Daily Bible Reading – Ezra 4; Psalms 113, 127; Luke 9
Today’s Key Passage – Ezra 4:1-24
The Jews returning to Jerusalem from exile wanted nothing more than to rebuild the temple of the Lord. Unfortunately, their task was not an easy one. Not only did they have to deal with the logistics of rebuilding the temple and all of the work involved, they also faced opposition to the rebuilding efforts from their neighbors. When Assyria conquered the northern kingdom of Israel, many people were relocated to live in this region, and now these people wanted to keep the Jews from rebuilding the temple for fear that they would gain power. The enemies of Judah tried several tactics to stop the construction. First, they attempted to infiltrate the people of Judah by offering to help so they could sabotage their efforts. (4:2) When this failed, they tried to stop the construction by discouraging and intimidating the Jews. (4:4-5) Finally, they took their complaint to the king, falsely accusing the Jews of rebellion. In the short term, all of this opposition worked and the rebuilding efforts were temporarily put on hold. (4:23-24) Eventually though, God’s plans could not be thwarted, and the temple was ultimately completed.
When we step out in faith in service to God, we too may face opposition. This opposition might come from unbelievers, or perhaps even friends and family members. Sometimes, the opposition comes from powers and principalities that we cannot truly understand. It can be easy for us to become frustrated with this opposition, especially when it works in temporarily stopping our efforts. However, we can take comfort in knowing that when we are following Christ and acting according to His will, His plans will ultimately succeed. Our God is all-powerful and completely sovereign, and there is absolutely nothing that can keep Him from accomplishing His mission and achieving His goals. We may sometimes feel like we are facing a brick wall, but to God this wall is simply a hurdle that is easily navigated. When facing opposition, pray for the strength to get through the tough times while maintaining a loving attitude toward your oppressors, and pray for God’s will to be done. God, in His infinite wisdom, will take care of the rest.
During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you? Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.
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Posted on September 26, 2013, in 15 - Ezra and tagged Bible, Christian, Conflict, Daily Bible, Daily Devotional, Faith, God, Jesus, Perseverance, Religion, Service, Trust, Waiting. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.