Saturday, September 17, 2016

Nehemiah-Our Enemies Plot to Stir Trouble..BUT We Prayed and...

By Mary Vee
Nehemiah 4

From Nehemiah's Journal




My name is Nehemiah. I have been a servant in Babylon for a long time. I was cupbearer to the king. 

I was sent to Jerusalem to insure the people would rebuild the walls. I rallied my Jewish brothers to get busy. Each to his own task. The worked moved along at a great pace...until.


Sanballat started the trouble. He was so raving mad about Jerusalem's walls rising in front of his face. He, of course, was not a Jew and enjoyed seeing hardship brought on the Jewish nation. He lived here with his body not with his soul. 

Sanballat no sooner finished tormenting the working men when his buddy, Tobiah from Ammon started in. Tobiah yelled, "What these Jews are building is such bad quality--if a fox climbed up on it, he would break down their wall of stones!"

Ah, Yeah. That was a wicked thing to say.

I was angry, really angry at these men who dared to stop us from completing the job God gave. So, I prayed to the God of Heaven who listens to the cries of His people, "Hear us, our God, for we are despised. Turn these men's insults back on their own heads. Give them over as plunder in a land of captivity. Do not cover up their guilt or blot out their sins from your sight, for they have thrown insults in the face of the builders of Jerusalem."

I said my prayer loud and strong for all the men to hear. I would not sit around, nor cower while those who did not approve of this project ridicule us. 

I would stand strong and show the Jews that obeying God and refusing to back down to bullies was the right choice.  

I congratulated the men for each portion they completed. This was a huge job, but we had workers. Strong workers that could do the work. So we rebuilt the wall till all of it reached half its height then took a break. In truth, the people worked with all their heart..and the sight brought such a powerful energy within me I cheered them on to do more, I worked next to them, and we all praised the God who empowered us.

I knew this would not be the end, though. Sanballat and Tobiah gathered Arabs, Ammonites, and the men of Ashdod. Their spies told them we had gone ahead with the repairs to the Jerusalem walls and were filling in the gaps. 

My spies said Sanballat's furry rose to epic levels. He and his men stood and shouted, raising their fists. 

A Jerusalem gate. They are not small!! At this point
the men have built these walls half this height.
Photo Courtesy
I know what fueled this anger. 

If the Jews completed the walls around Jerusalem, they would become unified, would worship their God, and turn away from idols. The God of Heaven would protect them. 

Sanballat's men had heard the stories of what happened in the past. To the Egyptians, the Philistines. Moses. Samson. Elijah's challenge against Queen Jezebel. King David. Esther. So many more. They'd heard the stories how God protected, fought, restored, provided for...they heard them all...and were afraid.

Sanballat and his men made a plan to come and fight against us, to stir up trouble against the rebuilding of the wall. 

But...

We prayed to our God and posted a guard day and night to ward off this threat.



Come back next time to see what happens.
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sources: New International Version, New King James Version 
               


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