Ezra 9 Living in Challenging Season
Upon Ezra’s return, leaders gave a report that not only the people, but also the “priests and the Levites” had been sucked into the idolatry of the nations that had defeated them. We once again see the primary strategy by the enemy as to “why” he desired this, was “that the holy seed” would be “mixed with the peoples of those lands.” God’s desire then was to keep the blood line through which the “holy seed” or Messiah would come. Had it been “mixed”, the seed would be defiled and Messiah couldn’t come.
This is what caused Ezra to humble himself, was the mixing of the seed as much as anything. It so grieved him he responded with garments, regal attire, pulling out some of his hair and beard and sat humbled before a Holy God.
It wasn’t just humility on the part of Ezra, but as important he called out to the Lord in repentance for the nation and the past leadership of kings, priests and other civil & religious leaders.
Ezra understood that the deliverance they were benefiting from at this time was but for a season; along with knowing the past history from the Lord in His dealings with Israel in mercy and grace, he saw those who were returning and had maintained a righteous standing before the Lord as being positioned for God’s mercy to be extended again. He referenced that season as being an opportunity to be revived, repaired, rebuild and insulation against the wiles of the enemy.
His prayer was they would see and seize the opportunity they had before them, and in that season have a “measure of revival” what would have several characteristics. Judah could be revived; not just restored, but sustained throughout their existence.
To be repaired; literally to be lifted or elevated.
Rebuilding the ruins; to make a stand for righteousness.
To be insulated (“a wall”); to be hedged or closed in.
Ezra’s comprehension was of such a depth, that he recognized in that season, a heightened sense of awareness God’s holiness and purity; along with His desire for that to be true for His people as well.
We are living in similar times and seasons as Ezra found himself. Prayer is crucial, followed by uncompromised obedience by God’s people today. We need to know where we are; a part of remnant or something less. To face these days we need to understand the Lord will sustain us through any kind of situation or circumstance we may encounter.
He has promised to lift up those who walk in humility, not humiliation, before Him and man. He does require we be a people that will stand for righteousness and not something less. As we do, He will hedge us in from the destruction of the enemy; whether that is health, finances, relationships or contentment in our growth in the Lord.