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Last time we met we learned about God made the people joyful. Our next section is Ezra 7. I don’t know that I’ll get through the entire chapter today, but thought I would put up a youtube reading of this chapter for you. I’m just doing the first few verses, Ezra 7:1-10.
We know the temple has been built, we know that people celebrated for days afterwards. So what will happen next with the Israelites?
Ezra was a man, whose job was to be a scribe. He was skilled in the Law of Moses. Do you remember that God gave the law to the people? The law of Moses is the first five books of the Old Testament. These books were a specialty of Moses. Now Ezra had everything he wanted or needed. All he had to do was ask for it and the king would give it to him. This was due to the fact that God’s hand was upon him.
I read that statement and I just had to think about it for a bit.
Imagine having the favour of the rulership of a land. To know that you can ask for anything and know you’ll get it.. It would be hard I think to maintain a humble heart. To remember that you have this blessing because of God’s favour.
7 Now after this, in the reign of Artaxerxes king of Persia, Ezra the son of Seraiah, son of Azariah, son of Hilkiah, 2 son of Shallum, son of Zadok, son of Ahitub, 3 son of Amariah, son of Azariah, son of Meraioth,4 son of Zerahiah, son of Uzzi, son of Bukki, 5 son of Abishua, son of Phinehas, son of Eleazar, son of Aaron the chief priest— 6 this Ezra went up from Babylonia. He was a scribe skilled in the Law of Moses that the Lord, the God of Israel, had given, and the king granted him all that he asked, for the hand of the Lord his God was on him.
But we see in Verse 10 this line “For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel“. Do you see where Ezra’s heart was? Fixed upon the Law of Moses and sharing his knowledge with the people. Having that focus would have been an aid to him wouldn’t it?
Sometimes I wonder how people do it.
When I read Ezekiel and all the hardships he went through to show the Israelites God’s actions and plans. And now Ezra and the favour showed him by the king. How do people maintain their focus? How do they not let other things distract them from their purpose? I don’t know to be honest.
I know that it is SO easy for me to be distracted by things in life, but then if I stop and think about it (instead of getting down on myself) I think about how I do have focus. I want my lad to grow up to know the Lord, to love him and want to serve him. And how I will stop what I am doing so I can talk with him about various things. I realize that I DO have focus and that nothing really ever detracts from that.
Ezra had focus. He came to the Israelites with that focus intact. Teach them the Law of Moses. Let us have a firm focus like Ezra eh?