August 6
Ezra 1:1-3, 3:6-13

Rebuilding the Temple

In the first year that King Cyrus became Emperor of Persia, he encouraged the Jews still living in Babylon to go back to Jerusalem and help rebuild the Temple.

The Jews who went back were very excited about rebuilding the Temple. They gave money to pay the stonemasons who cut blocks of stone and laid them in place, and also for the carpenters who did the woodwork.

They had dug deep trenches and laid a strong foundation. However, when some of the older priests saw the foundation of the new Temple, they were really disappointed because they remembered how much bigger the first Temple had been. But there were others who shouted and sang for joy because the foundation was the start of their return to worship.

Why are foundations so important?

Have you ever watched concrete being poured into a deep trench and thought, what a waste to dig a deep hole only to fill it again. Even though a foundation cannot be seen once the building is built, it has a very important purpose because the whole building rests on it. Without a foundation the building would crumble into a heap of rubble.

When our lives go through troubled times, we also need a solid foundation to hold us up and keep us strong. If our faith rests on Jesus, the Rock, we have a sure foundation. Those who do not know what they believe are on shaky ground. When trouble comes, they don’t know what to believe or what to do. They suddenly feel weak and helpless—and their lives fall apart (Matthew 7:26-27). It is scary not to have someone mighty to depend on in times of trouble. Rely completely on Jesus. He is the Rock that will keep you standing firm in times of trouble.

Verse for today

For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 3:11