The people of Israel, including the Levites, are to bring their contributions of grain, new wine and olive oil to the storerooms, where the articles for the sanctuary and for the ministering priests, the gatekeeper and the musicians are also kept. “We will not neglect the house of our God.” Nehemiah 10:39
Buildings are often neglected, especially when they get older. Little things start to go wrong and they are ignored. Large problems occur and people move out. They don’t want to deal with the problems and so they abandon the place and neglect its needed care.
This can happen because one believes it is someone else’s responsibility or they don’t want to take the time or resources to maintain the building. They ignore the problems, until it is too late and the building is condemned.
As the Israelites were rebuilding the temple and Jerusalem, they took an oath to not neglect the house of God, the temple. They took an oath to bring in all the required tithes and offerings throughout the year.
While there is a physical church building today, there is still a house of God that is even greater than the building. Each and every believer is a temple of God and all believers together make up the house of God. While people often take care of the physical church building, many will neglect the house of God in themselves or in others.
They don’t take time to study His word, or pray, or be filled with His Holy Spirit and presence. They reject what God has to tell them in search for personal pleasure. They choose to not take time to have a relationship with God.
The people had to bring in: the grain, this is God’s word to feed a believer; the wine, this is the new covenant of salvation brought about by Jesus; and the olive oil, this is the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer.
As a believer, you must have these things in your life. Your body is now a temple of God and must be cared for. Having these things in your life, will ensure that all is taken care of in your spiritual body, the temple of God.
Don’t neglect your spiritual body, or it will fall into ruin and bring about a spiritual death. God wants you to have life to the fullest. Accept what He has for you and don’t neglect it.
I pray today that you will know the salvation Jesus provides; that you will be filled with God’s Holy Spirit; that you will have a hunger to be fed with God’s word; and that you will not neglect God’s temple in your life or in others.
Then the peoples around them set out to discourage the people of Judah and make them afraid to go on building. Ezra 4:4
Doing something great will often have some great challenges to make happen. Beyond just the challenges of knowing how to do something great is the opposition that can occur.
Men and woman who are striving to do something great are often told that they are crazy and should not try to do it. The reason they are told that they are crazy and shouldn’t do it is for several reasons. Sometimes it is so different that others think it cannot really be done, and one should not waste it time trying. Other times it is out of fear of it actually working and getting done.
The Israelites had been put into captivity in Persia, yet, were given direct permission from the king of Persia to go to Jerusalem and rebuild the temple to God. As they had begun to do the work, the people around them worked hard to stop them. They tried to discourage them from finishing the work that they had started to do.
Fear of Christians accomplishing something is still around to this day. The world is an enemy to Jesus and does not want Him or His followers to ever accomplish anything. The thing that believers do is following and obeying God. They are working to build God’s kingdom here on this earth.
Any time a believer is doing God’s will, Satan and this world will rise up in opposition. He does not want the believer to be successful, because it means it will be his downfall. The world does not want it, because they can feel God’s judgement upon their lives in seeing the lives of believers.
God has or will call you to do something for His kingdom. It may be building a new temple or it may just be a simple thing of telling someone about Jesus. Either way it is doing something for Him.
As soon as you begin to do what God has asked of you, the world will begin to attempt to discourage you and stop you. They may say it is a waste of time and that it won’t work with just words. Or they may be physically violent against you.
Do not be surprised. There was opposition to the Israelites and against Jesus. You will receive opposition. Stay true to God and do what He has given you to do. Don’t be discouraged, God is with you.
I pray today that you will know the mission God has for you; that you will not be discouraged; that you will stay true to God; that God will give you strength to do His work; and that you be His witness.
He said to the Levites, who instructed all Israel and who had been consecrated to the LORD: “Put the sacred ark in the temple that Solomon son of David king of Israel built. It is not to be carried about on your shoulders. Now serve the LORD your God and his people Israel.” 2 Chronicles 35:3
Putting things off is something that is easy to do. One can get distracted by many different things, keeping him from doing one thing specific. Many also put off things that they really do not like to do.
It is easy to think that one can do it at a later time. However, as one puts off something, other important things come up. As things keep coming up, more and more gets put to the side, causing one to get further behind.
Josiah, king of Judah, had the temple restored and put the Levites back in charge of leading the people in worship to God. Once everything was in place he told the Levites that it was time to serve God. They were not to put off serving God any longer as they had been doing for years.
Many people put off serving God. Some do it out of fear, not knowing what God will want them to do. Some do it because they love this world more. Others because they are too busy to stop and serve God. The reasons and excuses are many.
Every believer is to follow God with all of his heart, soul, mind and strength. This means they are to serve God with everything in them, all the time.
This is not some request for in the future. Nor is it even a request. It is a command. Today is the day to begin to serve the Lord. Now is the time to serve the Lord.
God has a mission for you to do each and every day. At the very minimum it is to be a witness of who Jesus is to someone every day. This is something that can happen over and over throughout the day. Being a witness of Jesus is the greatest way a person can serve God. It is building His kingdom more and more.
While you may have things to do in this world, your number one priority is to serve God first and foremost. Do not put it off any longer, but serve Him today while you can.
I pray today that God will show you ways to serve Him; that God will give you strength to serve Him; that God’s kingdom will grow through your service; and that you will find joy in serving God daily.
Some time later Joash decided to restore the temple of the LORD. 2 Chronicles 24:4
Over time things will wear down or break down. They lose their original shine and glory. The paint will crack and peel off from cars and houses. Holes and leaks will begin to occur.
Often these things occur because of neglect. No one takes the time to take care of the object enough to keep it in pristine condition. Little things start to show, but is often ignored, because it is just a ‘little thing’ and not an emergency.
When mold begins to show up in a house it starts with just a little spot. If ignored, it will continue to grow until it takes over the entire house and it has to be demolished.
There are people who love to restore old things. Many old cars, that are broken down and rusted out, are taken from a field and restored back to its original condition. It takes a lot of work and time, but in the end is worth it to some people.
Joash had become king of Judah at a very young age. When he had become king, the temple had been ignored for years and had broken down. He chose to restore the temple and restore worship of God in the land.
When a person chooses to follow Jesus, God begins a restoration project. The person is being made brand new to what he was meant to be. Restored to what man was before the fall in the Garden of Eden.
While walking through life, some believers back down from the restoration and allow neglect to come. They neglect spending time with God, serving and worshipping Him. They go back to the world in areas of their life.
This is a time for restoration, to get back with God.
There may be some areas in your life that you have neglected in your walk with God. You have allowed the ways and thoughts of this world to creep in and begin to destroy your heart and life.
Take a moment to give those areas to God. Allow God to begin a restoration process to renew you to the new creation you have been created to be. God knows exactly how to restore your life to one that is wholly devoted to Him.
As long as you have breath to breathe, you have time to restore immediately. Don’t put off restoration until it is too late.
I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will allow God to make changes in your life; that God will restore your relationship with Him; and that your whole life will be a testimony of God’s love and power.
He overlaid the ceiling beams, doorframes, walls and doors of the temple with gold, and he carved cherubim on the walls. 2 Chronicles 3:7
When a person is building a house, he wants it to look nice. He will strive to build it with the best materials he can afford. Once the house is built and the walls are up, he will work to paint it with the right colors. Covering the bare walls with the best colors is his goal.
Each person has a different opinion as to what is the best colors to make the house, but the goal is the same. They want the house to stand out as great. They want it to be comfortable and pleasing to the eye.
As Solomon was having the temple of God built, he had everything overlaid with gold. Gold was to be seen everywhere on everything. During his time, gold was the most precious material available. He also spared no expense in how the temple was built. It was an extremely costly expense to overlay everything with gold, yet it was done to honor God with the temple.
God had moved His dwelling place from the physical temple to the hearts of men and women. He now dwells in the lives of people, rather than in a building.
Each person who believes in Jesus is now a temple unto God. They are a work in progress from the moment they chose to follow Jesus.
As a person, they are not very beautiful to look at. People are filled with sin and faults. In order to change, they must put on the holiness and righteousness of Jesus. This is the new gold for God’s new temple.
Putting on His righteousness is costly. It will cost the believer his desires and life. All now belong to God and are to be holy unto God.
You are a temple unto God, a place where God can dwell. The righteousness of Jesus cleanses you and makes you holy. It can bring honor to God in a dark and sinful world.
The process of putting on the gold righteousness will be costly to you. You will have to give up some old habits and thoughts. Yet, in the end it is a witness to the world of who you serve and where your heart is. The world will see what you value and where your focus is.
Are you covered in God’s gold today?
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as Savior; that you will be covered by Christ’s righteousness; that your life will be filled with God’s Spirit; and that the world will see Jesus in you.
The priests then brought the ark of the LORD’s covenant to its place in the inner sanctuary of the temple, the Most Holy Place, and put it beneath the wings of the cherubim. 1 Kings 8:6
Shortly after becoming king of Israel, Solomon chose to begin building the temple to God that his father, David, had wanted to build, but was not allowed to. After a lot of work of building the building, the priests brought the ark of the covenant into the building and placed it in the Most Holy Place.
At the time the ark of the covenant represented God’s presence and His agreement with the Israelites. It was an agreement that if the people followed His commands, He would be their God and take care of them. In it there was a copy of the ten commandments, a jar of manna, and the budding branch. This represented what the people had to do, God’s provision and God’s leadership.
This ark was placed in the Most Holy Place. It was the place that God would directly dwell when among the people. It was behind a huge curtain and was a place of no sin and only the high priest was allowed in once a year. It was God’s place.
A thousand years later, Jesus had died upon the cross, ripping the curtain in two and open and making a way for every person to go into the Most Holy Place where God is. The new location for God’s place to dwell was no longer in a temple, but in the heart of a person.
When one seeks forgiveness and believes in Jesus, his heart is made pure and holy–the Most Holy Place. It becomes the dwelling place of God. There is now a covenant–an agreement–between God and the person placed in the heart. There is also a sign of the provision for forgiveness and eternal life placed in the heart.
Believe in the work that Jesus did for you to remove your sins and give you eternal life. Accept His work in your life and become a believer. Do not allow the covenant of sin of this world to take a place in your heart.
As a believer, you now have God’s covenant placed in your heart. Your heart has become the Most Holy Place–the dwelling place of God. God is with you and will not leave you.
Believe in Jesus and allow God’s presence to be in your life daily.
I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will allow God to rule in your life; that you will allow God’s presence to fill your life; and that your heart will be the Most Holy Place unto God.