Today, let’s look at reconstruction. Reconstruction happens after a time of destruction, defeat, imprisonment, capture, and such. Reconstruction happens when things have been torn down and it is time to start over again. The reconstruction I want us to look at this morning is the reconstruction for those of Jerusalem during the time of Ezra and Nehemiah.
Let me briefly set the stage for what is happening. God’s people had been in bondage. Jerusalem had been defeated and destroyed. They are looking for redemption and reconstruction. Nehemiah has been called out of a place of prominence and called to help his people rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. It was a tremendous feat which most did not think possible. However, Nehemiah was a mighty man of God and what God had called him to do, he was going to do. He understood the power of God. He was not without opposition. At some point, I want to go back and look at what Nehemiah encountered as he sought to do God’s will.
Today, I want to look at what happened once the walls were rebuilt. We will look at this in steps…we will call the steps of reconstruction. I think this has so much to teach us as His people in our lives, our churches and our world when it comes to reconstruction. The first step is reading and implementing the Word (in this case, the Torah).
As we begin to look, the people are gathered together for worship. This was no ordinary worship, this was worship unto God as he has provided restoration to His people. They are gathered and notice that the scriptures are read that morning. What reverence do you think they might have had this day?
Notice, they are not only reverent but thankful and excited to hear the Word of the Lord. The crowd was large so there were people disbursed throughout the crowd to help people to hear and understand what was being read…it was that important. They wanted people to get it.
The people are weeping over the reading of the scripture. They could be weeping because of what the Word is telling them and where they have so far strayed or they could be because this is such a pivotal moment for them and to just hear the Word is that important.
This is where the Word is implemented for the people. They are reading the Torah. They are beginning to understand it. It was not enough to just read and understand…they now needed to put it into practice. They did so with the festival of the booths. They learned from what we know as Leviticus.
This accounts for what we will refer to as step 1 of the reconstruction.
Why is this important? There are couple of lessons from this that I want us to make note of…
First, they were eager to hear the Word of God. It was something they were looking forward to. It was not an obligation. They were getting to hear from God. That was important to them and should be important to us.
Imagine what might happen if we looked at the Word of God the same way. We open our Bibles and read for many reasons…many of them not the best of reasons. But the Word of God is alive and active, sharper than any two edged sword. God has much to say and one of the ways He has chosen to communicate with us is through the Bible. Do you look at it as God’s way of communication with you?
Second, they heard the Word and understood it. This meant that they took the time to understand it. They put in the effort to really find out what the Word was telling them.
Third, when they realized what the Word of God was saying, they put it into action. How many times do we hear the Word, learn the Word, understand the Word, but walk away and act the same? It is obvious by how we act that we don’t always put God’s Word into action.
If we want to reconstruct our lives, our homes, our churches, our nation, our world, we begin with the Word of God…listening, understanding, and obeying. Do you want real reconstruction today?