Sunday March 2, 2014 – Part of every believer’s experience in their walk with Christ is reflecting on God’s Word, through His Word and then responding to Him in prayer. Reflecting on the goodness and grace of God should be important to those that love and follow Him.
We serve a God that will deliver you time after time after time. He will. Now should we use that as an excuse to sin? God forbid. That’s not Christianity. I don’t know what that is, but it’s not Christianity. – Pastor Dwayne Terry
How To Reflect
A Practical Guide to Building, Part 08
Reflecting on God through His word and responding to Him in prayer and worship must be a part of every believer’s experience.
The Reflection: the greatness of God.
Nehemiah 9:1-5 – On the twenty-fourth day of the same month, the Israelites gathered together, fasting and wearing sackcloth and putting dust on their heads. 2 Those of Israelite descent had separated themselves from all foreigners. They stood in their places and confessed their sins and the sins of their ancestors. 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, and spent another quarter in confession and in worshiping the LORD their God. 4 Standing on the stairs of the Levites were Jeshua, Bani, Kadmiel, Shebaniah, Bunni, Sherebiah, Bani and Kenani. They cried out with loud voices to the LORD their God. 5 And the Levites–Jeshua, Kadmiel, Bani, Hashabneiah, Sherebiah, Hodiah, Shebaniah and Pethahiah–said: “Stand up and praise the LORD your God, who is from everlasting to everlasting.” “Blessed be your glorious name, and may it be exalted above all blessing and praise.
David Wells: “God rests too inconsequentially upon the church. His truth is too distant, his grace too ordinary, his judgment too benign, his gospel too easy, and His Christ too common.”
Nehemiah 9:6 – You alone are the LORD. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you.
The Reflection: The Goodness of God.
Romans 15:4 – For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
1. Forming (7-18).
Nehemiah 9:16-17 – “But they, our ancestors, became arrogant and stiff-necked, and they did not obey your commands. 17 They refused to listen and failed to remember the miracles you performed among them. They became stiff-necked and in their rebellion appointed a leader in order to return to their slavery. But you are a forgiving God, gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love. Therefore you did not desert them,
- Leading (19-21).
- Providing (22-25).
Nehemiah 9:25 – They captured fortified cities and fertile land; they took
possession of houses filled with all kinds of good things, wells already dug, vineyards, olive groves and fruit trees in abundance. They ate to the full and were well-nourished; they reveled in your great goodness.
4. Correcting (26-30).
Nehemiah 9:26-30 – But they were disobedient and rebelled against you; they turned their backs on your law. They killed your prophets, who had warned them in order to turn them back to you; they committed awful blasphemies. 27 So you delivered them into the hands of their enemies, who oppressed them. But when they were oppressed they cried out to you. From heaven you heard them, and in your great compassion you gave them deliverers, who rescued them from the hand of their enemies. 28 “But as soon as they were at rest, they again did what was evil in your sight. Then you abandoned them to the hand of their enemies so that they ruled over them. And when they cried out to you again, you heard from heaven, and in your compassion you delivered them time after time. 29 “You warned them in order to turn them back to your law, but they became arrogant and disobeyed your commands. They sinned against your ordinances… Stubbornly they turned their backs on you, became stiff-necked and refused to listen. 30 For many years you were patient with them. By your Spirit you warned them through your prophets. Yet they paid no attention, so you gave them into the hands of the neighboring peoples.
The reflection: The grace of God.
Nehemiah 9:31-33 – But in your great mercy you did not put an end to them or abandon them, for you are a gracious and merciful God. 33 In all that has happened to us, you have remained righteous; you have acted faithfully, while we acted wickedly.
Hebrews 4:14-16 – “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
Romans 5:20 – “But where sin increased, grace increased all the more.” Our Binding Agreement
Nehemiah 9:38 – “In view of all this, we are making a binding agreement, putting it in writing, and our leaders, our Levites and our priests are affixing their seals to it.”
1. Personal. 2. Practical. 3. Public.