Ezra 6: Mission Accomplished

14 So the elders of the Jews continued to build and prosper under the preaching of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah, a descendant of Iddo. They finished building the temple according to the command of the God of Israel and the decrees of Cyrus, Darius and Artaxerxes, kings of Persia. 15 The temple was completed on the third day of the month Adar, in the sixth year of the reign of King Darius. -Ezra 6:14-15

God answered the prayers of the people to once again rebuild the temple. They did, encouraged by Haggai and Zechariah.

The result? The project was completed. No longer would the temple lie in ruins. It would once again serve as the center of Jewish worship.

We often find ourselves wondering if we will ever complete the mission God has given us, the project of the day, or even the task at hand. What God has called us to do, he will empower us to complete.

Do not be discouraged. Trust in the Lord and do the work to which he has called you. He will be faithful. His power is more than enough.

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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.

Ezra 5: A Ministry of Encouragement

Now Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the prophet, a descendant of Iddo, prophesied to the Jews in Judah and Jerusalem in the name of the God of Israel, who was over them. Then Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel and Joshua son of Jozadak set to work to rebuild the house of God in Jerusalem. And the prophets of God were with them, supporting them. -Ezra 5:1-2

Many tend to think the message of the prophets was doom and gloom. This was not the case in Ezra. Two Jewish prophets, Haggai and Zechariah, specifically encouraged both the leaders and the people to do what was right.

What was their main role? We are told, “The prophets of God were with them, supporting them.”

A spiritual leaders serves many roles. One important one is the role of supporting others in need of encouragement. People often known what to do, but need someone to cheer them on to do it.

You may not feel like a prophet, but could you encourage someone to do what is right today? If you do and I do and those around us join in, the world will be a better place and God will be pleased.

 

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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.

Ezra 4: Handling Opposition

Then the peoples around them set out to discourage the people of Judah and make them afraid to go on building. They bribed officials to work against them and frustrate their plans during the entire reign of Cyrus king of Persia and down to the reign of Darius king of Persia. -Ezra 4:4-5

Living obediently to God does not always equal a positive outcome. The Jews who sought to rebuild the temple were discouraged by their neighbors. These individuals even bribed officials to shut down their construction.

We live in a time when many teach that faithful living equals earthly blessing. Scripture does not support this. Here and elsewhere, God’s faithful are often opposed when standing for what is right. In fact, this is often the norm rather than the exception.

We are to do what is right, expect to be treated wrong, and yet do what is right anyway. This is the true teaching of Scripture.

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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.

Ezra 3: Faith Over Fear

Then Joshua son of Jozadak and his fellow priests and Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel and his associates began to build the altar of the God of Israel to sacrifice burnt offerings on it, in accordance with what is written in the Law of Moses the man of God. Despite their fear of the peoples around them, they built the altar on its foundation and sacrificed burnt offerings on it to the Lord, both the morning and evening sacrifices. -Ezra 3:2-3

Only a small number of Jews had returned to Jerusalem. They were surrounded by pagan nations who had grown accustomed to controlling the area. Yet in the midst of these people, God’s people desired to honor him with their actions. In obedience to the Lord, they began to build the altar and offering sacrifices.

We are told they were afraid of the people around them, but obeyed God anyway.

This powerful concept is one we desperately need today. We often seek the approval of others, fearing rejection. Some literally live in fear of what could be done to them if they openly worshiped God.

Yet these Jews revealed a powerful teaching of Scripture–faith over fear. When afraid to do the right thing, do it anyway. See how God responds.

Act in faith over fear today.

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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.