Confession and Commitment
Nehemiah 9:31 says, “But in your great mercy you did not put an end to them or abandon them, for you are a gracious and merciful God.” The setting for this verse is the city of Jerusalem several hundred years before the birth of Christ. The Israelites had gathered together to confess their sins and recommit themselves to following the Lord. Their religious leaders—the Levites—led them in recounting God’s long record of forgiveness and grace to inspire the people to worship and follow Him wholeheartedly. I love this chapter because it reminds me of my own need for revival and recommitment.
The chapter starts by noting how serious the people were about their confession and commitment. Nehemiah 9:3 tells us, “They stood where they were and read from the Book of the Law of the Lord their God for a quarter of the day, and spent another quarter in confession and in worshiping the Lord their God.” And the Levites led them in worship with these words, noting God’s supremacy: “Stand up and praise the Lord your God, who is from everlasting to everlasting. Blessed be your glorious name, and may it be exalted above all blessing and praise. You alone are the Lord. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you.” (Nehemiah 9:5b-6)
Throughout their history the Israelites had experienced God’s discipline and faithfulness: “In all that has happened to us, you have remained righteous; you have acted faithfully, while we acted wickedly.” (Nehemiah 9:33). It was God’s kindness, despite their disobedience, that led them to repentance and recommitment. If you find yourself drifting away from God through disobedience or neglect may you, like the Israelites of Nehemiah’s day, take time to recount God’s faithfulness and kindness, and then recommit yourself to following Him wholeheartedly. He will not abandon you, for He is a gracious and merciful God.
Having begun as a guest speaker in 2005, Dan was appointed Interim Pastor in 2008 and has been serving Maple Root Baptist ever since. As a small group leader and Chaplin for the Connecticut Tigers, Dan has a heart for the lost and the God that saves them.