In the initial part of our reading this Saturday it can be somewhat easy to bypass a pretty important parallel of what is to come in the New Testament. Nehemiah wants to jump in and get the wall dedicated, but is waiting upon permission from King Artaxerxes. We are not really told where Nehemiah is at this time, but upon his return he faces the fact that the people of Israel have once again defied the covenant they made.
“Why is the house of God neglected?” Nehemiah asks in Chapter 13 verses 10 and 11.
Nehemiah sees that the temple of God is being used outside of its purposes and that the people are not honoring the Sabbath. Does this kind of sound familiar to you?
As we enter into the New Testament we will read about a very similar situation in which Jesus turns tables in the temple because people are defiling the house of God and not keeping a day of rest.
From our passage we read that this is not the first time Judah operates in these practices, it has been something that the people have been doing over and over again. From their ancestors to this time, yet Nehemiah acts like a boss and calls them out! He shuts things down and closes things up.
I believe we must do that in our lives as well! We have to do an honest examination of what covenants we still hold in regard. In all sincerity, inward examinations of self can be hard and kind of ugly, but in the end the result will be riddance of the things that take up unnecessary room in the temple of our hearts.
The Bible tells us that Christ dwells in our hearts; He takes up residence in the temple of our heart. We should not neglect proper upkeep therein where Christ dwells. I do not want to neglect the work that God is continually doing in my life, I will get no where and will miss out on the fulfillment that Christ has promised me in my life!
Father, in this moment, would you come in and examine the temple of our hearts? May you place warning signs or red flags in the areas that need upkeep. We desire to do Your will, Lord. You are it for us, examine us from the inside out. In Your might name, Amen.