N For Nehemiah - Successfully Facing Opposition
|Pic. Credit. letterslearning.com|
You try to spend some quite time with God, but the guy next door plays his music so loud you can’t concentrate. You express your belief in a Creator, but everybody in your science class laughs at you. You attempt to witness to a co-worker, but she doesn't want to hear any of that religious stuff. Do you feel like you're always facing opposition? You're not alone.
NAME: “Comfort of Jehovah”
DATE: 5th Century BC
IDENTIFICATION: ‘Artaxerxes’ cupbearer who was appointed government of Judah
STORY LINE: Nehemiah overcame all forms of opposition to be successful
READ IT IN THE BIBLE: Nehemiah 1:1-2:10
Nehemiah faced multiple forms of opposition, too.
He was a descendant of the Jews carried off to Babylon in 587 BC. In 539 BC Cyrus the Persian permitted the exiles to return to Jerusalem, but nearly a century later Nehemiah was still living in Persia. In 445 BC he received permission from King Artaxerxes to rebuild Jerusalem’s walls.
Hardly had Nehemiah arrived in Jerusalem when Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiah the Ammonite, and Geshem the Arab began harassing him. Their tactics included ridicule (Nehemiah 2:19), conspiracy (4:9), discouragement (4:10), death threats (4:11), opportunism (5:4) diversion (6:2), Slander (6:6), and more. But God sustained Nehemiah, and the wall was finished in fifty-two days.
Why was Nehemiah so successful in overcoming opposition? First, the people had a mind to work—it’s hard to defeat determined people. Second, Nehemiah prayed that God would strengthen him for the task—it’s hard to defeat strengthened people. And finally, everyone recognized that God was working through them—it’s hard to defeat encouraged people.
You can successfully face your opposition if you do what Nehemiah did—be determined, ask God to strengthen you, and to work through you. God will do it. He will always be there for you. That’s what He promised. CL
—Dr. Woodrow Kroll(Former President and Bible Teacher, Back to the Bible Int.)