Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Nehemiah 2:11-20

11 I went to Jerusalem, and after staying there three days 12 I set out during the night with a few others. I had not told anyone what my God had put in my heart to do for Jerusalem. There were no mounts with me except the one I was riding on.
13 By night I went out through the Valley Gate toward the Jackal Well and the Dung Gate, examining the walls of Jerusalem, which had been broken down, and its gates, which had been destroyed by fire. 14 Then I moved on toward the Fountain Gate and the King's Pool, but there was not enough room for my mount to get through; 15 so I went up the valley by night, examining the wall. Finally, I turned back and reentered through the Valley Gate. 16 The officials did not know where I had gone or what I was doing, because as yet I had said nothing to the Jews or the priests or nobles or officials or any others who would be doing the work.
17 Then I said to them, "You see the trouble we are in: Jerusalem lies in ruins, and its gates have been burned with fire. Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace." 18 I also told them about the gracious hand of my God on me and what the king had said to me. 
 They replied, "Let us start rebuilding." So they began this good work.
19 But when Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiah the Ammonite official and Geshem the Arab heard about it, they mocked and ridiculed us. "What is this you are doing?" they asked. "Are you rebelling against the king?"
20 I answered them by saying, "The God of heaven will give us success. We his servants will start rebuilding, but as for you, you have no share in Jerusalem or any claim or historic right to it."

Questions to consider:

  • How does Nehemiah account for the amazing favor of the king in granting his requests?
  • What is the first step of Nehemiah’s reconstruction project? Who is the author of the master plan?
  • How do you respond to mockery of expression of your faith in Jesus? Why?
  • What is your heart to do for your people? For your city? For your neighborhood?

Possibilities for prayer:

Again we see the way in which Nehemiah does everything by acknowledging God. As he discusses plans to rebuild the city he does not forget to mention the way in which God has granted him immense amounts of favor in even being able to be with them. Do we always recognize the way that God has His hands on our own lives? Probably not. But today, let’s take some time to acknowledge the way in which God has clearly had His hands on our lives, and be thankful for that.