"For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the Torah of Adonai (the Law of the Lord) and to do it, and to teach its statutes and ordinances in Israel" (Ezra 7:10).
Ezra prepared His heart to seek God's Word, to do it and to teach it. Notice what this Scripture doesn't say. It doesn't say: "Ezra prepared his heart to be the leader of a great revival." Or, "Ezra prepared his heart to be well-known and respected enough for kings and people in places of authority to know and call on him for great and noble tasks."
Nope. Only, "Ezra prepared his heart to seek God's Word, to do it and to teach it."
Observe what else it doesn't say:
- Ezra prepared his heart to seek God's gifts or treasures on earth
- Ezra prepared his heart to seek God's blessings
- Ezra prepared his heart to seek God's favor
Nope. Again, "Ezra prepared his heart to seek God's Word, to do it and to teach it."
The amazing thing about it is that Ezra did in fact lead a great revival (see Nehemiah 8-10) and he was called on by a king to take up a great and noble task (Ezra 7:11-28). He was also entrusted with the treasures of God's Temple and received favor and blessing (Ezra 7), but it wasn't because he was seeking any of these things.
As I read this Scripture, I am reminded of Yeshua's words "…seek His kingdom, and these things shall be added to you" (Luke 12:31).
Ezra, as a member of the kohanim (priests) was not even seeking to be established as a priest in Israel. Remember, at this time there was no Temple. He didn't set his heart on the future of what he could become, he simply did in the present what he knew to do. He sought first God's kingdom and all these things were added to him.
Why is it important for us to seek to learn God's Word and to do and teach it? It's important because:
- When we seek His Word, we are seeking Him (John 1:1)
- His Word is exalted even above His name (Psalm 138:2)
- There is great reward in keeping His Word (Psalm 19:10-12)
- It is truth (John 17:17)
- His Word is our comfort in affliction and keeps us alive (Psalm 119:50)
- It keeps our way pure (Psalm 119:9)
- When we seek Him and His Kingdom, everything else we need will be added to us (Luke 12:31)
- Those who do His Word are blessed (Psalm 1:1-3; Luke 11:28)
- Those who do His Word are like those who build their house upon the Rock and they will not be shaken (Luke 6:46-48)
Once we learn His Word, He'll empower us to do His Word. Once we do His Word, we'll be able to teach it, and by the very act of teaching His Word we'll learn more about His Word and how to do it. This is a cycle worth repeating!
I must ask myself then, what things am I seeking? Am I seeking to be known or approved by others? Am I seeking to do something great for God or to have an abundance of gifts, blessing and favor? Am I seeking earthly treasures instead of heavenly ones? If I answer honestly, the answer is often yes. But it doesn't have to be. In this season more than ever, in order to have a sure hope, we must seek His Word. In it is life and all that we need.
Lord, I want to prepare my heart to seek your Word. You said, “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also" (Luke 12:34). Please help me, by Your Spirit, to clear out of the way anything that is taking first place in my life and heart above Your Word. Make learning and doing your Word my highest goal so that I may be truly blessed and be able to teach others about You.
Take inventory of your heart today and ask God for a heart to seek Him and His Word, to do it and to teach it. You will be blessed and be a blessing.