DEVOTION:THIS KIND OF RESPONSE PLEASES GOD!

In Chapter 8 we encounter a very interesting phenomenon. The people desired to hear from God.

All the people came together as one in the square before the Water Gate. They told Ezra the teacher of the Law to bring out the Book of the Law of Moses, which the Lord had commanded for Israel. Nehemiah 8:1

 

Ezra the teacher of the Law responded positively.

So on the first day of the seventh month Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly, which was made up of men and women and all who were able to understand. He read it aloud from daybreak till noon as he faced the square before the Water Gate in the presence of the men, women and others who could understand. And all the people listened attentively to the Book of the Law. Nehemiah 8:2-3

Here is the people’s attitude toward the word of God.

Ezra opened the book. All the people could see him because he was standing above them; and as he opened it, the people all stood up. Nehemiah 8:5

 

As Ezra continued, the people gave this response

Ezra praised the Lord, the great God; and all the people lifted their hands and responded, “Amen! Amen!” Then they bowed down and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground. Nehemiah 8:6

 

The goal for reading the law was very clear.

They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read. Nehemiah 8:8

Then there was this high level examination of the Law.

On the second day of the month, the heads of all the families, along with the priests and the Levites, gathered around Ezra the teacher to give attention to the words of the Law.Nehemiah 8:13

 

 

 

This resulted in a discovery.

They found written in the Law, which the Lord had commanded through Moses, that the Israelites were to live in temporary shelters during the festival of the seventh month and that they should proclaim this word and spread it throughout their towns and in Jerusalem: “Go out into the hill country and bring back branches from olive and wild olive trees, and from myrtles, palms and shade trees, to make temporary shelters”—as it is written. Nehemiah 8:14-15

 

Now here is the ultimate response:

So the people went out and brought back branches and built themselves temporary shelters on their own roofs, in their courtyards, in the courts of the house of God and in the square by the Water Gate and the one by the Gate of Ephraim. The whole company that had returned from exile built temporary shelters and lived in them. From the days of Joshua son of Nun until that day, the Israelites had not celebrated it like this. And their joy was very great. Nehemiah 8:16-17

 

This is the kind of response we read in the book of James:

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do. Nehemiah 1:22-25

 

APPLICATION:

  1. The response of these people was instant. How is your response to God’s word? When God speaks to us, He expects a response. This response depends on the message. It pleases God when His people respond instantly to His message.
  2. Any preacher will tell you, they are sometimes puzzled by unresponsiveness to the preaching of the word. This happens more often than not. The only encouragement for any preacher or teacher of the word is this; once you are done preaching, you have accomplish your assignment before God. The audience is responsible for their response.
  3. God’s word will accomplish its purpose in the life of any listener who hears or reads God’s word.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17

  1. But instant obedience is what is pleasing to God. Seek to respond to God instantly when God’s word speaks to you.
  2. Has God spoken to you lately?
    1. How was your response?
    2. Is God pleased with your response today?
    3. Are you pleased with how you respond to God’s message?

 

So the people went out and brought back branches

And built themselves temporary shelters on their own roofs,

 In their courtyards, in the courts of the house of God

 And in the square by the Water Gate and the one by the Gate of Ephraim.

 The whole company that had returned from exile

 Built temporary shelters and lived in them.

 From the days of Joshua son of Nun until that day,

 the Israelites had not celebrated it like this.

And their joy was very great.

Nehemiah 8:16-17

This was Instant Obedience

And

 

THIS KIND OF RESPONSE PLEASES GOD!

By Pastor Shadrack Ruto

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