The Battle for the Blessing (Week 5) Message Notes 2.4.24

“The Battle for the Blessing”

Ezra & Nehemiah Series Week #5

February 4th 2024

Welcome to our first series of 2024!

We have called this series “The Battle for the Blessing”

· We must contend every day for the fruit of God’s blessings

Since this book centers on the rebuilding of the Temple, we should take a short hyperlink journey to get some backstory about the Temple itself…

The Temple of Solomon, known as the “First Temple”..

· Built in about 950 B.C. and destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar in 586 B.C.

It was built of Bronze, Gold, silver, precious jewels and the finest cedar from Lebanon…


If you are doing the math, you might ask why there was no temple for over 450 years once the Jews returned to the promised land…

· It’s a little complicated…

King David was ruler of the united kingdoms of Israel and Judah…

· The tabernacle and Ark of the Covenant moved through several cities for centuries.

· Read 1 Chronicles 15 and 16

As king of Israel, David had built for himself a great palace…

· 1 Chronicles 17:1

At first his good friend Nathan agrees, but then…

· 1 Chronicles 17:3-5

Nathan continues recounting his prophetic vision…

· 1 Chronicles 17:7-11

Why did God shut David down here?

· 1 Chronicles 22:7-8

Solomon builds the Temple, and it is the holiest site is Israel for nearly 400 years!

· Until Nebuchadnezzar burns the city and plunders the temple!


So that gives us background on the temple, now jump forward to Ezra…

· Ezra 1:5

This is a celebration of restoration of what was left of Solomons Temple!

· Ezra 2:1-70

If we believe what Paul told Timothy is true, it’s up to us to find the treasure in every verse!

· 2 Timothy 3:16-17

This is a recounting of the first wave of exiles to return from Babylon…

· Ezra 2:1-2

It goes on to list the number of men from the various tribes who returned

The Priests who returned…

· Ezra 2:36-39

The Levites who returned…

· Ezra 2:40

The Singers

· Ezra 2:41

The Sons of the Gatekeepers…

· Ezra 2:42

The Temple Servants…

· Ezra 2:43-54

The Sons of Solomons servants…

· Ezra 2:55-58

The caravan arrives in Jerusalem to find the crumbled remains of Solomons Temple…

· Ezra 2:68-69

o This act by the leaders of households was meant to show their commitment to restoring the Temple, and with it, the holiness of Israel.

The caravan disperses and head to their ancestral cities…

· Ezra 2:70

The end of the chapter shows the restored nation, orderly, structured and ready for its main purpose; The worship of Yahweh, the God of Israel.

The listing of all of the returning exiles is done for some very important reasons:

1. To show that this is a verified group of the children and grandchildren of the ones who were held responsible for the defiling and ultimately the destruction of the Temple.

2. Their ancestors were responsible for the safekeeping of the Temple

3. To document the return of the lineage of David to Jerusalem.

Here is our takeaway for today:

· God is faithful…

Faithful to keep His Covenant to His chosen people.

· You are God’s chosen people

o Exodus 12:47-49

o Romans 11:16-18

Faithful to discipline His chosen people.

· Hebrews 12:7-8

· Hebrews 12:11

Faithful to restore His chosen people.

· 1 Peter 5:6-10

Here’s your application:

If you want to reap the blessing of being considered among God’s chosen, you need to understand:

1. We have a part to play in living up to being a chosen follower of Christ

2. We should understand and expect God’s discipline when we stray from our calling

3. We can praise Him in the middle of the storms of life, because we know that restoration is coming, and thankfully it’s not dependent on us, but God’s grace!

If we understand this, we can look forward to the ultimate restoration:

· 1 Corinthians 15:6-11

· Romans 6:23

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