Our church buildings are dedicated to God, but sometimes as sinful humans we claim ownership. I had just joined a new church and since I knew people tend to sit in the same pews, each Sunday I would sit in a different part of church to meet people. One Sunday a family was miffed because I was siting in “their” pew. After that I tended to sit in the balcony because that didn’t upset anyone.
The Dedication Ceremony for the Wall
Nehemiah and Ezra, the priest, organized the dedication of the rebuilt wall with two choirs. All started on the west side of Jerusalem. Ezra accompanied the choir that went south and counterclockwise on top of the walls to the temple. Nehemiah joined the choir that went north and clockwise on top of the walls. These choirs met at the Temple where there were sacrifices to God and worship.
Why not keep it simple and just meet at the temple? I think there are several reasons. First, no one person or group could claim ownership of the wall. It was a group effort and as they traveled along the wall this would have been apparent.
Secondly, as they began building Tobiah had mocked them by saying; “That stone wall would collapse if even a fox walked along the top of it!” Now there were hundreds of people marching along the wall.
This was a symbolic march around the wall. Each person had had a place to serve and build but they knew only God had made this possible. Now they were giving it back in songs of praise to the Lord to glorify what He done.
Dedicate Yourself to the Lord
Where has God built something in your life? Are you claiming this as your own or are you willing to dedicate it back to God? God loves our celebration of praise and thanks. Psalm 69: 30 Then I will praise God’s name with singing, and I will honor him with thanksgiving. 31 For this will please the Lord more than sacrificing cattle, more than presenting a bull with its horns and hooves.
To hear more about being dedicated to God, listen here:
[1-] Nehemiah 4:3, Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188.