A Nation Repents

Nehemiah 9:1-38

Today, the people of Israel gathered together with fasting, separating themselves from all strangers. The gathering was to confess their sins and those  of their fathers in a show of genuine national repentance.

The day started with the reading of the book of the law of the Lord, and the other parts of the day the spent confessing their sins and worshiping God. With the Levitical leaders going through Israel‘s history to show how God had dealt with the fathers – starting from Abraham, to the miracles God did in Egypt, and in the desert with the giving of the law.

They also recounted how the fathers were unfaithful, making for themselves gods, causing great provocation. Despite these, God had been merciful to them, feeding them, and leading them, and preserving them in the wilderness. God also gave them lands to possess, giving them strong cities, but after eating to their fill, they became disobedient to God, and he delivered them into the hands of their enemies. However, when they cried out to Him, he sent them saviors to deliver them from their enemies.

Israel’s cycle of disobedience and deliverance from trouble went on and on until their exile to Babylon. Now that they had returned, they sought God’s face for mercy. They confessed their sins and those of their fathers, and they made a covenant to obey God’s laws.

Just like the Israelites, we all have a journey with God. Most times it is not a smooth run. Do we always come back to God in repentance and a willingness to obey him from our hearts. Make a commitment to God today, He is willing to help you to obey him.

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