July 7: Psalm 7; Nehemiah 8-10

Song for Today: 
Give Me Jesus
Joy of the Lord

O let the evil of the wicked come to an end, but establish the righteous;
For the righteous God tries the hearts and minds.
My shield is with God,
Who saves the upright in heart.
God is a righteous judge,
And a God who has indignation every day.
If a man does not repent, He will sharpen His sword;
He has bent His bow and made it ready.
•••
I will give thanks to the Lord according to His righteousness
And will sing praise to the name of the Lord Most High.
from Psalm 7

all the people gathered as one man at the square which was in front of the Water Gate, and they asked Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses which the Lord had given to Israel. Then Ezra the priest brought the law before the assembly of men, women and all who could listen with understanding, on the first day of the seventh month. He read from it before the square which was in front of the Water Gate from early morning until midday, in the presence of men and women, those who could understand; and all the people were attentive to the book of the law.
•••
They read from the book, from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading.
•••
“This day is holy to the Lord your God; do not mourn or weep.” For all the people were weeping when they heard the words of the law. Then he said to them, “Go, eat of the fat, drink of the sweet, and send portions to him who has nothing prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” So the Levites calmed all the people, saying, “Be still, for the day is holy; do not be grieved.”
•••
The entire assembly of those who had returned from the captivity made booths and lived in them. The sons of Israel had indeed not done so from the days of Joshua the son of Nun to that day. And there was great rejoicing. He read from the book of the law of God daily, from the first day to the last day. And they celebrated the feast seven days, and on the eighth day there was a solemn assembly according to the ordinance.
from Nehemiah 8

on the twenty-fourth day of this month the sons of Israel assembled with fasting, in sackcloth and with dirt upon them. The descendants of Israel separated themselves from all foreigners, and stood and confessed their sins and the iniquities of their fathers. While they stood in their place, they read from the book of the law of the Lord their God for a fourth of the day; and for another fourth they confessed and worshiped the Lord their God.
•••
Arise, bless the Lord your God forever and ever!
O may Your glorious name be blessed
And exalted above all blessing and praise!
“You alone are the Lord.
You have made the heavens,
The heaven of heavens with all their host,
The earth and all that is on it,
The seas and all that is in them.
You give life to all of them
And the heavenly host bows down before You.
•••
You are a God of forgiveness,
Gracious and compassionate,
Slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness;
And You did not forsake them.
•••
You are just in all that has come upon us;
For You have dealt faithfully, but we have acted wickedly.
“For our kings, our leaders, our priests and our fathers have not kept Your law
Or paid attention to Your commandments and Your admonitions with which You have admonished them.
“But they, in their own kingdom,
With Your great goodness which You gave them,
With the broad and rich land which You set before them,
Did not serve You or turn from their evil deeds.
“Behold, we are slaves today,
And as to the land which You gave to our fathers to eat of its fruit and its bounty,
Behold, we are slaves in it.
“Its abundant produce is for the kings
Whom You have set over us because of our sins;
They also rule over our bodies
And over our cattle as they please,
So we are in great distress.
“Now because of all this
We are making an agreement in writing;
And on the sealed document are the names of our leaders, our Levites and our priests.”
from Nehemiah 9

Now on the sealed document were the names of: Nehemiah the governor,..
•••
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;
•••
we will not neglect the house of our God.
from Nehemiah 10

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