NEHEMIAH‬ ‭9‬:‭26‬-‭31‬ ‭‬‬

““But despite all this, they were disobedient and rebelled against you. They turned their backs on your Law, they killed your prophets who warned them to return to you, and they committed terrible blasphemies. So you handed them over to their enemies, who made them suffer. But in their time of trouble they cried to you, and you heard them from heaven. In your great mercy, you sent them liberators who rescued them from their enemies. “But as soon as they were at peace, your people again committed evil in your sight, and once more you let their enemies conquer them. Yet whenever your people turned and cried to you again for help, you listened once more from heaven. In your wonderful mercy, you rescued them many times! “You warned them to return to your Law, but they became proud and obstinate and disobeyed your commands. They did not follow your regulations, by which people will find life if only they obey. They stubbornly turned their backs on you and refused to listen. In your love, you were patient with them for many years. You sent your Spirit, who warned them through the prophets. But still they wouldn’t listen! So once again you allowed the peoples of the land to conquer them. But in your great mercy, you did not destroy them completely or abandon them forever. What a gracious and merciful God you are!”

NEHEMIAH‬ ‭9‬:‭26‬-‭31‬ ‭NLT‬‬

The story is the same throughout history. God loves us and always holds the door open. Continually we stray from that open door into a life of sin and misery and yet God continues to keep it available for our repentance. This moment of repentance is the key. For Nehemiah and Israel, there was a true recognition of their own part to play in their own miseries. For many who have tasted the salvation of God, there will always be a push to forget who he is after they have run their course. After a survivor of drowning leaves the life guard, he returns home and forgets about that lifeguard and what he did. Eventually he returns to the beach where he was saved and, if he’s not careful, drown again. This is a picture of the human condition. Christians ought not to be like this. Instead we are to build a relationship with that lifeguard that goes beyond the beach. We must always own up to our past mistakes and be moving away from them toward a godly approach to living. We must confess and repent, not for salvation (which is sure), but for disciplining our hearts and minds. We don’t need to bury the truth as if it never happened. But our old lives do need a gravestone, a eulogy and an epitaph to keep us from falling back into them.

Published by Josh McGary

MY NAME IS JOSH MCGARY. First, I am a Pastor of a small church in Portland, Oregon named Aletheia Bible Fellowship. We call it ABF. I have been a pastor there for the better part of 20 years. I am very eclectic. What I love, I love loudly and immersively. I have notable collections of toys, funko pops, and vinyl. I also infamously love pop culture, comic books, technology, the arts, psychology and philosophy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: