Summary: As a body of believers we are encouraged to rise up, build up, and work up in the strength of the Lord.
By: R. AuBuchon Jr.
In the past two weeks we have been invited to get in the boat and work together as a team.
Today we are challenged to rebuild the walls that will fortify family life, church life and community life.
Much like in the days of Nehemiah the walls that once protected and gave us a sense of security are in need of great repair.
Historically … after 70+ years of captivity God was bringing His people home. Zerubbabel and Ezra were used of God to rebuild the temple and now Nehemiah was called to repair the city wall. In the rebuilding Nehemiah would not merely be repairing the wall, but lives of the people lived inside the city wall.
Historically we learn … God is faithful to His promises and to His people. And He is always looking to repair and rebuild lives damaged by sin.
Nehemiah 2:18 And I told them of the hand of my God which had been good upon me, and also of the king’s words that he had spoken to me. So they said, "Let us rise up and build." Then they set their hands to this good work.
The challenge he places before the people is to rise up, build up and work up.
1. Rise Up …
"Let us rise up … "
"Rise Up" in the mind of the world’s focus would be … "Get up and get busy!"
I was asked the other day … "Are you staying busy?" My reply was, "Yes, I am always busy! Just not sure on some days if my busyness is accomplishing anything."
It’s easy to get caught up in an activity trap, in the busyness of life and to become discouraged with the results we receive.
Rise up … is more than "get up" … but it means to stir, strengthen, and succeed.
- Stir … up love
Hebrews 10:24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works,
- Strengthen … discouraged hands and the things that remain. ( Hebrews 12:12, Rev 3:2)
- Succeed … in wisdom (beginning of wisdom is to fear the Lord)
Ecclesiastes 10:10 If the ax is dull, And one does not sharpen the edge, Then he must use more strength; But wisdom brings success.
- Nehemiah prayed for success
- Nehemiah shared the plan of success
- Nehemiah believed God for success
To rise up takes a measure of belief.
Acts 3:6 Then Peter said, "Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk."
What you believe will either leave you sitting amongst the rubble or cause you to rise up and begin to build up the things that need to be repaired.
2. Build Up …
"Let us rise up and build."
The world suggests we always be doing the "new" signifying boredom with what we have.
The call was not to build something new … but to repair the wall and gates around them.
Build … begin to repair and set up
Sometimes God’s goes a new work. But there are times He desires to do a great work of repair.
40 times the words, repair, repairs, repaired appear in chapter 3.
The people rose up and together used their talents to accomplish the work of God.
While men seek better methods, God seeks better men. Men are so prone to trust methods or organizations to accomplish certain goals, but God wants better men, who are surrendered completely to Him, through whom He can accomplish His goals. (AutoIllustrator)
Interesting thought: the walls were to keep out what would harm and the gates were for letting in that which would help.
What have we let in that we should have kept out?
- Break down and Build Up
Ecclesiastes 3:3b A time to break down, And a time to build up;
- Break down isolation … build up fellowship.
- Break down individualism … build up ministry.
- Break down formalism … build up worship
- Break down immaturity … build up discipleship.
- Break down silence … build up evangelism.
- Build Up by Lifting Up
Isaiah 62:10 Go through, Go through the gates! Prepare the way for the people; Build up, Build up the highway! Take out the stones, Lift up a banner for the peoples!
- Build up by lifting up a structure of life.
- Build up by lifting up a standard of living
The Word of God tells of the structured way of life and the standard to sustain life.
1 Corinthians 3:10-15 According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. 11 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. 14 If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.