The aim of the devotional bible study is to grow in the understanding and appreciation of motivational gift of the teacher.
Ezra 7:1-11, 25-26
1 Now after this, in the reign of Artaxerxes king of Persia, Ezra the son of Seraiah… 6 this Ezra went up from Babylonia. He was a scribe skilled in the Law of Moses that the LORD, the God of Israel, had given, and the king granted him all that he asked, for the hand of the LORD his God was on him.
7 And there went up also to Jerusalem, in the seventh year of Artaxerxes the king, some of the people of Israel, and some of the priests and Levites, the singers and gatekeepers, and the temple servants.
8 And Ezra came to Jerusalem in the fifth month, which was in the seventh year of the king… 10 For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the LORD, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel.
11 This is a copy of the letter that King Artaxerxes gave to Ezra the priest, the scribe, a man learned in matters of the commandments of the LORD and his statutes for Israel:
12 “Artaxerxes, king of kings, to Ezra the priest, the scribe of the Law of the God of heaven. Peace…
25 “And you, Ezra, according to the wisdom of your God that is in your hand, appoint magistrates and judges who may judge all the people in the province Beyond the River, all such as know the laws of your God. And those who do not know them, you shall teach. 26 Whoever will not obey the law of your God and the law of the king, let judgment be strictly executed on him, whether for death or for banishment or for confiscation of his goods or for imprisonment.”
Note: in the reading of today’s Text we will focus on the character and motives of Ezra the priest to better understand the motivational gifts of the teacher. This is one of the seven motivational gifts (also called “the gifts of the Father” according to 1 Corinthians 12:4-6) that each person is born with which drives his/her actions throughout his/her life.
- Teacher motivated people generally have the following characteristics. How can you identify them in this example of Ezra the priest? Comment and give verse references from the Scripture above.
- A deep reverence and respect for right and holy things.
- Puts emphasis on Scripture as the source of truth and key to success.
- They are known for being diligent, thorough and disciplined.
- The have a “black-or-white” / “right-or-wrong” view of the world.
- They delight in teaching what they have learned in a clear manner.
- The study and teach with patience.
- They speak with authority based on a confidence in the truth they have learned.
- The context of this account is of the Jewish exiles returning to their desolate homeland after 70 years in Babylonian exile. Who is the leader sent by imperial authority to rebuild the nation? Why do you think God commissioned a teacher motivated person with such authority in this critical time of the Jewish nation?
- Looking at Ezra as an example of a teacher gifted person – what should a person with this motivational gift be cautious of in engaging other people? [hint: how can this person be perceived in a conflict situation?]
- Considering the characteristics listed in Observation question 1 above, why do we consider teacher motivated people as “gifts from God the Father”? i.e. how do they benefit me, you and the world around us?
Application and Prayer
Note: If you have not completed the free online motivational gift test, do so now: www.gifttest.org
- Are you a strong teacher motivated person? Considering this example of Ezra:
- What are you grateful for about your gift, which you must cherish?
- What must you be cautious about in your interactions with others?
- Thank God for how he made you, and pray that he may open your eyes and heart to see and love the truth, that he may grant you endurance to diligently study the Scriptures and give you wisdom, loving patience, authority and creative skillfulness to teach others well.
- Who do you know that are strongly teacher motivated?
- Thank them for their good influence in your life – for their teaching and input as well as their example of diligent study of the things of God.
- Thank God for them and their good influence in your life. Pray that God will bless with even greater diligence, patience and revelation, as well as wisdom and love to judge right and inspire others to seek to know God and his will for their lives.