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Steps To Spiritual Renewal / Rebuilding Through God’s Word

Nehemiah 7, 8
Nehemiah 7 1 After the wall had been rebuilt and I had set the doors in place, the gatekeepers, the musicians and the Levites were appointed. 2 I put in charge of Jerusalem my brother Hanani, along with Hananiah the commander of the citadel, because he was a man of integrity and feared God more than most people do. 3 I said to them, “The gates of Jerusalem are not to be opened until the sun is hot. While the gatekeepers are still on duty, have them shut the doors and bar them. Also appoint residents of Jerusalem as guards, some at their posts and some near their own houses.” The List of the Exiles Who Returned 4 Now the city was large and spacious, but there were few people in it, and the houses had not yet been rebuilt. 5 So my God put it into my heart to assemble the nobles, the officials and the common people for registration by families. I found the genealogical record of those who had been the first to return. This is what I found written there: 6 These are the people of the province who came up from the captivity of the exiles whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had taken captive (they returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to his own town, 7 in company with Zerubbabel, Joshua, Nehemiah, Azariah, Raamiah, Nahamani, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispereth, Bigvai, Nehum and Baanah): The list of the men of Israel: 8 the descendants of Parosh 2,172 9 of Shephatiah 372 10 of Arah 652 11 of Pahath-Moab (through the line of Jeshua and Joab) 2,818 12 of Elam 1,254 13 of Zattu 845 14 of Zakkai 760 15 of Binnui 648 16 of Bebai 628 17 of Azgad 2,322 18 of Adonikam 667 19 of Bigvai 2,067 20 of Adin 655 21 of Ater (through Hezekiah) 98 22 of Hashum 328 23 of Bezai 324 24 of Hariph 112 25 of Gibeon 95 26 the men of Bethlehem and Netophah 188 27 of Anathoth 128 28 of Beth Azmaveth 42 29 of Kiriath Jearim, Kephirah and Beeroth 743 30 of Ramah and Geba 621 31 of Mikmash 122 32 of Bethel and Ai 123 33 of the other Nebo 52 34 of the other Elam 1,254 35 of Harim 320 36 of Jericho 345 37 of Lod, Hadid and Ono 721 38 of Senaah 3,930 39 The priests: the descendants of Jedaiah (through the family of Jeshua) 973 40 of Immer 1,052 41 of Pashhur 1,247 42 of Harim 1,017 43 The Levites: the descendants of Jeshua (through Kadmiel through the line of Hodaviah) 74 44 The musicians: the descendants of Asaph 148 45 The gatekeepers: the descendants of Shallum, Ater, Talmon, Akkub, Hatita and Shobai 138 46 The temple servants: the descendants of Ziha, Hasupha, Tabbaoth, 47 Keros, Sia, Padon, 48 Lebana, Hagaba, Shalmai, 49 Hanan, Giddel, Gahar, 50 Reaiah, Rezin, Nekoda, 51 Gazzam, Uzza, Paseah, 52 Besai, Meunim, Nephusim, 53 Bakbuk, Hakupha, Harhur, 54 Bazluth, Mehida, Harsha, 55 Barkos, Sisera, Temah, 56 Neziah and Hatipha 57 The descendants of the servants of Solomon: the descendants of Sotai, Sophereth, Perida, 58 Jaala, Darkon, Giddel, 59 Shephatiah, Hattil, Pokereth-Hazzebaim and Amon 60 The temple servants and the descendants of the servants of Solomon 392 61 The following came up from the towns of Tel Melah, Tel Harsha, Kerub, Addon and Immer, but they could not show that their families were descended from Israel: 62 the descendants of Delaiah, Tobiah and Nekoda 642 63 And from among the priests: the descendants of Hobaiah, Hakkoz and Barzillai (a man who had married a daughter of Barzillai the Gileadite and was called by that name). 64 These searched for their family records, but they could not find them and so were excluded from the priesthood as unclean. 65 The governor, therefore, ordered them not to eat any of the most sacred food until there should be a priest ministering with the Urim and Thummim. 66 The whole company numbered 42,360, 67 besides their 7,337 male and female slaves; and they also had 245 male and female singers. 68 There were 736 horses, 245 mules, 69 435 camels and 6,720 donkeys. 70 Some of the heads of the families contributed to the work. The governor gave to the treasury 1,000 darics of gold, 50 bowls and 530 garments for priests. 71 Some of the heads of the families gave to the treasury for the work 20,000 darics of gold and 2,200 minas of silver. 72 The total given by the rest of the people was 20,000 darics of gold, 2,000 minas of silver and 67 garments for priests. 73 The priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the musicians and the temple servants, along with certain of the people and the rest of the Israelites, settled in their own towns. Nehemiah 8 1 all the people came together as one in the square before the Water Gate. They told Ezra the teacher of the Law to bring out the Book of the Law of Moses, which the Lord had commanded for Israel. 2 So on the first day of the seventh month Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly, which was made up of men and women and all who were able to understand. 3 He read it aloud from daybreak till noon as he faced the square before the Water Gate in the presence of the men, women and others who could understand. And all the people listened attentively to the Book of the Law. 4 Ezra the teacher of the Law stood on a high wooden platform built for the occasion. Beside him on his right stood Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah and Maaseiah; and on his left were Pedaiah, Mishael, Malkijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah and Meshullam. 5 Ezra opened the book. All the people could see him because he was standing above them; and as he opened it, the people all stood up. 6 Ezra praised the Lord, the great God; and all the people lifted their hands and responded, “Amen! Amen!” Then they bowed down and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground. 7 The Levites—Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan and Pelaiah—instructed the people in the Law while the people were standing there. 8 They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read. 9 Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and teacher of the Law, and the Levites who were instructing the people said to them all, “This day is holy to the Lord your God. Do not mourn or weep.” For all the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the Law. 10 Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” 11 The Levites calmed all the people, saying, “Be still, for this is a holy day. Do not grieve.” 12 Then all the people went away to eat and drink, to send portions of food and to celebrate with great joy, because they now understood the words that had been made known to them. 13 On the second day of the month, the heads of all the families, along with the priests and the Levites, gathered around Ezra the teacher to give attention to the words of the Law. 14 They found written in the Law, which the Lord had commanded through Moses, that the Israelites were to live in temporary shelters during the festival of the seventh month 15 and that they should proclaim this word and spread it throughout their towns and in Jerusalem: “Go out into the hill country and bring back branches from olive and wild olive trees, and from myrtles, palms and shade trees, to make temporary shelters”—as it is written. 16 So the people went out and brought back branches and built themselves temporary shelters on their own roofs, in their courtyards, in the courts of the house of God and in the square by the Water Gate and the one by the Gate of Ephraim. 17 The whole company that had returned from exile built temporary shelters and lived in them. From the days of Joshua son of Nun until that day, the Israelites had not celebrated it like this. And their joy was very great. 18 Day after day, from the first day to the last, Ezra read from the Book of the Law of God. They celebrated the festival for seven days, and on the eighth day, in accordance with the regulation, there was an assembly.
Nehemiah 7: The triumphant completion of the wall Nehemiah 8: Spiritual Renewal of Nation and People The reading of God’s Law by Ezra: A lesson on the dire need to study God’s Word. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Ezra 7:10 When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, Lord God Almighty. Jeremiah 15:16    The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes. Psalm 19:8 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. Romans 15:4 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 2 Timothy 3:16 I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me, for I have redeemed you. Isaiah 44:22 Hunger for God’s Word The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes. Psalm 19:8
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