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We have powerful readings in Nehemiah today! Just to frame up for us the date of these readings, in chapter 8 verse 2 we are reading about October 8, 444 B.C. Verses 2 & 3 today tell us: "So on October 8 Ezra the priest brought the scroll of the law before the assembly, which included the men and women and all the children old enough to understand. He faced the square just inside the Water Gate from early morning until noon and read aloud to everyone who could understand. All the people paid close attention to the Book of the Law."
You'll note in verse 2 that we read about Ezra for the first time in the book of Nehemiah. And of course we just recently read the book of Ezra. Ezra and Nehemiah were contemporaries. Ezra was a priest and scribe - a religious leader - whereas Nehemiah was the governor - not a member of the religious establishment nor a prophet. However, it's important to note that Nehemiah was a layman who was very devoted to God! Nehemiah pursued God's will in a secular world. Do you suppose that you and I could learn something for our lives today from Nehemiah's devotion to God as a layperson? As a layperson, are you living your life fully devoted to God and pursuing God's will? Let us live like Nehemiah encourages us to live in chapter 8 verse 10 today! "Don't be dejected and sad, for the joy of the LORD is your strength!" What do you think Nehemiah meant here by saying the joy of the Lord is your strength? Today, in your life, is the joy of the Lord your strength? If not, will you pray to know the joy of the Lord as your strength?
Worship God: Chris Tomlin does a nice job quoting from Nehemiah 8:10 - for the joy of the Lord is our strength! - in his song "Holy is the Lord":
Is the joy of the Lord your strength? Click here for Strength!
Please join us in memorizing and meditating on a verse of Scripture today: "The joy of the LORD is your strength." Nehemiah 8:10 (NIV)
Prayer Point: Pray for joy in the Lord today. Pray that the joy of the Lord is your strength, today and forevermore!
Comments from You: What verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!