A City on a Hill

A city rebuilt on her ruins, refers to historically built cities that were actually rebuilt over the top of previous city ruins reduced to rubble because of war, or settlements that were continually abandoned and resettled.

THE WORD SERMON

GJC

2021-09-13 3 min read

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A City on a Hill
By: E. Darrow | Oregon, USA.

In the wake of tragedy, we look to the one who restores, the one who makes all things new. If we turn to him with our hearts open and our minds set on him, he is faithful and just to forgive us for past mistakes, to rebuild what was broken, and to set us on high to shine for all to see his glory. By his grace and great mercy, we become a city on a hill.

“This is what the Lord says: “’I will restore the fortunes of Jacob’s tents and have compassion on his dwellings; the city will be rebuilt on her ruins, and the palace will stand in its proper place. Jeremiah 30:18 NIV.

A city rebuilt on her ruins, refers to historically built cities that were actually rebuilt over the top of previous city ruins reduced to rubble because of war, or settlements that were continually abandoned and resettled. This practice occurred repeatedly and the successive layers resulted in mounds or hills that lifted the city up above the surrounding land. Builders would use materials from what remained of the old city to form a new one.

In the same way, God uses what was broken in our lives to repair us, nothing we’ve gone through is wasted. He establishes us over the top of an old life, over our mistakes, bad decisions, fears and regrets. Our past becomes the place of elevation and our fortification through the indwelling and healing of God.

Looking back at what we've left behind can sometimes feel so discouraging, and you might wonder if you’ll ever recover. But remember, your future is not determined by your past. In looking ahead, a new vision arises, one with hope and light and restoration. That is the promise of God as He brings us into the plan and purpose that he has created ahead of time for each one of us. Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV, Ephesians 2:10 NKJV.

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11.

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10.

“’Therefore, thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, a costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed” Isaiah 28:16 NASB.

It was common practice for builders to first place a tested stone when assembly started on a new structure, a stone that could provide stability and carry the weight of the entire building, to guarantee that it was sure footed and the foundation remained strong. That stone was called a cornerstone, and the cornerstone of our lives is Jesus Christ. Jesus is our firm foundation, believing in him and in what he achieved through his death and resurrection we stand firmly.

You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Matthew 5:14 KJV.

It is the light that shines through us, the restoration and fullness that shines through our once barren ruins. We are lifted up and seen by others in such a way that the light of God and the light of truth cannot be hidden.

We can walk on streets that are lighted, our ways guided, we can dwell in our hometown and rest. Isaiah 61:4 NKJV. The Lord plants seeds over the destitute and barren areas and they produce fruit, beautiful gardens for shade, rest for healing, and sustenance for living and hope. God is so good to us. One by one he lights the pathways of our hearts and we shine like a city lit up. Our life is lit up and our foundation of peace and prosperity is truly established by God.

And they shall rebuild the old ruins,
They shall raise up the former desolations,
And they shall repair the ruined cities
The desolations of many generations.
Isaiah 61:4 NKJV.

We are a city on a hill.