As we reach the end of our Nehemiah study, we find ourselves full circle back to the beginning.
Neh 8:2 So Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly, both men and women and all who could understand what they heard, on the first day of the seventh month.
Neh 8:3 And he read from it facing the square before the Water Gate 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.
No matter what we accomplish in our homes, we must be sure that we have built on a solid foundation. We must build on Torah, the first five books of the Bible. We must learn it ourselves and we must teach it to our family. All of Scripture is important, but we must remember that Scripture is built like a house. Torah is the foundation upon which everything is built. Without a solid understanding of Torah, we cannot hope to understand the prophets or the New Testament. How can I say that? Because the Scriptures following the Torah are primarily either quotes or explanations of the Torah itself. Torah is not a collection of stuffy laws like a pile of dusty old bricks. It is the very words and breath of YHVH. When we build our homes on Torah, it is a refreshing breeze that brings peace and contentment to our families.
This is the very essence of Torah Family Living. Torah shows us the character of YHVH. It demonstrates how to worship YHVH, our king. It gives us examples of how to honor our fellow man.
Without the lifegiving force of Torah in our homes and families, we can have magazine quality homes with no life in them. We can have well behaved children that are really whited sepulchers, dead inside. Each day is an opportunity to bring the life giving power of Torah into our homes. How will you use that opportunity? Torah itself tells us how in Deuteronomy 6.
Deu 6:4 “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one.
Deu 6:5 You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
Deu 6:6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.
Deu 6:7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
Deu 6:8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.
Deu 6:9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
- Begin by teaching your children the wonderful awesomeness of the God we serve. He is the Elohim who loves and fights for His people. He is a God to be feared and obeyed, not like other gods who demand human sacrifice in the mouth of the volcano, but because He knows what is best for us.
- Demonstrate with your own life that serving the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob requires our whole selves. He does not want us for a fair weather friend.
- Teach your children about Torah at every opportunity. Teach them on Shabbat. Teach them during your school day.
- Read Torah to your children. If they are younger, read a simplified version like ‘My First Torah.’
- Speak of the Creator and His creation when you take walks, do chores, etc. A sentence here and a sentence there will plant wonderful seeds.
- Tuck your children in at night with thoughts of Torah and YHVH. You might use some music like ‘The Bedtime Sh’ma.’
- You may also want to welcome the day with music as your children get out of bed.
- When faced with the little decisions throughout the day, ask yourself and your children, “What does Torah say about this? What would YHVH have us do?”
- Post verses around your home. Put Deuteronomy 6:4-9 on a card on your doorframe. Surround yourself with life giving Torah.
Don’t worry about doing all these things at once. I haven’t implemented all of them either. Following YHVH is a journey!
The most important thing we can learn from Nehemiah is to keep Torah in the center of everything we do. As we raise our children, clean our homes, and manage our finances, we must consistently dwell on the life giving principles found in Torah. This is where our success lies. This is when our mundane jobs truly matter. This is when we are able to bring beauty out of the ordinary.
May YHVH bless our homes as we seek to make Him the center of our families.