“Desperate Times, Desperate Measures”
Passage: Ezra 1:1–10:44, Nehemiah 1:1–13:31
Sunday Sermon: July 30th, 2017
The only way the Reformation could possibly not still matter would be if beauty, goodness, truth, joy, and human flourishing no longer mattered. We have been made to enjoy God, but without the great truths …that display him as glorious and enjoyable, we shall not do so. Seeing less of him, we shall be lesser and sadder. Seeing more of him, we shall be fuller and happier. And on that note, we should leave the last words to John Calvin… “It will not suffice simply to hold that there is One whom all ought to honor and adore, unless we are also persuaded that he is the fountain of every good, and that we must seek nothing elsewhere than in him. . . . For until men recognize that they owe everything to God, that they are nourished by his fatherly care, that he is the Author of their every good, that they should seek nothing beyond him— they will never yield him willing service. Nay, unless they establish their complete happiness in him, they will never give themselves truly and sincerely to him.
Michael Reeves, Tim Chester [James 1:17; Jeremiah 9:23-24; 1 Peter 1:8-9]
- God stirs according to His plan: kings, empires, people, Ezra 1:1-11; Nehemiah 9:10; Proverbs 21;1; Daniel 4:34-37; Ephesians 1:11; 3:10.
- God stirs leaders, Ezra 1:5; 2:1-70; 3:3; 5:5; 9:8-10; Acts 8.
- He stirs to holiness, worship, prayer. There are some things that will never happen unless we pray, Daniel 9:23; 10:12; Ezra 9:5 – 10:1; Nehemiah 1:1-11; 1 John 1:9.
- There will be vigorous opposition, inside and outside; therefore, we must pray and take action, Ezra 4:9; 4:1-24; Nehemiah 4:1-23; 6:1-19.
- He is always faithful, even when we are faithless. He will hold us fast, Ezra 9:8; Ezra 9:1 – 10:44; 2 Timothy 2:11-12.
- God stirs with the Word, Ezra 3:2; 5:1; 7:10, 25; Nehemiah 8.
- God stirs to Gospel wakefulness: repentance that leads to joy, Nehemiah 8:9-10; 9:1-38; Psalm 51:12-13; 2 Corinthians 7:9-11.
- After reformation, how does He hold us?