She Shares Truth: Remember Me

The past 17 days I have been studying the book of Nehemiah with the She Reads Truth community. It’s been a unique study this time around since I’m also walking through it with a group of 13 local ladies via Facebook messages and an end of the study coffee date. I’d encourage any and all of the She Reads Truthers to grab a few local friends to do the study with you because it is even more enriching!

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This Friday, She Reads Truth, encouraged its readers to take a few minutes to share with the community via their personal blog, Instagram, Facebook or Twitter account their own thoughts from the final chapter of  Nehemiah. The questions we were posed with were: Why does the book of Nehemiah end the way it does? What does God want us to see here about Himself and the Church?

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Here is my attempt to put to words how I see that God was reminding us of our own sinfulness and His great mercy through this final chapter…

The book of Nehemiah is a story of how God called a man out of his everyday life to lead his people (the Israelites) back to their Holy City (Jerusalem) to rebuild the walls of the city and as a result also rebuild the relationship between God and His people. After Nehemiah worked tirelessly to restore the city and set the people right with the Laws of God, he returned to his work with King Artaxerxes (Nehemiah 13:6).

What happened next is what has happened countless times before with the Israelite people…they returned to their sinful ways. The people bought and sold items on the Sabbath (Neh. 13:15), they did not provide for the Levites (Neh. 13:10), they desecrated a chamber in the courts of the house of God (Neh. 13:7), men and women married non-Israelites (Neh. 13:23), and broke many other Laws.

Nehemiah was righteously angry and cried out to God multiple times to remember him and spare him from the consequences of the people’s stubbornness and selfishness. Why did he continuously cry out “Remember this, O My God, and spare me according to the greatness of your steadfast love.”?

Because Nehemiah knew the character of God. Nehemiah knew that our God is a God who is ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and He will not forsake His people. (Neh. 9:17b)

Even though Nehemiah knew the character of God, the people still turned back to their sinful ways. Why? Our natural tendency is to do what is right in our own eyes. The book of Nehemiah reveals that our hearts are naturally sinful and we NEED a savior. We will break laws and rules like its our job when left to our own devices.

The question begs to be asked! How does the cycle of God delivering His people ->the people rejoice and worship God ->the people forget God’s provision and turn to sin -> God allows hardship -> the people cry out to God for deliverance -> God hears their cry and delivers them…rinse and repeat a thousand times….come to an end?

Jesus.

The finale of Nehemiah cries out that we need to remember the goodness of God and to look to our Savior, Jesus Christ, who can save us not for the good way in which we live our life but because of His mercy and His grace! I’m so glad this book is not the end! We as believers can see the hope that comes after Nehemiah’s final cry of “Remember me, O my God, for good”! God does remember us, not because of our own good, but because of the goodness of Jesus.

What a loving, gracious God we have!

“But when the goodness and loving kinds of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to His own mercy” Titus 3:4-5

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If you aren’t a reader of She Reads Truth, I’d encourage you to check out the next study that starts on Monday! We will be studying the book of Titus…what a perfect next book to read after we are left with the knowledge that we need a Savior!

 

 

 

Comments

  1. What a good idea to do the study with some local friends! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Saundra says:

    Thank you for your words. They are so true and a comfort for us that keep on repeating sinful ways. Jesus is the only!!!!! I am a 46 year old adoptee who could never say enough good about adoption. I have wonderful Christian parents (my Momma went to be with The Lord 10 years ago this summer). God has blessed me so much through them and their lives. I have never wanted to find my biological parents but pray for them often that they know The Lord. What you are doing is wonderful and life saving.

  3. I’m a little late in my reading of Nehemiah, but what a powerful study! Thanks for this post, Sarah. Beautiful words and a beautiful space you have here.

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