THE MOST CRITICAL STEP IN SEPARATION

July 21, 2021

THE MOST CRITICAL STEP IN SEPARATION

Now the rest of the people, the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, the temple servants and all those who had separated themselves from the peoples of the lands to the law of God, their wives, their sons and their daughters, all those who had knowledge and understanding, are joining with their kinsmen, their nobles, and are taking on themselves a curse and an oath to walk in God’s law, which was given through Moses, God’s servant, and to keep and to observe all the commandments of God our Lord, and His ordinances and His statutes. (Nehemiah 10:28-29)

 

The most significant moment of the nationwide revival that occurred in Nehemiah’s day, was the signing of a covenant. Beginning with the leaders, the whole nation signed a document of repentance and a commitment to follow the Lord.

It is fascinating how these signer’s are described:

All those who had separated themselves from the peoples of the lands to the law of God. (Nehemiah 10:28)

These repentant followers didn’t merely separate from something; they also separated themselves to something and Someone. They turned from the world and its ideas and turned to God and His prescribed laws.

POSITIVE SPIRITUAL REPLACEMENT

There is a critical principle in spiritual life. It could be called the law of “Positive Spiritual Replacement.” When we walk away in repentance from our sin and worldliness, we must replace this with a corresponding turn to Christ and His truth. If our only action is to turn away and we do not begin to experience the joy and intimacy with Christ that we are designed for, we will find ourselves soon turning back to the “leeks and onions of Egypt.”

Look for yourself, and you will find in the long run only hatred, loneliness, despair, rage, ruin, and decay. But look for Christ and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in.” (C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity)

Are you turning away from the world and its attractions? That is good, but are you replacing that with a full return to Christ? With a daily dose of His goodness? With the joy of His purpose for your life? With the fullness of His Spirit in and through you? Experiencing Him is the purpose of our repentance and the joy of life.

Father, thank You that Christianity is not a mere regulation to turn from sin. It is the joy of turning to You—Your life, Your joy, Your purpose that You have for us. Help us pursue you. Give us the wisdom to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness,” knowing that all we long for will be added with this pursuit.




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