May 21, 2017

May 21, 2017

EZRA 1-3

Focus Verse: Yet many of the priests and Levites and heads of fathers’ households, the old men who had seen the first temple, wept with a loud voice when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, while many shouted aloud for joy, so that the people could not distinguish the sound of the shout of joy from the sound of the weeping of the people, for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the sound was heard far away.
Ezra 3:12-13

 

There’s one of two things going on here. Either these people are crying for joy because they are so happy that they have been restored back to their homeland and are rebuilding the temple or they are crying because this temple they are building is nowhere close to as grand and majestic as the temple Solomon built. My money is on the latter. In fact, I’m almost certain of it.

 

There’s a danger in this too. I have no doubt that Solomon’s temple was unbelievable. I think it would be amazing even in today’s standards. But we get ourselves in trouble when we spend our time weeping over yesterday. We miss our moment when we compare today with what has happened in the past.

 

Like I said, there is no doubt that Solomon built an incredible temple for the Lord, and there was no way the Israelites were going to be able to duplicate that temple, especially having just come out of exile. They didn’t have the resources!

 

But instead of looking at what they wouldn’t be able to do, why not look at what God had done! They were back in the Promised Land! The nation of Israel was practically wiped off the face of the planet, and now they were back! When had anything like this every happened? So while the temple might not be overlaid in gold with every sort of exotic gem shining forth from each room, the fact that these people were even in the position to be rebuilding the old temple is far more glorious that any man-made temple could ever be!

 

But that’s our problem. We get fixated on the “good ole days”. There were no problems in the “good ole days”. Nothing ever went wrong. It was all sunshine and rainbows. But we forget that even when we were in “the good ole days”, all we could look at back then were the “good ole days” that came before that.

 

God is doing a new thing. He is doing it today. Not yesterday. He doesn’t want you to build Solomon’s temple. He doesn’t want another Azusa Street Revival. He wants a (Fill in the blank for whatever street you live on) Street Revival. Stop playing the comparison game and be the you that God has called you to be. Do what He has called you to do!

 

Greater things are waiting to be done…but we have to stop crying over the old temple and embrace the new that God has in store.

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