Now therefore, our God, the great, the mighty, and the terrible God, who keepest covenant and mercy, let not all the trouble seem little before Thee, that hath come upon us, on our kings, on our princes, and on our priests, and on our prophets, and on our fathers, and on all Thy people, since the time of the kings of Assyria unto this day (Neh. 9:32).
As the Book of the Law was read, a virtual history of Israel was recounted. Times were recalled when the nation had experienced great victories. Those were days when the leaders had chosen to obey the Word of God and walk in His ways. There were also days remembered when the nation had suffered greatly. These were times that their backs had been turned on God. They had chosen to walk in their own way and had failed miserably. But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities (II Pet. 2:10).
There was a clear picture painted of the history of Israel. The history showed that time and again the blessings of God would be on the nation as they were obedient to God. On the opposite side of the coin, the blessings of God were withdrawn as they became disobedient. Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? (Rom. 6:16).
There seems to be an understanding of their own history here. In this verse and those that follow, they offer praise to God for being just in the way He dealt with their wickedness. These scriptures show they see God even blessed them when they were undeserving of it. The chapter closes with them establishing a covenant of service to God.
The lessons to learn from the mistakes of Israel are clear. Trust in God with everything. This is not to be a temporary trust. When something goes wrong, or it is all going perfect, we mustn't allow ourselves to become separated from God. This happens when other gods come into our lives. For whatever reason, we pull away from our trust in the only true God. This is just what the children of Israel did. Keep your faith and trust in the Lord regardless of the circumstances.
Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified (Gal. 2:16).
Thought for Today:
We need to pray, confess our sins, and read and obey God's Word with fervent hearts for revival to sweep through our land.
9:18 wrought great provocations, committed great blasphemy; 9:22 didst divide them into corners, allotted and set boundaries; 9:25 fat, rich; 9:29 withdrew the shoulder, turned away rebelliously; hardened their neck, were stubborn, obstinate; 10:1 Tirshatha, governor; 10:28 Nethinims, Temple attendants or servants; 10:31 leave, forego the 7th year's crop.
As the Creator of heaven and earth (Neh. 9:6). All things were created by Him, and for Him (Col. 1:16).
Prayer Suggestion: Beseech the Lord in intercessory prayer for others when you have questions (Ex. 32:11).
Optional Reading: II Corinthians 11
Memory Verse for the Week: Ecclesiastes 5:4