I went back to the book of Ezra tonight. If you remember, a few weeks back we talked about Ezra chapter 4 where we saw the Israelites rebuilding the temple of God, and the enemy trying to stop them. We saw how accusations were brought before the king and how those accusations were found to be true. We saw a parallel to the sin of mankind.
Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin. (Romans 3:20, NIV)
It’s a sad story, really. Their work on the temple was halted that year, and it would almost seem like the enemy won. But, as Elisabeth Elliot would say, “Of one thing I am perfectly sure: God’s story never ends with ‘ashes.” And so it is in the book of Ezra–the rebuilding has only begun.
As we open our Bible to chapter six we see a new decree, a foreshadow of the New Testament and the cost that was paid for salvation.
“Moreover, I hereby decree what you are to do for these elders of the Jews in the construction of this house of God:” the king says in verse 8, “Their expenses are to be fully paid out of the royal treasury, from the revenues of Trans-Euphrates, so that the work will not stop.”
All this to say that yes, we are are guilty of sin, but while we were yet sinners Christ died for us so that we might be saved. And, like the men in this chapter, our story doesn’t end in ashes. In fact, our salvation has merely begun.
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Tilling the Soil
Read Ezra Chapter 6.
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:23, KJV)
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Darlene Schacht and her husband Michael live in Manitoba Canada where the summers are beautiful and the winters are cold. Together they’ve come to learn that relationships aren’t always easy, but that marriage, the way God intended it to be, is a treasure worth fighting for.
She began her publishing journey about twelve years ago when she pioneered one of the first online magazines for Christian women, known at the time as “Christian Women Online Magazine.” After three years, Darlene left CWO to blog as a solo author at Time-Warp Wife Ministries.
It was also during this transition that she worked alongside actress Candace Cameron Bure to write the NYT Best-Selling book, Reshaping it All: Motivation for Spiritual and Physical Fitness. Reshaping it All was the winner of both the 2011 USA Best Book Awards and the 2012 Christian Reading Retailers Choice Awards.
Author of more than 15 books, Darlene continues to write and to minister to her readers through her blog at TimeWarpWife.com.
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You are loved by an almighty God,
The Time-Warp Wife