Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Ezra 5 - The Power of the One Speaking God's Word

Ezra 5:1-2 (ESV)

Now the prophets, Haggai and Zechariah the son of Iddo, prophesied to the Jews who were in Judah and Jerusalem, in the name of the God of Israel who was over them. Then Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel and Jeshua the son of Jozadak arose and began to rebuild the house of God that is in Jerusalem, and the prophets of God were with them, supporting them.

The work of God in Jerusalem was prompted and supported by the prophet/preacher, who may very well be the most powerful individual on earth. Those proclaiming the Word of the Lord are not powerful because any power resides in them, but because there is power in God’s Word. There is power in God’s Word proclaimed by God’s people. Ephesians 6:17 calls God’s Word the “Sword of the Spirit.” Hebrews 4:12 says, “The word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” There is nothing more powerful than the Word of God, thus the one proclaiming God’s Word could be considered the most powerful individual on earth.

Ephesians 5:26 likens God’s Word to water which cleanses and makes holy. What other literature, teaching, or proclamation can do that? God’s Word spoken by God’s prophet/preacher/proclaimer has the power to transform lives in ways that no other teaching can. God’s Word changes hearts. God’s Word empowers faith. God’s Word enables obedience. God’s Word transforms lives.

How can this be? It is only words, yet Psalm 119:105 likens the Word of God to light. It says, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” When the prophets speak God’s Word they are speaking in the realm of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit who inspired the Word of God also empowers the Word of God. He gives light to our path, and he never leads contrary to the Word he inspired. He convicts, empowers, and equips those who hear his Word. Prophets speak in the realm of the Spirit.

They also speak in light of eternity. Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (Lk 21:33). David wrote, “Forever, O LORD, your word is firmly fixed in the heavens” (Ps 119:89). God’s Word is eternal. Isaiah wrote that God’s Word, “shall accomplish that which [God] purpose[s], and shall succeed in the thing for which [God] sent it” (Is 55:11). God’s Word is an eternal word which accomplishes God’s purposes by the power of God’s Spirit. It is a Word that changes lives, motivates God’s people, and equips them for God’s purposes.

Need we any other reason to be faithfully in God’s Word? Need we any other reason to proclaim God’s Word faithfully. Those proclaiming the Word of God are likely the most powerful individuals on the face of this earth. God’s prophets spoke God’s Word, and the people of God got on with the work of God. Listen to the Word of the Lord.

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