Daily Word

Regret the past or Rejoice in the future | Ezra 3:12-13 (NASB)

12 Yet many of the priests and Levites and heads of fathers’ households, the old men who had seen the first temple, wept with a loud voice when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, while many shouted aloud for joy, 13 so that the people could not distinguish the sound of the shout of joy from the sound of the weeping of the people, for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the sound was heard far away.~

Ezra 3:12-13 (NASB)

Stark contrast

The foundation for the temple was finally laid. It was cause for great rejoicing. It symbolized the Jews had returned to the promised land, that they could perform sacrifice to God to atone for their sins. But the older generation, who had seen the glory of the original temple, were exceedingly sad. JFB commentary suggests, “Perhaps, however, the chief cause of grief was that the second temple would be destitute of those things which formed the great and distinguishing glory of the first; namely, the ark, the shekinah [glory of God’s presence]”.

Hope in the future

Clarke’s commentary points to Haggai 2:1-9 where, “The prophet Haggai comforted them on this occasion by assuring them that the glory of this latter house should exceed that of the former, because the Lord (Jesus Christ) was to come to this temple, and fill it with his glory.” We’ll be branching off to Haggai in a week or so. For now, here’s a taste (v9): “‘The latter glory of this house will be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts, ‘and in this place I will give peace,’ declares the LORD of hosts.”

Regret the past or Rejoice in the future?

What will we do when we face disappointment? As I look back a few years on what amazing things God did, I lament that we’re not still in that same place. We also miss the place itself and people. I have a choice. Will I be sad because that time is gone, never to return or, will I rejoice that I got to experience it and more, look forward to what God will do next? In the words of a great philosopher, “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened” (Dr. Seuss)

Don’t cry, Smile Dr. Seuss

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