Bible In One Year-Day 182 (Monday, July 01, 2013)
Commentary: Nehemiah4-6. Nehemiah faced two difficulties whilst rebuilding the walls and the gates of Jerusalem; oppositions from outside of the camp and that within the camp. With these difficulties, Nehemiah never lost focus. He recognized detractors and identified problems. He handled each difficulty tactically and prayerfully.
His adversaries became more aggressive towards the end of completing the work;
Nehemiah 4:7 “But it came to pass, that when Sanballat, and Tobiah, and the Arabians, and the Ammonites, and the Ashdodites, heard that the walls of Jerusalem were made up, and that the breaches began to be stopped, then they were very wroth,”
We need to know that the ears of the enemies are always on ground wanting to hear everything about you. They carry negative insinuations about you and your work; they are just distracters. Your failure is their wine of joy, but your success is their sorrow. This should be our understanding of spiritual warfare;
2 Corinthians 10:3-5 “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;”
The internal problem was making the heart of the laborers to fail gradually with a lot of confusion on ground;
Nehemiah 4:10 “And Judah said, The strength of the bearers of burdens is decayed, and there is much rubbish; so that we are not able to build the wall.”
The enemies always look for ways of starting internal confusion to pave way for external invasion;
Nehemiah 4:11 “And our adversaries said, They shall not know, neither see, till we come in the midst among them, and slay them, and cause the work to cease.”
For the external adversaries of Nehemiah to have their way, they hired Shemaiah the son of Delaiah as a secret informant. This informant tried to deceive Nehemiah into the hand of the enemy through false prophecy (Neh6:10-13);
Nehemiah 6:13 “Therefore was he hired, that I should be afraid, and do so, and sin, and that they might have matter for an evil report, that they might reproach me.”
Nehemiah displayed the attribute of a great leader; he refused to run from danger. Another great attribute was that Nehemiah was able to encourage his subjects and they built with great determination, Neh4:6. This is the power of leadership.
Both difficulties which Nehemiah faced were tackled spiritually before taking actions physically. Without any contradiction, prayer works. However, we should not limit everything to prayer, we need the spirit and skill of leadership to run God’s project. That Spirit was in Joseph as remarked by Pharaoh. It was in Moses, Joshua, Jehoshaphat and other great leaders in the Bible. Nehemiah was a good example of a great leader who successfully managed the people, conflicts, financial crisis, and problems with spiritual warfare. He would have been led into life regret and reproach but he refused to, because he remained focused;
Nehemiah 4:16-18 “And it came to pass from that time forth, that the half of my servants wrought in the work, and the other half of them held both the spears, the shields, and the bows, and the habergeons; and the rulers were behind all the house of Judah. They which builded on the wall, and they that bare burdens, with those that laded, every one with one of his hands wrought in the work, and with the other hand held a weapon. For the builders, every one had his sword girded by his side, and so builded. And he that sounded the trumpet was by me.”
DON’T FORGET THE TRUMPET. Nehemiah’s military and civil administration was superb. It is good for us to be focused when running God’s project. For 12 years he took his eyes away from self satisfaction but faced what he was doing. He got no allowance for those years, Neh5:14. By this, he had the integrity to solve the internal problems.
Let us seek for the old path where we could find rest. Let us listen to the trumpet’s sound, wherewith we could escape the calamity to come. Our reading for today is Nehemiah7-9. Keep the fire burning and alive.
Pastor Supo Abayode
Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries