1 And all the people gathered themselves together as one man into the street that [was] before the water gate; and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses, which the LORD had commanded to Israel.
2 And Ezra the priest brought the law before the congregation both of men and women, and all that could hear with understanding, upon the first day of the seventh month.
3 And he read therein before the street that [was] before the water gate from the morning until midday, before the men and the women, and those that could understand; and the ears of all the people [were attentive] unto the book of the law.
4 And Ezra the scribe stood upon a pulpit of wood, which they had made for the purpose; and beside him stood Mattithiah, and Shema, and Anaiah, and Urijah, and Hilkiah, and Maaseiah, on his right hand; and on his left hand, Pedaiah, and Mishael, and Malchiah, and Hashum, and Hashbadana, Zechariah, [and] Meshullam.
5 And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was above all the people;) and when he opened it, all the people stood up:
6 And Ezra blessed the LORD, the great God. And all the people answered, Amen, Amen, with lifting up their hands: and they bowed their heads, and worshipped the LORD with [their] faces to the ground.
7 Also Jeshua, and Bani, and Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodijah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites, caused the people to understand the law: and the people [stood] in their place.
8 So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused [them] to understand the reading.
The Biblical Structure of a Church in a Revival
The people are in one mind and one accord.
“all the people gathered themselves together as one” v1 (See Acts 2:1)
The congregation desires to hear and respects the word of God
“and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses” v
“the ears of all the people [were attentive] unto the book of the law.” v3
The congregation respected the ministry and built a pulpit for the minister
“And Ezra the scribe stood upon a pulpit of wood, which they had made for the purpose” verse 4
“Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was above all the people;) and when he opened it, all the people stood up:” v5
The congregation was not ashamed to openly worship God
And all the people answered, Amen, Amen, with lifting up their hands: and they bowed their heads, and worshipped the LORD with [their] faces to the ground. v6
The preaching of the word of God greatly affected the congregation.
caused the people to understand the law: and the people [stood] in their place.
The “people stood in their place” means that they were reproved, corrected, and instructed by the word of God. This brings fruit into our lives. The men learned their place in God, being a good husband, loving his wife as Christ loved the Church. The women learned to be good wives, submissive to their own husbands, and the children learned to be obedient to their parents and much happiness is brought into our lives from the word of God.
It also speaks of the people receiving the burden of God, teaching, and wisdom. The ministry of the Word of God puts this into the congregation’s heart. When the people go out into the world to “teach all nations” (Mark 16:14-16) they stand in the man of God’s place and gave out to the world what was given to them. “Freely you have received, freely give” Matthew 10:7
8 Beware lest any man spoil you through
1. Philosophy and vain deceit,
2. after the tradition of men,
3. after the rudiments of the world,
And not after Christ.
9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.
10 And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:
Since the Word is God (John 1:1) and the Word was made flesh (John 1:14) then Jesus is the Word, and since we are complete in Him (Col 2:10) means we are complete in the Word. By studying the Word alone, without philosophy and vain deceit, without tradition of men, and without rudiments of the world, we are molded into complete Christians.
v We are clean through the Word
John 15:3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
v The scriptures make us wise unto Salvation
In the “last days” perilous times shall come:
2 Timothy 3:1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
6 For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,
7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
The Word of God is the answer to these problems:
2 Timothy 3:13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.
14 But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;
2 Timothy 3:15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
v All Scripture in the Bible is inspired of God, and is to be used for doctrine, and instruction.
16 All scripture [is] given by inspiration of God, and [is] profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
v The scriptures perfect us unto all good works
17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.
2 Peter 1:16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
The Transfiguration experienced verified to the apostles (Peter, James, and John) the Authority and Infallibility of the Word of God.
17 For he received from God the Father honor and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.
19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
Consider that it is usually the case in our world that people have “revelation” from God but it does not verify the authority of the Word. Remember that God always stays in His Word. (See Isaiah 35:1 and Matt 11:1-6)
v The scripture is not to privately interpreted (man made understanding and reasoning)
2 Peter 1:20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
v The scriptures were written by the Holy Ghost through men.
21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake [as they were] moved by the Holy Ghost.
Supernatural signs and miracles happen to many different types of people, but the Bible is clear that we should not follow signs and wonders, but obey the Word of God, and signs and wonders will follow us. It is common for people to mistake a miracle for a move of God or an experience with God as Salvation. Clearly the scripture teaches that a sign or wonder occurring does not always means that God is involved.
Deuteronomy 13:1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,
2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spoke unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;
3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.
Matthew 7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not; for it was founded upon a rock.
26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
The whole chapter of Psalm 119 is about the Word of God.
Psa 119:9 Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.
Psa 119:11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
Psa 119:18 Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.
Psa 119:34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.
Psa 119:89 Forever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.
Psa 119:103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
Psa 119:104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.
Psa 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.
Psa 119:130 The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.
Psa 119:140 Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.
Revelation 22:18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.