5/23 God's Way

King James Daily Bible Study Devotional
Message Title: God's Way
Date: Wednesday May 23, 2012Today's Chapters: Ezra 9-10

Hello My Friend,

Those whom have called on the Lord Jesus Christ to save them and are trusting in Him alone for their salvation do not have to fear death because they know they will be in heaven one day. Being saved from damnation does not mean it is a free ticket to do as we please and not face any consequences for our actions. Life is hard enough as it is without having to deal with unnecessary suffering, but those who are saved that continue to live in sin are suffering. Why? You are saved by the shed blood of Jesus Christ, He died for you. It's not about living right to save a soul, it's about living right to be thankful to God. We are not perfect, we are going to mess up, but it's time for all Christians to start being responsible and live God's way.
Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.” - Galatians 5:19-24.
When Ezra and the people arrived in Jerusalem they expected to see at least a few of the Jews who managed to escape captivity worshiping, praising God, and giving them some hope that God was in their lives. However, it was just the opposite, the moral and spiritual condition in Jerusalem was terrible and it grieved Ezra to the point that he fell on his knees, spread out his hands to God, and began to pray.

And said, O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift up my face to thee, my God: for our iniquities are increased over our head, and our trespass is grown up unto the heavens. Since the days of our fathers have we been in a great trespass unto this day; and for our iniquities have we, our kings, and our priests, been delivered into the hand of the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity, and to a spoil, and to confusion of face, as it is this day. And now for a little space grace hath been shewed from the LORD our God, to leave us a remnant to escape, and to give us a nail in his holy place, that our God may lighten our eyes, and give us a little reviving in our bondage. For we were bondmen; yet our God hath not forsaken us in our bondage, but hath extended mercy unto us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to give us a reviving, to set up the house of our God, and to repair the desolations thereof, and to give us a wall in Judah and in Jerusalem.” - Ezra 9:6-9.

No matter how strong our faith in God we can fall and it can be hard to face God, the guilt and shame alone keep us in bondage to the sin, but God is still with us, He has not forsaken us. God will lighten our eyes and give us a revival in our bondage so we can escape. That light is Jesus Christ, look to Him and He will give you peace. “
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” - Hebrews 12:1,2.
As the congregation heard Ezra pray they too began to pray and seek forgiveness of their sins. “Now when Ezra had prayed, and when he had confessed, weeping and casting himself down before the house of God, there assembled unto him out of Israel a very great congregation of men and women and children: for the people wept very sore. And Shechaniah the son of Jehiel, one of the sons of Elam, answered and said unto Ezra, We have trespassed against our God, and have taken strange wives of the people of the land: yet now there is hope in Israel concerning this thing. Now therefore let us make a covenant with our God to put away all the wives, and such as are born of them, according to the counsel of my lord, and of those that tremble at the commandment of our God; and let it be done according to the law.” - Ezra 10:1-3.

As the Jews listened to Ezra proclaim the Word of God, they were convicted of their sins, and began confessing them to God. Now, came the hard part, would they follow the Law as they said they would? I imagine we all go to God with some things and say, “I will repent of that sin.”, but if we are not willing to make the effort to repent they are just words and God will not take them seriously. This is where actions prove more than words, keep in mind that repentance of sins takes work and the power of God, it doesn't happen overnight and God knows this. A willing heart will always succeeds, maybe not today or tomorrow, but as long as it keeps taking steps forward it can overcome all sin that holds it bondage. “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” - Galatians 5:1.
One by one, each man who had married a strange woman (not a Jew) had to present himself with his wife and children before the court to determine whether or not they were involved in idol worshiping or were worshipers of the one true God of Israel, it they were idol worshipers they had to get a divorce and separate from them forever. “And the children of the captivity did so. And Ezra the priest, with certain chief of the fathers, after the house of their fathers, and all of them by their names, were separated, and sat down in the first day of the tenth month to examine the matter. And they made an end with all the men that had taken strange wives by the first day of the first month. And among the sons of the priests there were found that had taken strange wives: namely, of the sons of Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and his brethren; Maaseiah, and Eliezer, and Jarib, and Gedaliah. And they gave their hands that they would put away their wives; and being guilty, they offered a ram of the flock for their trespass. All these had taken strange wives: and some of them had wives by whom they had children.” - Ezra 10:16-19,44.

To put away means to divorce, we have here an account of the only time in the Bible that God condoned divorce. Regardless of whether or not we are a child of God, God hates divorce, those who are married must make every effort to remain married.
However, in some cases God will allow husband and wife to separate, Jesus Said, “But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.” - Matthew 5:32.

It is important that Christians, marry Christians, it will save them a lot of unnecessary suffering between them and their kids. However, what is done is done, once married, every effort must be made to stay in the marriage until death, with one exception, if the unbeliever leaves. “And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband: But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife. But to the rest speak I, not the Lord: If any brother hath a wife that believeth not, and she be pleased to dwell with him, let him not put her away. And the woman which hath an husband that believeth not, and if he be pleased to dwell with her, let her not leave him. For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy. But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases: but God hath called us to peace.” - 1 Corinthians 7:10-15.
God knows our hearts, of course, we are going to sin again, of course, we are going to have times when we do not do things God's way, but that is what God's grace is for. When we do everything humanly possible to live God's way He grace will carry us the rest of the way. “For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” - 2 Corinthians 12:8,9.
Today's Psalm: 18:44 - “As soon as they hear of me, they shall obey me: the strangers shall submit themselves unto me.
Today's Proverb: 19:23 - “The fear of the LORD tendeth to life: and he that hath it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil.
Today's Prayer: God, I know that the difficulties I face are not to punish me, but to discipline me, strengthen me, and get me to live Your way and not mine. I truly want to live in Your will, I know I am going to mess up, but as long as I keep doing my part with a willing heart I know You will do Your part. Lead me and guide me, help me to let go of any hindrances that keep me in bondage to my difficulties. Give me Your power to endure and to separate myself from whatever is causing me unnecessary suffering. In Jesus' name. Amen.
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