“And their brothers who did the work of the house, 822: and Adaiah the son of Jeroham, son of Pelaliah, son of Amzi, son of Zechariah, son of Pashur, son of Malchiah.”
So that’s the verse we’re going to reflect on today that’s going to lead us to pray. Why would I pick that verse? “Their brothers who did the work of the house, 822,” and it lists some names that I can hardly pronounce. How does this verse lead us to pray? And you think about different places like this in the Bible where you see lists of names, but as I read this list in Nehemiah chapter 11, I am reminded in a wonderfully encouraging way for these kinds of records in God’s word of the history of God’s people down to the individual names of God’s people and what they did.
You are part of a great picture that extends over centuries. Your life matters in the kingdom of God. May we labor to the end that others hear the good news and are brought into this kingdom.
Not just names, but numbers like 822, not 821, not 823. 822, like every one matters. And in this, I just want you to think about your name. It is in a list of many names, a long line of names in the history of God’s people, but you count. Your name matters. God knows you and you matter to him. So feel the, I hope, personal encouragement in this. You’re not just in like a sea of multitudes of God’s people. You are his child. He knows you by name. He loves you, so feel that personally and then step back and realize the wonder.
Not only does your name matter, but your name matters in a long line of names that matter. So don’t find insignificance in this. Find significance in this, that you’re part of a great picture that spans centuries with names like Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and Moses and David and Isaiah and Jeremiah, Nehemiah and Paul and Peter and John. Your name, along with all kinds of names of people who have gone before, and not just from scripture but from Christian history who are making the glory of God known in the time and place in which we’ve been put, in the time and place you have been put.
You’ve been put where you are as a part of this long line of people to faithfully follow God for his glory. So live in that today, live in that today and then, and then when you think about others, live to see others’ names included in that line. Live to see the names of friends, family members, coworkers, neighbors, and the people among the nations, like individual names, like the danger, when we pray for unreached people groups like the Awan in Pakistan, so the Awan people, 5.3 million of them.
I say 5.3 million but God knows the exact number. God knows if it’s 5,384,621, and he knows every single one because every single one of them, those 5+ million people, every single one of them matters. That’s individual people created by God whom he loves, who he wants to know his grace. You and I have been put in this time and place to make his grace known to individual people like that. So God, we praise you for your love for us individually, for your personal love for us. We praise you for calling our name. We praise you for saving David Platt from his sins and each person who’s listening to this, like substitute their name from there sins.
You know them, you love them. All Glory be to your name for knowing our names and for creating our lives to count, and so may they count we pray. May they count and the time and the place you’ve put us in, for the spread of your grace and your love that others might be included in the long line of those who have been saved by your grace, God we pray, we pray for specific names. I think about specific names of people I’m praying for, that they would come to know Christ. Please, oh God, please save those names, those people, individuals, and then God we pray, we pray for 5,384,000, however many people, you know all the Awan in Pakistan.
God, we pray for their salvation. We pray that you would draw them to Christ, please, oh God, to your love in Jesus. We pray for that and millions of others that you know their name, billions of others, you know their name. God, please cause our lives to count for the spread of your name, ultimately, in the lives of people around us and the lives of peoples around the world. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.
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