leading another remnant to Jerusalem for the purpose of rebuilding its walls.
McGee explains, "That nail is Christ. Christ was nailed on the cross down here so that I might be nailed yonder at the throne of God for eternity. Believers are nailed up there, not on a cross, but in heaven for eternity. A nail is fixed in a sure place. The Jews did not loose their salvation, but blessings and rewards."
In Isaiah 22:22-23, God tells us, And the key of the house of David will I lay upon His shoulder; so He shall open, and none shall shut; and He shall shut, and none shall open. And I will fasten him as a nail in a sure place; and he shall be for a glorious throne to His father's house.
Are we nailed to Christ Jesus? Is He our sure place? Or are we nailed to our job, our bills, our activities, our bank account?
LET IT GO
Be nailed to Jesus, my hope of eternity.