Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | January 4, 2016

“Worship the Lord with reverence And rejoice with trembling.”

Today’s devotion comes from Nehemiah chapter 8.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Nehemiah+8&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“1 And all the people gathered as one man at the square which was in front of the Water Gate, and they asked Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses which the Lord had given to Israel.  2 Then Ezra the priest brought the law before the assembly of men, women and all who could listen with understanding, on the first day of the seventh month.  3 He read from it before the square which was in front of the Water Gate from early morning until midday, in the presence of men and women, those who could understand;  and all the people were attentive to the book of the law.  4 Ezra the scribe stood at a wooden podium which they had made for the purpose.  And beside him stood Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah, and Maaseiah on his right hand;  and Pedaiah, Mishael, Malchijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah and Meshullam on his left hand.  5 Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people for he was standing above all the people;  and when he opened it, all the people stood up.  6 Then Ezra blessed the Lord the great God.  And all the people answered, “Amen, Amen!” while lifting up their hands;  then they bowed low and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground.  7 Also Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, the Levites, explained the law to the people while the people remained in their place.  8 They read from the book, from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading.”

Then Nehemiah, who was the governor, and Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, “This day is holy to the Lord your God;  do not mourn or weep.”  For all the people were weeping when they heard the words of the law.  10 Then he said to them, “Go, eat of the fat, drink of the sweet, and send portions to him who has nothing prepared;  for this day is holy to our Lord.  Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”  11 So the Levites calmed all the people, saying, “Be still, for the day is holy;  do not be grieved.”  12 All the people went away to eat, to drink, to send portions and to celebrate a great festival, because they understood the words which had been made known to them.”  Nehemiah 8:1-12.

———————

Consider how the people worshpped the LORD with reverence:  “all the people were attentive to the book of the law” even though the book was read from early morning until midday – verse 3;  “and when he opened it (the book of the law), all the people stood up”  – verse 5;  after Ezra blessed God, “all the people answered, “Amen, Amen!” while lifting up their hands” – verse 6;  and then “they bowed low and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground.” – verse 6.

But, there was also a place for rejoicing in worship.  “Then Nehemiah, who was the governor, and Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, “This day is holy to the Lord your God;  do not mourn or weep.’  Verse 9.   Then, Nehemiah said to them.  “Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”  Verse 10.  “All the people went away to eat, to drink, to send portions and to celebrate a great festival, because they understood the words which had been made known to them.”  Verse 12.

Worship the Lord with reverence
And rejoice with trembling.”  Psalm 2:11.

Other doctrine tries to do the opposite.  Other doctrine tries to be not be reverent, because it has the primary goal of trying to please visitors who want to dress and act casually.  Other doctrine is all about pleasing man.

But, Reformed Doctrine worships the LORD with reverence.  Reformed Doctrine is all about pleasing God.  Reformed Doctrine worships God only as He wants to be worshipped only as set forth in Scripture. 

Other doctrine rejoices because it feels good about itself, being pumped up by the music.

But, Reformed Doctrine rejoices because it feels good about God, understanding God’s Word.   


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