“Please notice that to be renewed spiritually includes a renewed commitment to the “things of God.” The things of God are all those things associated with His worship and service. Your commitment to God is no stronger than your commitment to the things of God. Your commitment to God cannot be strengthened without the result of this renewal being reflected in your commitment to the things through which we relate to God and He relates to us.”
By Nevin Bass
They clave to their brethren, their nobles, and entered into a curse, and into an oath, to walk in God’s law, which was given by Moses the servant of God, and to observe and do all the commandment of the LORD our Lord, and his judgments and his statutes (Neh.. 10:29).
ONE OF THE UNIVERSAL features of true revival is a renewed interest and commitment to the old paths. Revival begins with God’s people, not with new converts. New converts are a result of real, biblical revival. When God’s people are inspired and stirred to the point of revival, it is a stirring to return to the old paths and to the foundation of the faith. This was true in Nehemiah’s day, and it is also true today.
With renewed interest must come renewed commitment. Commitment is the fuel that feeds the flame of revival. Commitment that causes one to renew covenant with God is the essence of any true revival. And there is a fellowship of renewal that is shared by those who seek a real move of God in their lives. Renewal of our covenant with God includes a renewal of our commitment to the things of God.
Not all are willing and able to be a part of the fellowship of renewal, this circle of revival. There is one particular characteristic that will universally prevent one from participating and being a part of this fellowship. And thus, this characteristic is what stifles revival on a personal basis and can indeed prevent revival in a group. Are you wondering what this characteristic is? Then keep reading.
And the rest of the people, the priests, the Levites, the porters, the singers, the Nethinims, and all they that had separated themselves from the people of the lands unto the law of God, their wives, their sons, and their daughters, every one having knowledge, and having understanding (Neh. 10:28).
Chapter nine of Nehemiah highlighted the role of leadership in the renewal of the ancient covenant with God. A memorial of this recommitment was created—a document pledging obedience to the law of Moses. It was written, rolled up, and sealed by the princes, Levites, and priests (Neh. 9:38). Chapter ten begins with a listing of the names of leaders who pledged their faithfulness to the Lord in this way.
Now those that sealed were, Nehemiah… (Neh. 10:1).
And the list goes on for twenty-seven verses. These are the leaders who felt in their hearts that the nation needed a change in priorities, in lifestyle, and in commitment. We are not told that all of Israel’s leaders felt this way, but a significant number obviously did.
It is both unrealistic and unscriptural to assume that the entire congregation was willing to recommit themselves to the ancient covenant. Just as there were leaders who were not willing, I am sure there were lay people as well, as in any congregation there will always be those who refuse to change in any appreciable way other than in word. I ‘he move of God cannot be held hostage by such as refuse to apply the Word to their own lives and their own situations.