From the book of Ezra we read,
- “Now after these things, in the reign of Artaxerxes king of Persia, there went up Ezra son of Seraiah, son of Azariah, son of Hilkiah” (Ezra 7:1 – NASB)
As is most evident in the day in which you and I live, there is what seems to be a plethora of people around us, some true some fictional, that the world lifts up to us as examples for us to order our lives after. Hollywood, for years now, has conveyed to us through the medium of radio, movies, and television, people that they are of the mind serve the public as examples for how a person might want to be. Some are good examples and some are bad. It is worth noting that as our culture has changed the depiction of these characters has also changed. Whereas at one time the example was someone who was clearly upright and virtuous, Hollywood’s perception of the example has greatly changed as our culture has spiraled downward. Seems the example has become less virtuous, less upright, more likely to be depicted as more to the dark side then the right side.
Sports is another medium in our culture that has become a source for examples. Athletes have become icons that young people follow to the extreme point of idolization. They tend to, as they say, worship the ground they walk on. Obviously when such a strong attachment is made to these modern day gladiators they become examples, and what they say and do has a huge influence of the lives of multiple people.
I want to think that we Christians are not duped by or taken in by this cultural manipulation that the world throws our way. I want to think that when it comes to examples for our lives our source of information comes via God’s Word not via Hollywood or the latest seasonal sport.
The other day as I was reading, it just so happened that the writer brought to my attention Ezra, the Old Testament figure that actually has a book named after him. Ah yes . . . Ezra . . . a fine example of a man! How do I know this?
- “Ezra . . . a scribe skilled in the law of Moses” (Ezra 7:6 – NASB)
This “scribe” was “skilled in” the Word of God. It says that the king of Persia,
- “. . . granted him (Ezra) all he requested because the hand of the LORD his God was upon him” (Ezra 7:6 – NASB)
Why was “the hand of the LORD his God upon him?”
- “For Ezra had set his heart to study the law of the LORD, and to practice it, and to teach His statutes and ordinances in Israel.” (Ezra 7:10 – NASB)
What a fine example of a man for the man of God! For the woman of God! For the young man or young woman of God! For any child of any family, be they Christian or not. Better for sure than any example Hollywood can ever generate, lest they make a biblically true account of this great saint’s life.
Ezra . . . a fine example of a man! You know . . . I wonder . . . do you think Fathead has a wall poster of Ezra? Have to check into that.
Have a good day brethren . . . and as you go about the day maybe you can take some time to get to know Ezra, a man that can serve as a most wonderful example for you to follow after.