Summary: This is a sermon that shows how to prepare for revival
SOMETHING GREAT HAPPENED AT THE WATER GATE
TEXT: Nehemiah 8:1-8
INTRODUCTION: There was a Watergate in our recent history that something bad happened. This is not the water gate that I am talking about. Chapter 8 tells about a much different Water gate. Something good happened at this water gate. This is an exciting chapter which shows some necessary ingredients for Revival that took place at the water gate… In chapter nine, Revival takes place because of what happened in chapter 8. Everything started happening for the good when “all” the people gathered together as one man into the street that was before the water gate. (V. 1)
I. AT THE WATER GATE THE WORD WAS MAGNIFIED (Vv. 1-4A)
When Nehemiah caught a burden for Jerusalem, after he saw the terrible state that the city was in, had not only to rebuild the walls, he had to repair the broken down gates. This gate, however, needed no repairs. It was the seventh gate and it was through this gate that the water for the city was brought. The number seven is God’s number for completion and perfection. Moving water, in the Bible, speaks of the Holy Spirit. Still water pictures the Word of God. If you put these thoughts together, you may recognize that the people were gathering at the water gate which is a picture of the Word of God and that it was the only gate that needed no repairs. Praise God, likewise, this Old 16ll KJ Bible is perfect and complete and needs no repairs! If there is going to be revival, the Word of God must be magnified.
A. Notice How the Place Was Used To Magnify the Word. (“water gate”)
The place that was referred to was the water gate that was mentioned above. The People gathered to hear the Word read for six hours. When the Word is magnified the people are strengthened. Such was the case when Ezra read in Nehemiah chapter 8.
B. Notice How the Preparation Was Used To Magnify the Word.
The Law was brought to the water gate to be read and the pulpit was made for the absolute “purpose” of reading and preaching the Word. Every time that preaching is taking place, it needs to be with purpose.
C. Notice How the Preaching Was Used To Magnify the Word. (V. 8)
The preaching involved the Word being read so that it could be clearly heard and then there was the explaining of the Word so that it could be properly understood. Then there was the application of the Word.
II. AT THE WATER GATE THE WITNESSES WERE UNIFIED. (Vv. 1-8)
A. Their Unification Was Indicated By The Way That They Came. (V. 1) “All the people gathered themselves together as one man”
What a difference it would make in our churches if all the people gathered themselves together as one man… When we unify ourselves around the Word of God there is no greater way to give respect to the Son of God. Paul in I Corinthian chapter one discussed the problems of division. Division is very divisive and crippling to the church.
B. Their Unification Was Indicated By The Way That They Continued. (Vv. 2a, 3a)
The Word was read and they continued not for just “a brief, get it over as quick as you can” kind of sermon, but they stayed long and as a result of staying the Word of God begin to take its wonderful effect. I fear that many get in trouble because they fail to recognize the ongoing value of spending time in the Word of God. Once we have been saved, there needs to be a continuous diet of the Word of God to cause an ongoing sanctification and edification that can only come from the Truth.
C. Their Unification Was Indicated By The Way That They Considered. (V. 4) (cf. V. 8)
When the Word of God is being used, it should be used with great appreciation and with great respect. Attention and detail should be given to the Scriptures making sure that the Holy Spirit has opportunity to teach us. We should guard against distractions of any kind. Distractions as such can remove from us the ability to receive Truth. It may be described as was the Parable of the Sower with the fowls swooping down stealing the Seeds of Truth.
III. AT THE WATER GATE THE WORSHIPED-LORD WAS GLORIFIED. (Vv. 4-8)
1. “all the people stood up”
2. “all the people answered, Amen, Amen”
3. “lifting up their hands”
4. “they bowed their heads”
5. “worship the Lord with their face to the ground”
IV. AT THE WATER GATE THE WITNESSESS WERE IDENTIFIED (by the meaning of their names).
Names carry great significance in the Scriptures. You can learn much about a person and even his surroundings by the name that he carries. Lazarus had an interesting name. His name meant “God a help”. The Scriptures tell us that “a good name is rather to be chosen than great riches” Apparently, Lazarus’ mother could not give him money, but she gave him a good name. Every time someone called him, it was a reminder that God was his help. Even when the rich man failed to minister to his needs and he eventually died, the Lord had the angels to take Lazarus to Abraham’s bosom. This proved that God was really his help and it proved that The Lord was all that he needed. These names in Nehemiah also communicate great Truth as they are studied. I have looked up most of the names of those who stood with Ezra in Strong’s Concordance to show their meanings. May we learn from these old saints of old as we study their names?