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Rebuilding Our Hearts and Our Church Home. Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way. First Thoughts A quote from David Wells: God rests too inconsequentially upon the church. His truth is too distant His grace is too ordinary His judgment is too benign His Gospel is too easy

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slide2

Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

  • First Thoughts
  • A quote from David Wells:
    • God rests too inconsequentially upon the church.
    • His truth is too distant
    • His grace is too ordinary
    • His judgment is too benign
    • His Gospel is too easy
    • His Christ is too common
slide3

Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

  • The truth? We marginalize God:
    • We “domesticate” Him to serve our purposes
  • The situation in Nehemiah 9:
    • They are finished with the Feast of Booths and are ready to take two more steps
    • Chapter 9 is step 1, chapter 10 is step 2
    • They discover the nature of true repentance is a balance of grief and gladness
slide4

Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

  • A review of where we are in Nehemiah:
  • Chapters 1 – 7 focus on reconstruction
  • Chapters 8 – 13 focus on reinstruction
    • Chapter 8 – Rediscovery of God’s Word
    • Chapter 9 – Rediscovery of God’s Grace
    • Chapter 10 – Recommitmentto follow God’s Word
slide5

Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

        • True Repentance is prompted by the Word and work of God
  • The world makes too much of man and too little of God, and so continues lost on a path to ruin
    • God’s Word must do the work of convicting minds and hearts
    • We will never know the truth without it!
  • The people of Israel understood how they had failed God from the reading of the law by Ezra (Nehemiah 8)
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Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

        • True Repentance is characterized by genuine sorrow – v 1
  • The nation’s first response was fasting, not fun
  • When they fasted it hurt!
  • The purpose was to recognize the depth of their sin
  • Isaiah 6:1-5 reveals the God we sin against
  • 2 Questions:
  • How do I show how serious I am about my sins?
  • What do I call repentance?
slide7

Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

        • True Repentance faces the ugly truth of sin head on – v 2
  • They confessed their sins past and present
  • They identified with sins they did not commit. Why?
    • They acknowledged these actions were sinful
    • They recognized their potential to do the same
  • The nation’s prayer of sinfulness (lostness) – vv 5-37
    • Note it’s specific nature
    • They considered how their sin affected/offended a holy God
slide8

Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

  • True Repentance acknowledges the unworthiness sin produces
  • This comes through “between the lines”
  • Repentance recognizes I am undeserving . . .
  • . . . and yet God is willing to extend grace to me
  • These truths should rid us of the thoughts . . .
    • . . . that we “deserve” something from Him
    • . . . that we are “OK” apart from His grace
  • The truth: we are lost without Him in our lives!
slide9

Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

        • True Repentance throws itself upon the Amazing grace of God – vv 5-37
  • It acknowledges the true character and nature of God
  • The nation is told to “stand up and praise Him” – v5
  • The nation is told He is sovereign – vv 7-8
  • The nation is told of His care for them – vv 9-10
  • The nation is told of His provision – vv 11-12
  • The nation is told of His Word to them – vv 13-15
  • The nation is told of His faithfulness in contrast to their sinfulness (lostness) – vv 16-37
slide10

Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

  • Last Thoughts
  • The repeated truth in Nehemiah 9?
  • We (Israel) have messed up and You have always graciously forgiven when we repent. Grace can . . .
    • Meet a woman caught in adultery and . . .
    • Meet a man who has wasted his life and . . .
    • Meet a woman at a well with a dark past and . . .
    • Meet a condemned man and . . .
    • Meet you and I today and . . .
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Nehemiah Rebuilding God’s Way

  • Last Thoughts
  • The final word?
  • True repentance walks a new path by the grace of God through salvation in Jesus Christ
    • We need Jesus Christ as Savior because we are lost, not because we are bad
    • We need Him as Spiritual Guide (the Holy Spirit) so we can grow in understanding & obedience of Him and the Word