by Jerry Vines

This content is part of a series.

Revival in Our Time (1 of 5)
Ezra 1-2
Jerry Vines

I'm going to ask you to take an imaginary journey with me, back in time to approximately 500 years before the Lord Jesus Christ was born. That means we are going back in time about 2500 years to a land known as the land of Babylon. It is modern Iraq, but in those days it was Babylon. Babylon, the fountainhead of all idolatry. Babylon, the origination of every germ of evil teaching. Babylon, where the children of God-the Jews-were in the land of captivity.

There are six books in the Old Testament which have to do with the Jews being in captivity in Babylon. Three of those books are in the historical section of your Bible-Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther. There are also three books in your Bible in the prophetical section, the last three books of the Old Testament--Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. Those six books have to do with this period of time known as the captivity and the return of the Jews back into the land of promise after they had been in a time of captivity.

God allowed Babylon to conquer His people because they were given over to idolatry. His people had decided that they wanted to follow other gods-idols of the day. So, God always gives us what we insist upon. He allowed them to go back to Babylon to the very center of idolatry. There God cured them of idolatry forever. From that point on, the children of Israel-God's people-were monotheistic. They believed in only one Lord God.

God has a way of giving us what we insist upon having. In the Old Testament there is a statement where it says ''God gave them their desires, but sent leanness to their soul''. I think what we are experiencing in American life today is certainly an illustration of this truth. America has decided that we want paganism. We do not want religious faith. So God has given America what America wants. We are experiencing the fruits of our paganism. We are now living in a society where there are no absolutes. There are no moral va ...

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