Ezra 7:8-20 “And he came to Jerusalem in the fifth month, which was in the seventh year of the king. For upon the first day of the first month began he to go up from Babylon, and on the first day of the fifth month came he to Jerusalem, according to the good hand of his God upon him. For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments. Now this is the copy of the letter that the king Artaxerxes gave unto Ezra the priest, the scribe, even a scribe of the words of the commandments of the Lord, and of his statutes to Israel. Artaxerxes, king of kings, unto Ezra the priest, a scribe of the law of the God of heaven, perfect peace, and at such a time. I make a decree, that all they of the people of Israel, and of his priests and Levites, in my realm, which are minded of their own freewill to go up to Jerusalem, go with thee. Forasmuch as thou art sent of the king, and of his seven counsellors, to inquire concerning Judah and Jerusalem, according to the law of thy God which is in thine hand; And to carry the silver and gold, which the king and his counsellors have freely offered unto the God of Israel, whose habitation is in Jerusalem, And all the silver and gold that thou canst find in all the province of Babylon, with the freewill offering of the people, and of the priests, offering willingly for the house of their God which is in Jerusalem: That thou mayest buy speedily with this money bullocks, rams, lambs, with their meat offerings and their drink offerings, and offer them upon the altar of the house of your God which is in Jerusalem. And whatsoever shall seem good to thee, and to thy brethren, to do with the rest of the silver and the gold, that do after the will of your God. The vessels also that are given thee for the service of the house of thy God, those deliver thou before the God of Jerusalem. And whatsoever more shall be needful for the house of thy God, which thou shalt have occasion to bestow, bestow it out of the king’s treasure house.”
Text Ezra 7:10 “For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.”
The temple had been rebuilt and dedicated unto the Lord, but many things were needed if it was to become a perpetual place of worship! The priests would need vessels to work with and animals to sacrifice. God moved upon the heart of the King of Persia to provide these things because of Ezra, “a ready scribe” (vs.6). Why would God use Ezra; “For Ezra had prepared his heart?” Ezra prepared his heart to examine God’s Word, “to seek the law.” The word “seek” means to tread, frequent, pursue, or search. Ezra was a man that spent time in the Word of God! Speaking to Timothy, Paul said, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (II Timothy 2:15). Ezra prepared his heart to execute God’s Word, “and to do it.” James said, “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves” (James 1:22). Ezra permitted the Word of God to become the standard by which he lived his life. Ezra prepared his heart to educate others in the Word of God, “and to teach.” Writing to Timothy, Paul said, “the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also” (II Timothy 2:2). How sad to be like those in Hebrews 5:12, “For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again.” The Word of God is to be more than a reservoir; it is a resource to be shared with others. Ezra prepared his heart with the Word of God; have you?