Summary: This was a message in a series on “joy in the Christian life” based on the book and life of Nehemiah.
So far as we have gone through Nehemiah = His book and his life
- Briefly looked at his Godly character
- His deep-seated desire to make a difference for the glory of God
- Godly separation = Necessity of prayer for Spiritual power for Spiritual work
- Willingness to sacrifice to obtain greater good / goal
- Commitment to co-operate with other like-minded individuals
- Challenged to examine our life for those characteristics
And we’ve also briefly examined some of the practical aspects of how Nehemiah and those who took up this call from God set about to accomplish their work
- Willilngness to follow Spiritual leaders
- Willingness to do the work God calls you to do
- To take our God given "ability" and give it back to God as "avail-ability"
- To really work with the attitude that we are serving God not man = Truth!
With this greater objective in mind
- To see how & where our lives are in line with God’s Will and Purposes
- Or how & where we are out of God’s Will and Purpose
- So we can fully equipped to enjoy the joy He provides
Today we want to begin by recognizing a crucial fact
> Neh. 2.17 = This very Godly man = So very Spiritual = Filled, Led, Walking
- Truly identified some grave and serious problems
> Neh. 2.18 = Encouraged = Inspired = Led them in the work
- People to their credit = Co-operative = Enthusiastic = Dedicated
Now let me ask you a question = Suppose on your way home from church today
- As you’re driving along you encounter a roadblock = What would you do?
- I know = Put up a "For Sale" sign and give up, right?
- Wrong! = You would look for the detour, the way around this hindrance / obstacle
- Might take you some time and effort = But your goal would be worth it, right?
When we speak of doing a Spiritual work for the Lord
- We might have a very Godly leader = Spirit-filled, led = Truly walking in the Spirit
- He might have a right understanding of problems = The right solution
- Encouraging = Inspirational = Lead / Serve with us
- We might be Co-operative = Enthusiastic = Dedicated
- But none of that guarantees that we aren’t going to face a hindrance / obstacle
> John 15:18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before [it hated] you.
> Matthew 5:10 Blessed [are] they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are ye, when [men] shall revile you, and persecute [you], and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great [is] your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
> 1 John 3:13 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you.
Very often the greater the calling for God = Work for God
- Greater the hindrance / obstacle we will face
- In fact once we seriously dedicate ourselves to living lives which are fully yielded to God
- And fully commited to His calling on our life
- With a total heart-surrender to be living in line with His Will and Purpose
- To the full extent of our understanding and ability
- Shouldn’t surprise if hindrances / obstacles come up right away > Neh. 2.19
Now that’s the very crucial fact I spoke of
- Recognizing when we do Spiritual Work for God will face Spiritual hindrances / obstacles
- Let’s examine some of the methods and principles demonstrated by Nehemiah and those who labored with him in dealing with the hindrances and obstacles they faced
Neh. 2.19 = Hindrance, Ridicule
- Question our motivation
- Attempt to throw suspicion on us = And the authorities
= Judge Roy Moore, Alabama, 10 Commandments Cases
- Overcome by confidence in God > Neh. 2.20
> Neh. 4.1-3 = Hindrance, Wrath and contempt
= Witnessing efforts, door-to-door, malls, street preaching
- Overcome by prayer and hard work > Neh. 4.4-6
> Neh. 4.7-8 = Hindrance, Conspiracy
= Abortion proponents, lies, media, judges, ACLU, Planned Parenthood
- Overcome by watchfulness and prayer > Neh. 4:9
ASIDE = Importance of prayer
> Matthew 17:21 Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.
> Matthew 21:22 And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.
> Luke 6:12 And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.
> Acts 10:31 And said, Cornelius, thy prayer is heard, and thine alms are had in remembrance in the sight of God.