Written by: Tim Wood
For the gracious hand of his God was on him. This was because Ezra had determined to study and obey the Law of the Lord and to teach those decrees and regulations to the people of Israel. (Ezra 7:9-10)
God’s hand was on Ezra because he devoted himself to the Scriptures (the Law of the Lord). But what does it mean to be devoted to the Word of God? It means that the Bible becomes the standard for our lives. The norms of the Scriptures are the norms that we live by, and we dedicate ourselves to finding out what those norms are. We commit ourselves to study the Bible and to fellowship with like-minded people. We look for people who can help us and teach us how to incorporate the Scriptures into our lives. We learn its principles and memorize its words. We pray over it and dialogue with its Author. Like Jeremiah, we "devour" its words. And like Ezra, we are determined to obey the Word and to teach its decrees. When we are determined to obey the word, our lives become a living word for others to see. The best commentary on the Bible is a person who puts it into practice. Howard Hendricks said this about the Bible: The Bible was not written to satisfy your curiosity, but to make you conform to Christ’s image. Not to make you a smarter sinner, but to make you like the Savior. Not to fill your head with a collection of biblical facts, but to transform your life. Dusty Bibles lead to dirty lives. In fact, you are either in the Word and the Word is conforming you to the image of Jesus Christ, or you are in the world and the world is squeezing you into its mold.”
As one Pastor put it - The Bible…Read it through. Work it out. Pass it on! That’s the Ezra way of approaching God’s word. May the gracious hand of God be on us as we devote ourselves to His Word!