Before Tik Tok was a social media phenom, Tick Tock was the way old clocks sounded. Mechanical, wind up clocks sounded a TICK and then after a moment between sounded a TOCK. If you do not know what that is like, you can find listen to the sound on YouTube.
Ezra, tucked away in the Old Testament between 2 Chronicles and Nehemiah, by analogy reminds us what our lives are like when we live between the tick and the tock. We always live between what was and will be, but sometimes that is even more acute, more compelling, on everybody’s mind. Such is our time. Ezra tells the story of God’s people in the tick of Exile and waiting for the tock of Restoration.
God enables you to live with a sense of his presence and guidance between the tick and the tock.
God’s Own People May Find Themselves in Exile
What God had started with Abraham, continued with Moses, and led through various kings ended with an exile. God’s own people were carried away for 70 years from Jerusalem to Iraq. They lost their accustomed lives and had to live an alien life in an unexpected place. Some deserved it; many did not.
We have lived through an unexpected exile in our times. In January 2020 it would have taken a prophet to predict what would happen. It is a global macrohistory and an individual microhistory. It is the story of a planet and of every individual shut behind closed doors. We have all seen the pictures of old folks holding their hands up to windows wanting to touch a child and nurses holding the hands of folks dying alone.
God May Intervene in a Sudden Strange Way to Release His People from Exile (Ezra 1)
Like lightning on a moonless, cloudless night, God used Cyrus, the Iranian, to free his people from exile and help ...
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Dr. Joel C. Gregory is Director of the Kyle Lake Center for Effective Preaching, holder of the George W. Truett Endowed Chair of Preaching and Evangelism at Baylor's Truett Seminary, and the founder of Joel Gregory Ministries.