Ezra

NEHEMIAH – GOD’S CALL TO BUILD THE WALL (9)

(January 16, 2023) Hope Flinchbaugh, concludes her reflections on Nehemiah’s commission from God

I’ve been sharing how Nehemiah, although an exile in Babylon, was cupbearer to Artaxerxes the king of Persia.

On learning the plight of his troubled people back home in Jerusalem and the city’s broken-down wall, he had wept and prayed to God for guidance and help (Nehemiah 1).

The outcome was that he obtained permission, and letters of authority, from the king to return home (Nehemiah 2).

In effect Nehemiah responded to God’s call to build that wall… and I’ve been encouraging you, dear reader, to respond to whatever God’s calling on your life may be.

God our amazing helper
Nehemiah 6:15-16NASB declares that, despite opposition, ‘… the wall was completed on the twenty-fifth of the month Elul, in fifty-two days. When all our enemies heard about it, and all the nations surrounding us saw it, they lost their confidence; for they realised that this work had been accomplished with the help of our God.’

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‘A MAN NAMED EZRA’

(May 07, 2022) Brian Bell challenges us to be a worthy servant like ‘a man named Ezra’ …

With these four almost inconspicuous words contained in chapter 7 of the book of Ezra, we are introduced to the character of Ezra.

The book of Ezra tells us about the return of Jewish exiles from Babylon, beginning with those who returned with Zerubbabel and at a later time with Ezra. Ezra and the other exiles who returned to Jerusalem with him, got there about 13 years before the return of Nehemiah and other exiles, described in the book of Nehemiah.

The primary action carried out by the returning exiles as described in Ezra, was the reconstruction of the temple led by Zerubbabel, Ezra’s role is what I would describe as leading ‘spiritual renewal’ or ‘revival’ while the focus of Nehemiah was the rebuilding of Jerusalem’s walls which is replete with spiritual applications.

I believe both Ezra and Nehemiah could be said to be men who were ‘directed’ by the Holy Spirit, while those words are not specifically used when speaking of them, I believe it is borne out in the scriptural descriptions given of them. In this meditation I will share only some thoughts about Ezra.

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