A Vision for God’s People, Nehemiah 8

“They read from the book, from the Law of God, clearly, and they gave the sense, so that the people understood the reading.” Nehemiah 8:8

Have you ever been convicted by reading the Bible? Or have you ever heard a sermon that struck you in the heart and convicted you of your sin? This is why we need fundamental habits today as Christians: Prayer, Bible study, and church assistance.

In Nehemiah 8 the real miracle is beginning. God used the rebuilding of the wall as a rallying point in order to convict the people of their sin. Sometimes God uses ancillary causes in our lives in order to bring us back to relationship with him. A lost job, sickness, or a marriage problem can all be methods that God uses to bring you back into relationship with him.

God’s vision for you is to not merely be saved, but to be a disciple of Jesus (in other words, a real Christian).

There are three fundamentals to make your life everything God wants it to be:

1. God transforms us through prayer. When we make time to be with God, the Holy Spirit has the opportunity to speak to us and convict us of our sin (Acts 17:11). A prayerless life is one that lacks conviction, power, and a purpose.

2. God transforms us through Bible study.
Reading the Bible gives us full access to understand the principles of what God wants. It also serves as a manual for equipping the saints (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

3. God transforms us through community. So often church is maligned as being boring or irrelevant. However, there are many churches that focus on developing people through service and communal living. As Nehemiah 8 demonstrates, there is something very special in joining others to celebrate a common cause and a great God!

As Paul instructs us in Hebrews 10:24-25: And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”

In my adolescent years my parents forced me to go church and I hated it. I sat there bored out of my mind anxiously waiting for that final prayer so that I could get on with my life. Once I found Jesus and accepted his salvation, I found myself enjoying the entire experience. Prayer is not a chore, Bible study is relevant and interesting, and going to church has become one of my favorite weekly activities.

However, at times this has been a painful experience as I discovered how much sin there is in my life and how far I have to go to become the person God wants me to be. Therefore…

4. God transforms us when we allow him to. Consider that God gave us free will to decide our own fate. If we allow him access into our hearts, he will do what he has promised. But our own unbelief and rebellion will always impede the perfect work of God in our lives (Matthew 13:57-58).

You will decide whether you will spend an eternity with God or an eternity apart from Him… Have you made the decision for Christ?