Top Music Videos
Rebuilding the Altar
Jeshua . . . joined his fellow priests . . . in rebuilding the altar of the God of Israel. They wanted to sacrifice burnt offerings on it, as instructed in the Law of Moses (v.2).
Each New Year promises the opportunity to start afresh—the prospect of a new beginning. The Israelites had been a rebellious and disobedient people. After 70 years of exile, they were allowed to return home to Judea. They were also given the necessary help and resources to rebuild their temple (Ezra 1:1). They could start afresh with God. But howdo you start afresh with Him?
Their first step was not to rebuild the temple. Instead, they chose to rebuild the altar (vv.2-3). The altar was the place where God met with His people (exodus 29:42- 43). It was impossible for sinful people to have fellowship with the Holy God. So burnt offerings had to be sacrificed to God as atonement for sins: “the Lord will accept [the animal’s] death in your place to purify you, making you right with Him” (Leviticus 1:3).
These burnt offerings pointed to God’s perfect once-for-all sacrifice for sins—Jesus “the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world” (John 1:29; Hebrews 9:12). The altar was the place of repentance and renewal, cleansing and acceptance by God. His people rebuilt the altar at the onset of their work, for they first needed to get right with God!
Three times we’re told that they sacrificed burnt offerings “as instructed in the Law of Moses” (Ezra 3:2), “as prescribed by the Lord” (v.5). Their new beginning was characterized and evidenced by their obedience to God’s Word.
God graciously offers you the opportunity of a fresh start with Him. But you must return from “Babylon” and come to the cross of Calvary—the altar where Jesus was sacrificed to atone for your sins. That’s the starting point of new beginnings.
How is your altar broken? To begin afresh with God, receive forgiveness of sin and acceptance from Him (1 John 1:9).
- Fulfilled - Why is it important to view Old Testament laws through the lens of Jesus’ fulfillment of them?...read more
- Red Houses - What has God given you—time, finances, ability—that you can use to help someone in need today?...read more
- Tongues Afire - When have you recently endured the wound of another person’s words?...read more
- True Fellowship - What comes to your mind when you hear the word fellowship?...read more
- After 35 - What does it mean for you to rely on God in all things?...read more
- The Failure Wall - In what ways do you need to be prepared for encounters with spiritual enemies?...read more
- Worship 101 - What can you praise God for today?...read more
- Distance - What expectations do you have of fellow church members when it comes to meeting your needs?...read more
- Sarcasm and Sincerity - Do your words provide a safe environment for others?...read more
- Empty Spaces - What’s taking up space in your heart?...read more
- Showing the Way - How prepared are you to share your faith with others?...read more
- New Address? - Where’s the line between worrying and simply pondering a decision?...read more
- Real Stewardship - How are you using your gifts and talents to bring God to others?...read more
- Korah’s Redemption - How has God revealed His redeeming ways to you?...read more
- Stuff We Need - How can you give lavishly to God and others today?...read more
- Rising Above - What difficulties have caused you to experience distress recently?...read more