Bible In One Year-Day 181 (Monday, June 30, 2014)
Commentary: Nehemiah1-3. Nehemiah and Ezra existed at the same period in history. Zerubbabel led the first return to Jerusalem, Ezra led the second while Nehemiah led the third and the last return. Nehemiah was a worker in the palace of the king of Persia before he was granted the permission to return to Jerusalem. His return helped in rebuilding the walls and gates of Jerusalem against oppositions to their peace based on the report he heard from his brethren from Judah;
Nehemiah 1:3-4 “And they said unto me, The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire.And it came to pass, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned certain days, and fasted, and prayed before the God of heaven,”
This report moved Nehemiah to pray for favor before the king because he was the cup-bearer before the king. The duty of a cup-bearer was to taste whatever was brought to the king to eat or drink before giving it to the king; in essence, it was a position for the trusted.
The state of Jerusalem and her well-being affected Nehemiah’s job as reflected in his countenance. The king noticed this and asked what the problem was. After relaying his concerns to the king, he was granted permission to proceed to Jerusalem. However, he demanded for a letter of authority to do what he intended doing in Jerusalem.
Many lives’ walls are destroyed and gates broken down and the enemy invade at will.
Ecclesiastes 10:8 “He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge, a serpent shall bite him.”
Breaking a hedge is going into sin and the serpent signifies the consequential curses with their discomforts. We take many things for granted nowadays not knowing that there are curses attached to any violation of God’s commandment. The church is losing its relevance and power because immorality is more in the church than what we have outside of the church. Programs upon programs are coming without achieving the kingdom goal; more of entertainers on the podium than vessels of gold. Gold is rare, i.e. not found anywhere and anyhow. Motivational preachers hold the microphones now to stir the emotion of sinners to be hardened in sin rather than breaking the power of iniquity. People answer altar calls along with the demons within them rejoicing. The church used to be a place of refuge before now. Unfortunately, some churches are death now and people run from her. The hedge of the church is broken and serpents have freeway in and out. Bishops, Overseers, Pastors and other workers run down each other instead of praying for unity;
John 13:34-35 “A new commandment I give to you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”
Ezra and Nehemiah worked together through persecutions, oppositions and difficulties to make sure there was sanity and moral in the land. They demonstrated what they believed. The Apostles of yester-years worked in the power of the Holy Spirit and the gospel prevailingly exploded with signs and wonders.
Acts 19:20 “So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.”
Unfortunately, that grace is scarce now. What we have is recycling of Christians; souls are not being won. Bishops and other religious leaders have taken over the church from God and His Spirit. The spirit of Nehemiah is replaced with the spirit of Judas Iscariot. Money to build cathedral are sought from anybody and anyhow. Unlike the days of Zerubbabel; the foreigners went to meet him to form a consensus in building the Temple, he out rightly rejected their offer.
Ezra 4:2-3 “Then they came to Zerubbabel, and to the chief of the fathers, and said unto them, Let us build with you: for we seek your God, as ye do; and we do sacrifice unto him since the days of Esarhaddon king of Assur, which brought us up hither.But Zerubbabel, and Jeshua, and the rest of the chief of the fathers of Israel, said unto them, Ye have nothing to do with us to build an house unto our God; but we ourselves together will build unto the LORD God of Israel, as king Cyrus the king of Persia hath commanded us.”
There is a truth we must know; the biggest cathedral in the world is nothing before God but just dusts. The most beautiful sanctuary is nothing but emptiness. The worship of sanctuaries and buildings are the vogue. Jesus gave a comment on such places;
Luke 21:5-6 “And as some spoke of the temple, how it was adorned with goodly stones and gifts, he said,As for these things which ye behold, the days will come, in the which there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
God is not living in any building but in us; Jesus changed this course in His earthly ministry. Our body is now the Temple of God. The adornment of the Temple of the Holy Spirit, therefore, is the fruit of the Spirit, Gal5:22-26. Unfortunately, the un-crucified wear collars and carry microphones. The best 3-piece suit is for the most “anointed”. The walls and gates need be repaired, beloved.
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 Nehemiah4-6. Keep the fire burning and alive.