Irvin Wasswa- Tylertown Campus Pastor LHBC
6 Now when Sanballat and Tobiah and Geshem the Arab and the rest of our enemies heard that I had built the wall and that there was no breach left in it (although up to that time I had not set up the doors in the gates), Sanballat and Geshem sent to me, saying, “Come and let us meet together at Hakkephirim in the plain of Ono.” But they intended to do me harm. And I sent messengers to them, saying, “I am doing a great work and I cannot come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and come down to you?” And they sent to me four times in this way, and I answered them in the same manner. In the same way Sanballat for the fifth time sent his servant to me with an open letter in his hand. In it was written, “It is reported among the nations, and Geshem also says it, that you and the Jews intend to rebel; that is why you are building the wall. And according to these reports you wish to become their king. And you have also set up prophets to proclaim concerning you in Jerusalem, ‘There is a king in Judah.’ And now the king will hear of these reports. So now come and let us take counsel together.” Then I sent to him, saying, “No such things as you say have been done, for you are inventing them out of your own mind.” For they all wanted to frighten us, thinking, “Their hands will drop from the work, and it will not be done.” But now, O God, strengthen my hands.
In Nehemiah chapter 6 we pick up near the end of the mission of God that Nehemiah was sent to accomplish. If you remember, the Israelites at this time were living in captivity in Babylon. All the while their homeland, Jerusalem, laid in shambles and enemy forces were going in robbing the city and taking advantage of those Jews who escaped Babylon and returned back to Jerusalem. God had called Nehemiah to rebuild the walls of the city to protect the people. They were near the end of the major task.
In Nehemiah 6 the Bible says that all they had left to do was to put the doors on the gates. Here was the problem Nehemiah was facing: He had some enemies that were totally against him doing the work of God (Sanballat, Tobiah and Geshem). These three hooligans tried several times to stop the work of God, but here’s the thing: The movement of God cannot be stopped! In Chapter 6, they try one last time to stop him by setting up an ambush, but to no avail.
Nehemiah made the decision to ignore the hooligans and Stay on the Wall. Nehemiah didn’t throw in the towel early; he was steadfast in the work until it was finished.
Consider how he was able to stay on the work God called him to do:
1) He saw the importance of the work. V.3 He made mention that the work he was doing was too great of a work to quit before he was finished. The work wasn’t great because Nehemiah was someone special; it was great because it was God’s work and God was the one who called him to it. Listen friend, whatever the Lord has called you to do is important, so don’t quit. Don’t quit in your attempts to share the Gospel with that neighbor/friend. Parents, don’t quit choosing to raise your child in the way of the Lord. Married couples, don’t quit pursuing a godly marriage. Child of God, don’t quit on your walk with Him. Stay on the wall!
2) He Leaned on the Lord for Help v.9 In the midst of temptation, Nehemiah went to the Lord in prayer for strength to finish the work. We are in need of the Lord’s help to continue to stay on the work God has called for us to do. The solution for us staying on the wall is not to try to muster enough of our own strength, but to run to the Master who has the ability to strengthen us to keep going. (Isaiah 40:28-31)
I encourage you today to have the heart of Nehemiah and choose to stay on the wall. I know the last year and a half has been difficult. I understand that there may be a desire to quit, but listen: Stay on the wall! Continue to cultivate and grow that marriage relationship. Stay in that job God has called you to work in. Continue to raise your kids in the Lord. Continue in the work the Lord has called you to do until it is finished because it is worth it.
By the way, as a side note, Nehemiah and his crew ended up finishing building the wall and you want to know what happened next? The people of Israel experienced one of the greatest revivals of the Old Testament (Nehemiah 8-13). Stay on the wall!
1 Corinthians 15:58: Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.
PRAYER FOR TODAY: Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for who You are. Help me to choose to stay on the wall! In Jesus’ name, Amen!
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
2 Samuel 7:22– 22
Therefore you are great, O Lord God. For there is none like you, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears.