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Summary: The "Hand of God" was with Ezra because: 1. He Studied God’s Word 2. He observed God’s Word 3. He Taught God’s Word

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Title: How to Experience God

Text: Ezra 7 (esp. vv. 6-10)

Author: Larry C. Brincefield

1. Since the dawn of history…

• Mankind has sought a relationship with God…

• Adam and Eve longed to walk thru the Garden of Eden with their Creator in the cool of the day…

• And throughout the long years of history people have sought a relationship with God…

• So called “holy men” have sat on the mountaintop…

• To try to draw closer to God…

• Once on television, I say a so-called “holy man” who decided to roll on the ground all the way to a mountaintop many, many miles away…

• This journey lasted months…

• He rolled and rolled and rolled…

• Until he completed his journey at the mountaintop…

• Just so he could “experience God”…

2. People have tried all kinds of things…

• All in an effort to draw closer to God…

• I found a book on amazon.com entitled:

• “The Heart of the Mind: How to Experience God Without Belief” by Jane katra and Russell Tarq.

• Here are some things that people have said about that book:

• As a very secular University of Chicago-trained economist… hearing the word "God" is like a red-flag. Uh oh... I just can’t take seriously "God," that Big Bearded Daddy in the Sky who’s going to love you or punish you or whatever, depending on whose "Bible" you want to consult. …it was a relief and a delight to read a book …without… having to believe in "god"

• Here’s another one: It expands on the incredible, ground breaking work started by the late, great L. Ron Hubbard. This book should be called DIANETICS 2. Quite simply one of the most profound reading experiences I have ever had. I know the authors are students of Hubbard, and they carry on his tradition with exquisite accuracy. They are not weird lunatics, they are gods, as are we. Praise them. Praise me. Praise you. We are not flakes, we just get it. (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1577311566/qid=1121864566/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl14/103-5730329-1592669?v=glance&s=books&n=507846)

3. Well, this morning, I want to let you know that I have found the secret!!!

• I have found the way for you to experience God…

• I have found the way for you to have a relationship with God…

• And you don’t have to climb to the top of a mountain and meditate for 30 years…

• You don’t have to roll on the ground for 1,000 miles…

• You don’t have to unleash the power of your mind and embrace yourself as a god…

• You don’t have to live on a diet of bread and water and poke yourself with needles to experience God…

• And to be honest, I didn’t come up with it myself…

• It is there for everyone to find the truth for themselves…

• And we will find the way to experience God it in the words of our text this morning.

Read Text: Ezra 7:6-10;

1. First, let me give you some background

A. Ezra chapters 1 through 6 detail the first return to Jerusalem from captivity…

• And the rebuilding of the Temple

• In Ezra chapters 7 through 10…

• It details a 2nd return to Jerusalem…

• The 1st return was led by Zerubbabel, a civic leader…

• And the 2nd return was led by Ezra, a spiritual leader.


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