“Then the people went out and brought them and made themselves booths, each one on the roof of his house, or in their courtyards or the courts of the house of God, and in the open square of the Water Gate and in the open square of the Gate of Ephraim. So the whole assembly of those who had returned from the captivity made booths and sat under the booths; for since the days of Joshua the son of Nun until that day the children of Israel had not done so. And there was very great gladness. Also day by day, from the first day until the last day, he read from the Book of the Law of God. And they kept the feast seven days; and on the eighth day there was a sacred assembly, according to the prescribed manner.”
Nehemiah 8:16-18 NKJV
Many of us who call ourselves followers of Jesus have, for some time, neglected the things of God. There are many who have not uttered a prayer, have not attended the assembly of believers, or read nary a word from their bibles. They have taken up the life of unbelievers, having sought the matters of the flesh. Very often they have found themselves in captivity, caught up in sins long forgiven, but reinvigorated, thus dominating life.
Continuing to read in Nehemiah, I can see many spiritual truths for many Christians today. The Children of Israel had rebuilt the walls of the great city, and now sat under the giving of the law. At one point the people began to weep, for the became aware of how far they had fallen.
“And Nehemiah, who was the governor, Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, “This day is holy to the Lord your God; do not mourn nor weep.” For all the people wept, when they heard the words of the Law. Then he said to them, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.””
Nehemiah 8:9-10 NKJV
There is joy in coming back to the Lord.
As they read and listened, they were reminded of the things of old. They heard of the Feast of Tabernacles, time when people were instructed to create booths and occupy them during seven day feast, followed by an eighth day. Those who had returned from captivity had not done this since the time of Joshua, the son of Nun.
Doing the things of old, showing the obedience of the time of their first love, made them glad. I can tell you, that returning to my first love, Jesus, has brought great joy and gladness into my life. There have been seasons when I did not read my Scriptures as I should, where I paid lip service to the word of God.
The more the Lord word fills this tabernacle, that of my flesh, the more glad I am within it.
The Feast of Tabernacles has so much importance to those who call upon the name of the Lord. The One who saved us from our sins, took on human flesh, and tabernacled among us. Many scholars believe that Jesus was likely born on the feast of Tabernacles, the Son presented to the world, and circumcised on the eight day, as the flesh of the foreskin was taken away and He was presented to God.
Because Jesus tabernacled among us, He was able to take on our sins and thus pay for them on the cross. He became one of us, that we would have the opportunity to be forgiven and forever be with Him.
Through Christ, we become a tabernacle, a dwelling place for the Holy Spirit. The word of God should be at home in us, for we have been given a Helper to assist us in understanding the word, and acting up on. Where Ezra had assistance to help the people to under stand, God has given us the Holy Spirit.
“Also Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodijah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites, helped the people to understand the Law; and the people stood in their place. So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading.”
Nehemiah 8:7-8 NKJV
Brothers and sisters, let us live as if we are of the Lord, being devoted to spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ. May we be glad that we are His, and may be singleminded in picking up the things of God, dusting them off and celebrating our great faith.
We know that the time is short, that even now the Lord is guiding the world events according to His will. If you are one who has put aside the things of God, let this moment be a cause for revival, for the taking up of old things. If you have not prayed, do so, if you are not reading your bible, begin again. If you have been out of fellowship, find a good bible believing, bible teaching church.
I can tell you, that you will hav e great gladness, a far greater gladness than you could ever have in this world. There is much work to be done.
Let us be found working, pressing on to lead as many people to Jesus as we can. He has given us a calling, a divine mission, and may we be faithful. As we work, may we have the heart of Paul, keeping an eye on the prize.
“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 3:12-14 NKJV
THE PRAYER CHAIR IS OPEN! Send me your requests!