Module 17: Rebuilding of a Nation
Beyond the end was a new beginning as the scattered people were bidden to return. But the time was tough and the opposition great. How could a dead nation be re-born? 1 and 2 Chronicles creates the foundation, restoring the identity of this broken people. Ezra and Nehemiah reflect the rebuilding of the temple, Jerusalem and the nation. Exceptional times call for exceptional leaders! Not only Ezra and Nehemiah, with the prophetic support of Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi, but Esther too. The study of Kings is a prerequisite for this module.
Be inspired by the hidden working of God as your careful study unfolds the story of this fascinating book and shows the courage of those in very dangerous situations.
1 and 2 Chronicles
The first chapters of these books are difficult for many to work through as lists of names are not very inspiring, but for those returned from exile, knowing their identity was paramount. But it was not just their personal identity, but the identity of the whole nation that is being addressed in these carefully constructed historical books. As you understand through your inductive study the chosen emphases of the author, you will share in the restoring power of the Word of God.
Ezra and Nehemiah
In Ezra and Nehemiah the many promises of the pre-exilic prophets began to be fulfilled. As you study these books, and understand the issues these great leaders faced, you will be challenged and inspired, as well as thrilled with the faithfulness of God. You will discover too, that these books are important to understand for the three final Minor Prophets.
Haggai with his two short chapters brings a powerful challenge to the people to rise and rebuild the Temple in hard and difficult times. So we too find ourselves challenged to obey the word of the Lord when it is not convenient or when it is hard. Haggai’s message lives on.
Zechariah, the contemporary of Haggai, supports the call to rise up and build the temple with eight visions in one evening. But then he goes beyond with insights far into his future. This book will challenge your interpretation skills but will be rich with application.
And so you have come to the final Prophet and the final book of the Old Testament, and sadly you will find a dispirited and complaining people. But the challenges of the Lord through the prophet are clear, and as you will discover, each challenge is pertinent to many contemporary situations you are likely to find yourself in.