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May 30, 2007

Rise up with Passion for God's call on your life

Background:The book of Nehemiah ends with a look at Nehemiah as a man, working towards fulfilling God's plan through him. The Jerusalem wall was dedicated and the chosen people started dwelling in the ruins of Jerusalem city and rebuilding it as they lived there. Nehemiah had set up a good organisation of people to manage the affairs at the temple of Jerusalem. There were singers(worship leaders), caretakers of the storerooms of the temple where all the offerings of grains and other materials were stored. There were priests, gatekeepers and people of all sorts to serve at the temple. Once all was settled Nehemiah had returned to his work at the king's palace and while he was away things didn't go so well. Remember that guy Tobiah who had harassed them throughout the time they were building, he had convinced one of the caretakers of the storerooms to make space for him in the one of the rooms in the temple and was living there. Not only that the portions assigned to the Levites hadn't been given to them. The people of Judah had gone back to working on Sabbath day. Some of the people in Judah had married women outside their tribe and their kids weren't taught of the ways of the Lord, rather they were speaking the language of Ashdod. All this made Nehemiah very very mad and angry at the disobedience, the same disobedience which had cost their ancestors to forfeit their blessings.

Lessons I learnt from Nehemiah 12-13

  1. Beware of the usurper-Its easy to hang out with the people who have made it, but rarely will you find someone who will stick by someone who is working towards reaching their goal. They will be filthy from the days work, tired, not so famous..etc but would you still stick with them through their trials ? Tobiah is not such a guy, he used all his efforts in trying to discourage the builders of the wall(Nehemiah 2) and now when everything is all set, he managed to get himself a room in one of the storehouses(Nehemiah 13:4-5) of God!!! Beware of these for they are there not to support your work but at all times to destroy, even our enemy the devil, forever ready to encroach upon the territory that God has given us to build.

  2. Never treat a usurper kindly-When Nehemiah found out that Tobiah had taken a room in the temple of God the Bible says "8 I was greatly displeased and threw all Tobiah's household goods out of the room. 9 I gave orders to purify the rooms, and then I put back into them the equipment of the house of God, with the grain offerings and the incense. " He didn't give him a warning and wait for him to leave, he threw out his things. If there be something in our spiritual life, or our body the temple of the Holy Spirit that is not right, not from God, not bringing glory to God but rather stealing from God's Work in our lives, throw them out. Grab them and throw them out. Don't give such behaviours, feelings, thoughts that bring our spiritual life down, any foothold.

  3. Passion for the Lord's work-Nehemiah was so passionate about the work God had given him, he was willing to do whatever it took for him to keep the work going just as the Lord wanted to. He became a violent man when it came to obeying God. He threw Tobiah's things out of the temple room, he beat some men and pulled out their hair when he found they had been disobedient and mingled with other women. Even Jesus turned over the tables at the temple where people were trading in the house of God. I wonder do I have a passion to do that?

Conclusion: Matthew 11:12 "And from the days of John the Baptist until the present time, the kingdom of heaven has endured violent assault, and violent men seize it by force [as a precious prize--a share in the heavenly kingdom is sought with most ardent zeal and intense exertion]."

Nehemiah did not go about the work God had given him, in a gentle calm manner. He had been assigned with certain plans and ideas that God had given and he was going to do anything to make God's plan happen. He suffered violent assault through the enemies who sneered and jeered at him as they built the wall, yet he stuck by his task with the weapons and everything and finished it. Now when all was done, he wasn't sitting by the wall and admiring the temple and the wall, he was guarding it with his whole passion and determination. Lets get God's work through our lives done in passion. Jesus finished His work in 3.5 yrs of His life and He did it with such a passion it still changes lives. The Bible says that same power is at work within us who believe, then why can't we see it. Believers in the Living God- rise up in passion to fulfil God's calling on your life.

18I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, 20which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.

Ephesians 1:18-23


Sista Cala said...

That's some powerful Word, my friend. As you mentioned Jesus throwing out the money changers, I remembered doing a study on that a long time ago. He said they had made His house one of thieves and robbers. The broader aspect of that was they had robbed the believing Gentiles of a place to worship in the temple. The courtyard was as far as they were allowed to go under the laws of Judiasm.

Tobiah was obstructing the rightful occupants and work related to those quarters. In that regard, he was a thief, deserving of being thrown out and beaten.

audrey` said...

I agree with Sister Cala.
This blog is always filled with powerful words =)