FRIDAY May 27, 2022
Can You Be a Comfort to Someone?
It came to pass in the month of Chislev, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the citadel, that Hanani one of my brethren came with men from Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews who had escaped, who had survived the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem. And they said to me, “The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province are there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem is also broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.”
Now that we have a better understanding of the reasons why the Jews were taken into captivity in Babylon, we shall have a better grasp of the book of Haggai. Remember, only 50,000 Jews returned to their land after 70 years of captivity in Babylon. When they finally returned to their beloved city of Jerusalem, they could hardly believe their eyes. They saw the utter destruction of Jerusalem’s walls and a city that lay in ruins.
At this time, the book of Ezra and the book of the Nehemiah were being written. God began to move and place a call on a man named Nehemiah. He would rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. Nehemiah was born in captivity in Persia. The name Nehemiah in Hebrew means “comforted of God,” a similar definition given for the Holy Spirit. Another name for the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity, is the Parakletos––“the Comforter.” He brings help and comfort to a believer’s life (John 14:16-17).
Nehemiah’s bother Hanani returned to Shushan with some other men from Judah. Nehemiah asked him about the Jews who had survived and the condition of Jerusalem. Hanani described the people’s distress and the decimation of the city. The walls needed to be rebuilt. The people living in Jerusalem were in a desperate situation, as their enemies easily harassed them.
Has God begun to lay on your heart a city or a country where people are suffering? On their behalf, as you inquire about their needs, the Lord may call you to pray, give, help and be a source of comfort to them.
Let me say that for comfort, there is no thought more full of sweetness than that of an eternal God engaged in Christ Jesus to His people; to love and bless, and save them all....
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