Highly recommended… The public reading and exposition of Scripture!

Public Reading of Scripture

This morning I read about a healthy practice that Ezra, the priest, established in Israel following the exile… The public reading of Scripture accompanied by it’s exposition/explanation! It’s still a healthy practice – an uplifting/edifying practice – a practice I’d like to recommend! Most churches today could profit by doing it as a regular part of their worship. Apostle Paul urged Timothy, as a young minister, to practice it the church he was responsible for… “Devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching!” (1 Timothy 4:13)

Here’s the account of Ezra’s practice from the Bible… (As you read it picture what was going on)…

“Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly, both men and women and all who could understand what they heard… And he read from it… from early morning until midday, in the presence of the men and the women and those who could understand. And the ears of all the people were attentive to the Book of the Law. And Ezra the scribe stood on a wooden platform that they had made for the purpose… And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people… and as he opened it all the people stood. And Ezra blessed the Lord, the great God, and all the people answered, “Amen, Amen,” lifting up their hands. And they bowed their heads and worshiped the Lord.. They read from the book, from the Law of God, clearly, and they gave the sense, so that the people understood the reading. And all the people went their way to eat and drink and to send portions and to make great rejoicing, because they had understood the words that were declared to them.” (from Nehemiah 8:1-12)

So what’s so powerful about the public reading and exposition (explanation and application) of Scripture? Paul knew! This is what he said…

“ALL SCRIPTURE is breathed out by God (i.e. it is “inspired”) and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man (or woman, youth or child) of God MAY BE COMPLETE, EQUIPPED FOR EVERY GOOD WORK!” (2 Timothy 3:16–17)

Hey, if the public reading and exposition (explanation and application) of Scripture was good enough for Ezra in Old Testament times and Paul and Timothy in New Testament times… It’s good enough for me! And it should be highly recommended for modern church leaders today!

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