Day 17 - 40 Days in the Old Testament

Dr Jim Brown's TruNorth Devotional
40 Days in the Old Testament

Nehemiah 9:3
“They stood where they were and read from the Book of the Law of the LORD their God for a quarter of the day, then spent another quarter confessing and worshipping the LORD their God.”

Nehemiah was the Cupbearer to the Persian King Artaxerxes. Thus, he was in a strategic position and had earned favor with the King. One day after he prayed to God, he asked the King and was granted permission to lead more Israeli exiles back to Jerusalem. In addition, he was given financial and material support from the King, authorization to become the Governor of Judea and Jerusalem, and then permission to lead the Israeli people in rebuilding the Jerusalem walls.
The walls around Jerusalem – that Ezra (the spiritual leader) and Nehemiah (the Governor) led in rebuilding – were to protect the people and allow them to settle peacefully once again in the land. The walls represented God's protection and care for His people. The Law of Moses (aka the Torah) showed God's desire to consecrate His people and make them holy.

Jesus prayed similarly for us to His Father in John 17 – "My prayer is not that You take them out of this world, but that You protect them from the Evil One. They are not of this world, even as I am not. Sanctify them by the Truth, Your Word is Truth."

Do you feel protected? Are you aware that our Enemy is alive and active? 1 Peter 5:8-9 says, "Be alert and of sober mind. Your adversary – the devil – roams about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith."

Reread today's verse and note what God's people did back then. That was a serious "church service"!

We today know nothing of that kind of time spent in Scripture reading, confessing to God, and then worshipping. Maybe we should.

Prayer: LORD, I do love you and worship you. Forgive me for spending too little time in worship with You. You are the LORD, my God. Amen.