The ancient Jews returning from the exile had lived in a place of splendor. The newly minted Medo-Persia was built upon the captured greatest city of the ancient world, Babylon. Even though the Jews were a captured people, they lived in the ancient world equivalent of a first world country. Through God’s continued, though quiet, providence, they grew to have decent lives. Some of their people were even rich and powerful. In returning to war torn Jerusalem, they had much to lose. Yet, due to proper leadership, and ready hearts, they were willing to sacrifice it all for the chance at being right with God. Though we don’t need a temple to be justified by God anymore, our opportunity are even greater. We don’t need to focus on justification and salvation but can now focus on relational maturity and cultivating spiritual fruit. But our mindset needs to continue in the tradition of those returning from exile. This was one of willing and meaningful sacrifice. Coming from ease, this is often even harder for us. Overtime, that ease can become our idol and money our new God. Our goal should be to continue to have as tender a heart for God when we are rich as we did when we were poor.
Posted byJosh McGaryPosted inBible Thoughts, blogs, Ezra, teachingTags:2022, bible, Bible Thoughts, Ezra, giving, sacrifice
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. https://sleek.bio/joshmcgary View more posts