Friday, August 4, 2017

The Three R's

O. T. #1,035  "The Three R's"
August 4, 2017
Summary of Ezra
I fell upon my knees, and spread out my hands unto the LORD my God. Ezra 9:5


Do you recall the R's in school-readin', ritin', and 'rithmetic?(Sung to the tune of the hickory stick.) They were the essentials of a well rounded education. Well, today as we review this book, we find the 3 R's in a well rounded spiritual life-repentance, revival, and reformation.

Ezra, a Jewish scribe and priest, wrote this book to teach is people of their history and to learn from their ways (mistakes included). The southern kingdom of Judah had been taken captive by Babylon, and remained there 70 years during the Mede and Persian Empires. When it was in God's timing for them to return to Jerusalem, Cyrus sent the first of group of returnee Jews (about 5,000), who were led by Zerubbabel. Their purpose was to rebuild the Temple of God and the city. They were challenged by local enemies, who caused the reconstruction to take 20 years to complete.

Some 57years later, Ezra led the second group of returnees (about 2,000) with the purpose of  evaluating the situation for King Artaxerxes and reporting to him, as well as establishing a religious education system. While there, he led repentance and revival of the Jews who had intermarried pagans. Included in that group were priests and Levites. Separation from the heathens was demanded by God for His chosen nation. As the disobedient Jews repented, their nation was restored back to God.

Then, some 12 years later, Nehemiah returns to Jerusalem, leading the third group of returnees. Their purpose was to rebuild the wall around  the city and support Ezra's reformation. We will study about this in the next book They had their challenges, also.

Are we discouraged by what is happening in our nation, in our community, in our church, in our family? We could be the leader that God wants to raise up to lead them to the 3 R's. It begins with prayer, as Ezra demonstrated for us. As we trust God, He will work it all out for His glory and our good.
As Ezra prayed, in 9:8-15 for a little space grace, to be nailed to the wall, for God to extend His mercy, to repair the desolations and wall. In addition, he confessed they had forsaken God's commandments, for they could not stand before God. As His Word was read, repentance came.
Folks, let us pray for our leaders as we are in  spiritual warfare.


Pray, pray, pray.

Repent, beg God for revival, and reformation in our nation.

Hold up His Holy Word.


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