What an amazing sound it must have been. In Nehemiah, the people of God had restored the walls and gates of the city as well as the temple of God. They were so elated they let out a sound that could be heard far away. Wouldn’t it be wonderful, if the people of God today could recapture that cry-that sound of rejoicing? It is possible!!! Several things led up to the restoration in Nehemiah, and I want to share those things with you:
- They heard, LOVED, and responded to The Word of God (Neh. 8:1-9)
Read chapter 8, from start to finish, the honored subject is the Word of God being read to the people. Interestingly enough, reading chapter 8 of Nehemiah reminds me of our weekly church services. There was worship, preaching, fellowship, and response, a whole ordered service. The Word of God was the priority – hearing what God had revealed, sharing it, and responding to it. The modern church, LGBT-affirming church, must recapture a passion and love for the Word of God. There will be NO SOUND OF REJOICING WITHOUT IT. The Word gives us cause to rejoice, so we must always have a passion for it.
- They confessed their sins, repented, and separated themselves from sin (Neh. 9:2)
When they heard the Word, they realized that in order to have God’s Presence and the Restoration of their lives, they had to repent of anything they had been doing that may have grieved God. Sin and worldliness grieve God. The people of God even separated themselves from the practices around them (v. 2). There will be NO SOUND OF REJOICING UNTIL WE LEARN THE POWER OF REPENTANCE. God loves us and because of that love, He convicts us of sin. Thank God for His Precious Spirit’s convicting power. Today, if there is any sin in your life, repent. Ask Him to forgive you. And as you do, you are one step closer to hearing the sound of rejoicing!!!
- They worshipped (Neh. 11:23; 12:27-31)
Worship IS THE SOUND OF REJOICING! The Bible tells us that “in His presence is the fullness of joy” (Psa. 16:11), and He inhabits the praises of His people (Psa. 22:3). So, in order for us to release the sound of rejoicing, we need His presence, and His Presence is drawn to the sound of worship. It is time to release the sound of worship!
- They committed themselves to God (Neh. 10)
Nehemiah 10 is about a nation of people going before God and signing a covenant that basically said, “whatever it takes…” God wants a people who will covenant with Him to do whatever it takes. He wants Abrahamic people who are willing to give up that which is most precious for the cause of the Kingdom; He wants Estheric people who are willing to risk everything so that some might be saved; He wants Nehemaic people who will release a sound of rejoicing so loud that it can be heard far away. This level of committment isn’t easy. One must be willing to give up comfort, traditions, dignity… Salvation is free, but a certain sound, a sound of rejoicing is costly.
Today, I encourage you, give your life to Jesus, get your heart right before Him, and let a sound of rejoicing be heard so loud that it can be heard through your day-to-day actions, let a spiritual sound be released that is so loud that family and friends hear it, and that it is a witness to all around you, THAT YOU SERVE A RESTORING, REBUILDING KING