Journey to Jerusalem Day 28
Tuesday, March 16 2 Chron 36:22-23
22 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and also put it in writing: 23 “Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, ‘The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and he has charged me to build him a house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever is among you of all his people, may the Lord his God be with him. Let him go up.’”
The end of the book of 2 Chronicles leaves us with hope. Our gracious Father had initiated the restoration of his temple in Jerusalem and of his people from their disobedience and unfaithfulness. The people had turned away from the Lord like never before. They were exceedingly unfaithful; they polluted the house of the Lord (v. 14). This was likely a period in their history that they would rather forget.
Don’t we all have periods in our life like that, periods that we would rather just forget? Things we are ashamed of and would rather not have anyone else know about?
But now, as we stand on the other side, we are able to look back at those times and realize that although we may have been exceedingly unfaithful, God—even in our darkest times—is faithful, and just, and compassionate.
When we come to our senses and return to him, he welcomes us with open arms. In the moments of our rebellion, he persistently pursues us, not wanting anyone to perish. He takes the initiative of restoration. He covers us in the righteousness of his Son, Jesus Christ, and remembers not our sin, our unfaithfulness, our shame. He redeems us from the pit of our lives and restores us and heals us. In him, we are a new creation.
Let us live our lives for the Lord, rejoicing in who he is and all that he has done for us. Let us join him in building his house, the Church, to his honor and glory. Let us spur one another on in the hope that we have in Christ.
Almighty God, thank you for being the foundation of my life. You are the God of restoration and compassion. Come, restore my soul.