And 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. Ezra the scribe stood at a wooden podium which they had made for the purpose… Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people for he was standing above all the people; and when he opened it, all the people stood up. Then Ezra blessed the LORD the great God. And all the people answered, "Amen, Amen!" while lifting up their hands; then they bowed low and worshiped the LORD with their faces to the ground… the Levites, explained the law to the people while the people remained in their place. They read from the book, from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading. Nehemiah 8:1-8
Wow! I love this. I noticed the responses to the Word of God. Responses we should have.
The asked for it to be read! They wanted to hear the words.
They listened as it was read and explained to them...for hours...standing!
They blessed the Lord.
They stood up to hear, they bowed low and worshiped. What reverence for God’s word!
Later in the chapter…
They wept and were grieved when they heard the words. Why? Maybe they realized what they were missing. Maybe they were gripped by the weight of their sin.
They celebrated because they understood the words!
On the second day of reading, they learned about the Feast of Booths which had been commanded but they had not been obeying since the days of Joshua. They set about obeying.
There followed great rejoicing.
Oh, to have this great respect for the Word of God. To value it for what it is… God’s word! Oh, to be grieved by our sin! Oh, to have this quick obedience. Oh, to enjoy this great rejoicing!
How blessed are those who observe His testimonies, Who seek Him with all their heart.
More than anything I would like to encourage you in your walk with God!