Nehemiah 9:19 Not Abandoned

“Because of your great compassion you did not abandon them in the wilderness. By day the pillar of cloud did not fail to guide them on their path, nor the pillar of fire by night to shine on the way they were to take.” Nehemiah 9:19

Nehemiah and the priests were praying and worshipping God. In this prayer they spoke of the history of the Israelites. They pointed out that when the Israelites were wandering in the desert, God was still with them and did not abandon them. They had their needs met.

When going through difficult times, most people feel like they are abandoned by other people and by God. Often they feel that God does not care about them anymore and will not have anything to do with them.

Christians who have fallen into some type of sin, often feel abandoned. They feel the guilt of their sin and do not think that God wants anything to do with them anymore. They are also often abandoned by other believers. Many Christians tend to shun or shut out believers who have fallen into a sin, even when they try to repent.

The truth is that God does not abandon His people. As the Israelites were wandering in the desert because of their sin of rebellion against God, God was still with them, guiding and providing for them. They did not have the newest fashion of clothing, or the fanciest steaks on the table, or brand new Mercedes-Benz cars, but they had everything that they needed. They also had God’s presence in their lives.

You may be going through a tough time. This tough time could be because of something you did, or it could be just a time of testing that God has allowed the world to put you through.

Regardless of why you are going through a tough time, you can know that God did not abandon you. Jesus said that He would never leave you. God is always with you, seeking to lead and guide you.

It may not feel like it when you see the rest of the world with more things than you have, but it is still true. You will always have what you need. Trust God that He has not, nor will He ever abandon you, when you seek Him.

I pray today that you will always seek God; that you will know God’s presence in your life; that you will never feel abandoned by God; and that you will trust God’s guidance.

Nehemiah 9:6 Knowing Who God Is

You alone are the LORD. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry hose, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you. Nehemiah 9:6

After the Israelites had stood and listened to the Book of the Law of Moses being read from beginning to end, they realized what they had done wrong. They realized how they had walked away from God’s commands and why they were sent into captivity. Now they began to confess their sins before God. The Levites were leading the people in this confession. The first thing they point out is that God is to be praised and that He alone is God. It is God who made everything that is and deserves all the worship.

The world does not recognize who God really is. They want to believe that there are many gods, or even no god at all. When there is one god, then there is accountability to his ways and rules. People do not like to be held accountable to anyone, even a god. Therefore, in the eyes of the world, sin does not really exist. One cannot sin against something that does not exist.

As a believer in Jesus, however, there is a God. With God existing, there also exists His commands. When those commands are broken, there has to be either a punishment or a confession.

Those who have decided to follow Jesus have learned to confess those sins. The first part of confession is recognizing who God really is. He is the One who created everything and is in absolute control of everything. Because of this, He is the One who can make all the rules.

As a believer you must know this in your heart and mind. Realize that God is the only god there is in all of creation. Do not allow yourself to believe the way of the world that there are other gods out there.

God is the only one who should receive praise and worship for being God. He is the only one who should be sought for forgiveness and obeyed.

Who is God to you?

Is He just a god among other gods?

Or is He the God of all?

I pray today that you will know God personally; that you will know who God is; that you will worship God alone; and that you will let the world know who God is.

Nehemiah 8:8 Read And Share God’s Word

They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read. Nehemiah 8:8

Once the walls of the city were built the Israelites had gathered together to celebrate. This celebration would last seven days. Each day, all morning, the priests would read from the Book of the Law of God and explain what was being read to the people. This book was the books of Moses that contained God’s law for the people to follow. It had been neglected for many years, which had resulted in their being taken into captivity.

Throughout the world there are many things that are started, but left to fall apart after a time. The original desire for what was started was forgotten. Often it is forgotten because they do not remember why the thing was started in the first place.

When people lose the heart of why an event was started, they will lose the heart to keep it going. Loosing that heart is very easy as time passes on. The routine becomes so common that people begin to put it aside. Everyone wants something new, and to not keep going over the same thing again and again.

Living as a believer requires remembering what was said and done. God’s Word was given to reveal God’s plans and His heart for all people, and to show what every person must do and be like.

You must take time to read God’s Word each day. Not only must you read His Word, but you must also share what it says with others. God’s Holy Spirit will dwell in you and guide you into the meaning of what His word says. You will have the ability to apply every scripture to life in the way God meant it to be used.

Tell others what God’s Word, the Bible, means to you.

What has He told you today?

How have you applied it to your life today?

As you do these things, it will keep you in the center of God’s will for your life. You will also be working at building His kingdom by building others up with His Word.

Do not neglect His Word today. He has something to tell you.

I pray today that God will fill you with a desire to know His Word; that you will read the Bible daily; that you will tell others what God has told you; and that you will build His kingdom daily.

They Did WHAT?!!

Here is some great insight on who the church is and what the church should be like.

I have a good many friends whom I love and respect -and in several areas DEEPLY disagree with across spiritual, political and other dimensions. I say this because I wish for us to consider core implications of what early Christians did in the face of sometimes life-threatening or massively divisive attitudes about how to “be” a true lover of God and people.

Have any of us been hurt by others? Welcome to real life in the real world and indeed, sometimes authentic (yes!) marriage, family, social club, church, choir, indy band, sports team or motorcycle club…

So this is my response to several issues that I am convinced are core to loving our God and our neighbor as Jesus commanded. It’s about maturity, balance and indeed correction for a number of my longtime as well as newer friends who are FULLY CONVINCED they are on solid ground. In my view…

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Nehemiah 6:13 Intimidation

He had been hired to intimidate me so that I would commit a sin by doing this, and then they would give me a bad name to discredit me. Nehemiah 6:13

Several people were upset that the Israelites were building a wall around the city. They tried to get Nehemiah to move away from the wall in order to stop it from being built. One of the ways they tried this was to spread false words that they were about to be attacked and that there were people about to attack and kill Nehemiah. Nehemiah realized that all they were trying to do was intimidate him so that he would go against God’s commands and sin, thus discredit him.

When the world does not like someone who is popular and doing great things, they try to find a way to stop him. Usually when a person is doing great things, many people like him, but there are always some who do not. The easiest way to stop a person is to discredit him, make the people think he is worthless or false.

As the world looks at believers who are standing strong and true to God, the best way to stop a believer is discredit them. However, if a believer is standing true, that is a difficult task. The enemy then will try to intimidate a believer.

False lies are said to put pressure on a believer to do something sinful. In a workplace, these lies can get the person to do fight back in the wrong way or say things that are wrong and do not honor God. It can often appear that a person’s job is on the line, even though it is not true.

Once the world can get the believer to do something wrong, his testimony about Jesus becomes very weak. Many will no longer believe or follow God because of it.

You must keep your life focused on what God has given you to do. Do not let the pressure of this world try to intimidate you into do something against what God has told you to do.

Do not allow yourself to do something that would harm your testimony about what Jesus has done in your life.

I pray today that God will strengthen you to live for Him; that you will not give into the intimidation the world gives; that God will open your eyes to the false lies of this world; and that you will be a strong witness for Jesus.

Nehemiah 4:14 Fighting For Your Family

After I looked things over, I stood up and said to the nobles, the officials and the rest of the people, “Don’t be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your families, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your homes.” Nehemiah 4:14

As the Israelites were working at rebuilding the wall around Jerusalem, there were other groups of people who wanted to stop them. They tried to discourage them and threatened them. Nehemiah posted the people all around the wall with weapons to protect everyone from the enemies coming against them. He reminded them to not be afraid because God is awesome and then encouraged them to fight for their families.

During the Old Testament times, people had to physically fight for their lives and to protect their families. When Jesus came, He changed the fighting status from physical fighting to spiritual fighting. Now a person is to love his  physical enemies and do good to them.

The fight today is now a spiritual fight. Every believer in Jesus must fight against spiritual forces that are in this world. These forces are the forces of greed, theft, lust, hatred, jealousy, violence, and the list goes on. Everywhere a believer looks, one will see these forces trying to grab him and take him captive into the world’s ways of sin.

Jesus has overcome this world and all the dark spiritual forces in it. As a believer, you also have His strength and victory over these forces.

You, like every believer, has some family somewhere. They may be in your immediate home, or a long way off. Some may even be separate to where you do not really know them, but you do have family.

Having a family, means that you must fight for their spiritual lives. Daily fight for them in prayer that God will draw their hearts to Him and protect them from the attacks and lies of the enemy. Talk with your family daily about God’s love, mercy, rules, and protection.

Do not be afraid of the enemy, God is greater. Do not allow the world to win your family over. Fight for your family. Allow God to win the spiritual battles for their souls.

I pray today that God will show you how the enemy is attacking your family; that you will stand in prayer to God against the enemy; that you will live for God as a witness to your family; and that God will protect you and your family from the attacks of the enemy.

Nehemiah 3:1 Rebuilding

Eliashib the high priest and his fellow priests went to work and rebuilt the Sheep Gate. They dedicated it and set its doors in place, building as far as the Tower of the Hundred, which they dedicated, and as far as the Tower of Hananel. Nehemiah 3:1

Nehemiah had received word that the city of Jerusalem and the temple was not being built. He was working for the king of Persia at the time. After being given permission to go and inspect what was going on, he went to Jerusalem and inspected the walls of the city. He then gathered all the priests and the men from all of the tribes together to begin the work of rebuilding the walls.

As captives of the Persian government, the Israelites were given supernatural favor to rebuild their city. It was by God’s grace on them that the Persian king allowed them to rebuild.

People today have allowed themselves to be taken captive by the enemy of sin. Many have allowed themselves to be carried away by the enemy to a foreign land of sin. This includes people who were believers in Jesus at some point in their life.

Jesus has conquered the enemy of sin and death. When you choose to follow Jesus, you are now under His control. In His great love and mercy, He has given you permission to rebuild a house and a temple for Him. This is not something that can be done alone, but as a group of people with the power of the Holy Spirit.

This house and temple is not something physical as the Israelites were building. It is the house of God and the temple of God. Every person who is a believer in Jesus makes up a part of the house of God. Every individual believer is a the temple of God. The believers are called stones in God’s house.

You have a part in rebuilding His house and temple. As you witness and make disciples, you are building His house larger. As you give your life over to Jesus and live more like Him, you are rebuilding His temple.

Take time today to begin rebuilding God’s house and His temple. Be His witness and make some disciples. Live your life more like Jesus.

I pray today that you will be God’s holy temple; that you will make disciples for Jesus; that you will do the work needed to build God’s kingdom; and that God will guide you and give you the needed strength for the work.