Reviving The Stones, Rescuing Out Of The Rubbish, Pulling Out Of The Fire, Rebuilding The Walls

Nehemiah 4:2 – And he spake before his brethren and the army of Samaria, and said, What do these feeble Jews? will they fortify themselves? will they sacrifice? will they make an end in a day? will they revive the stones out of the heaps of the rubbish which are burned?

Lamentations 3:22 – It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.

Hey all, new blog today. Nehemiah, a man whose heart was turned to God, a man of God, used of God. There’s so much we learn from his life. Nehemiah was the king’s cup bearer. Judah had been destroyed and taken in captivity, they paid a very high price for forsaking God, for their utter wickedness, and God judged them severely… a remnant was left, but Jerusalem had been utterly wasted. God put a burden on Nehemiah’s heart, he asked and heard of the state of the remnant and Jerusalem… and he wept, and mourned, and fasted, and prayed to God. He humbled himself greatly before God, he prayed earnestly and read his prayer in Nehemiah 1:5-11. Please do. Prayers like that are missing today. Missing in my own life. Honesty before God. Confessing sin, repenting of sin. Luke 18:13 – And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. God used Nehemiah to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. Nehemiah is a book of rebuilding, revival, restoration. And today we need revival. I suggest reading Nehemiah, because I can’t really do the story justice in this blog at all, and haven’t thus far! Just like the whole Bible, loaded with truth and relevance to us today. Because the God of the Old Testament is the same God in the New Testament. Jesus said I am, it was “I AM” that appeared to Moses at the burning bush. Jesus is the thread of scripture, it is all about Jesus Christ, Genesis 1:1 to Revelation 22:21. You get truly saved, you get Christ in you, the hope of glory, and suddenly the Bible becomes alive. The Spirit, the Lord is that Spirit the Bible says, guides us into all truth. He can and will open your eyes and ears today. Hebrews 13:8 – Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

The first thing we see is that Nehemiah faced opposition. And so will you. We have lots of opposition as saved people. Opposition at every phase of our Christian walk. Satan opposes us. He is an adversary, a resister, an accuser, a robber, a thief, a murderer. We also have this evil world, our flesh to deal with. There’s a lot against us. But if God is for us, who can be against us!? But we need help. That’s why simple prayer of Help Lord… does so much. We need God’s help. And he helps us. Nehemiah faced opposition from Tobiah and Sanballat… they were wicked men… the Bible says it GRIEVED them that a man was come to seek the welfare of Israel. Wow. And people will be grieved by you living for God, honoring God, seeking God. The world hated Jesus, the world will hate you. If the world doesn’t (and this doesn’t mean you live as a hermit, alienated from everyone… it doesn’t mean you insult people, the Bible tells us to live peacable quiet lives, to love our neighbors, to love our enemies) it probably means you’re of the world… maybe you’re saved and living and loving the world… maybe not saved. Paul wrote that Demas loved this present world, and he departed from Paul, he left Paul in the lurch.

Jesus healed a man blind from his birth. He bare such a simple and gracious testimony of what Jesus had done for him. This blind man put the Pharisees to complete shame. They got offended, insulted. Typical. Bible truth offends people. God’s word carried judgement, authority. John 9:34 – They answered and said unto him, Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out. John 12:42,43 – Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God. We have to accept that the narrow road is narrow for a reason. It is unpopular, people will hate you for it. The world loves his own Jesus said, but we are not of this world. When you are born again you are translated from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of his dear Son, the Bible says. If you want to be popular, accepted, loved by the world, just don’t bother with the narrow road. And it will hurt, because opposition won’t just come from “out there”, it will come close to home. Jesus’ family cut him deep, they didn’t believe him, the people he grew up with did not honor him, didn’t respect him. That’s why Jesus said a prophet has no honor in his own country. So you got to make a choice. In Psalm 23, the Bible says thou preparest a table for me… IN THE PRESENCE OF MINE ENEMIES. We have enemies, and often we can be our own worst enemy. The Bible says we destroy ourselves in Hosea. That’s why we need God’s word, the razor sharp ray of light that cuts through all darkness, all the rubbish. Don’t trust yourself, trust God. Trust his word.

And the walls slowly but surely went up. Nehemiah’s enemies mocked the walls. It was humble beginnings. Nehemiah 4:3 – Now Tobiah the Ammonite was by him, and he said, Even that which they build, if a fox go up, he shall even break down their stone wall. Well, well… our life, and faith can be very humble. In fact, it takes the simple faith of a child to get saved. A surrendering of ourselves. Letting go ourselves. Proverbs 3:5,6 – Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Think about what the Bible is saying. A newly saved person may know literally no Bible. We may be coming from a long way back. And most of us are, in fact all of us are. We are all lost sheep rescued by the shepherd. The onus isn’t on us (pardon the pun), the onus is on Jesus Christ. Because when we are saved we have Christ IN US. And he goes and fights our battles, the Bible says IN HIM are hid all treasures of wisdom and knowledge. So it doesn’t matter what background you have, who you have been, what’s happened. Just get those walls up. Because those walls are salvation. Isaiah 60:18 – Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise.

Walls are good. Walls keep the enemy out, they keep us safe, God’s word is safety. It’ll keep you safe from being deceive. Trust God’s word and your life is founded upon the rock, not upon the sand. Salvation is a wall for us today. And they are sure walls. Jesus saves us fully, freely and forever. Jesus said, I give unto them eternal life, and none shall pluck them out of my hand. Jesus said, all that come to me I will in no wise cast out. Jesus will receive you, he will save you. And your life can have humble beginnings. People can laugh at you, mock you, hate you, scorn you… doesn’t matter… you’ve got revival happening. Your life can be rebuilt, you can go a long, long way off, but nowhere is beyond God. But don’t think you can just push God away when he’s dealing with you. The Bible is also clear that when times up, times up. There are many people today who are reprobates, God’s finished dealing with them. Literally dead men walking. Nabal’s heart turned to stone. Nabal was a fool. You’re a fool too if you reject Jesus Christ. There will come a point in time where God is done with you, hey you might be young, and live another 50 years, but God’s already stopped moving on your heart. It’s a dangerous game, why gamble with your eternal soul. If God is working in your life, dial right in to him, yield to him, yield to God’s word, love the truth, receive the truth, repent, believe the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. He died for you.

Because revival starts at the individual. Doesn’t matter if it’s just you. Nehemiah was one man. Read his prayer in Nehemiah 1. He confessed not just his sin, but the sins of Israel. There was no pretense, no sham, no bull, no self justification. He was honest with God. And God honors the broken, the sincere, the genuine, the humble. Israel had been completely wasted. And with good reason. They ignored, they killed the prophets, they rejected God’s word, they were intent on their false gods and their own wicked ways. And they were completely rubbished, trashed, wasted by their enemies. Jerusalem was burnt and thrown down. Don’t ignore God’s warnings. We can laugh at the preaching of hell. It all seems so far away. We are so busy in the here and now… setting our life up… for what? The Bible says,It is appointed unto all men once to die and then after that the judgement. What’s our life consist of? Going through the motions of life? Ticking boxes… getting everything you’re entitled to? Playing the game… sliding to hell? Falling through the cracks? Why are you a Christian even? Are you a Christian? Are you even saved? Are you a Christian because that’s what your family is, was, does? It’s a tradition? It’s your culture?  You like the morals and values? You’re a good Christian boy or girl? You like your church? You may have got baptized and you tithe… good for you. Doesn’t make you saved. You may also be one of those Laodicean “Christians”… a Christian but turning the grace of God into lasciviousness. You just live like a devil, do what you want, have no interest in God’s word but claim the grace of God. God loves me, grace of God… but nothing on mercy, repentance, hell, judgement, sin. There’s extremes of every persuasion… only the Spirit gives balance. It’s a broad road that leads to destruction. How does your life line up to the Bible? Jesus wasn’t duped by the scribes and Pharisees. God’s not fooled, God’s not mocked. Jesus said, Why call ye me Lord, Lord and do not the things that I say? Many shall say Lord, Lord but Jesus will say depart from me I never knew you… cast into hell.. after a lifetime of SINCERELY playing the Christian game, even doing good things!! Balaam blessed Israel… but he went to hell. The Bible says many shall try and enter heaven but WILL NOT be able. MANY. Not a few. MANY. Its the blood of Jesus or it’s nothing. The reality is either there or it’s not. Ecclesiastes 12:1 – Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them. Those years will draw nigh, those evil days will come… your vain life will be shown for the waste it is and was. They laughed at Noah, but one day, the door was shut and it was game over. A whole world went down, only 8 people survived.We ALL need to have a hard honest look at ourselves in light of God’s word. The Bible says make your calling and election sure, work out our salvation with fear and trembling, to prove ourselves, see whether we be in the faith…

Now our lives can be like Jerusalem was. Our heart can be like that. We can be in a state of rubbished, burnt, we can and do need serious spiritual revival. We can be in captivity, long gone, long departed, seemingly in a lost cause, in an absolute mess. Christians can get in a big old mess. Look at the prodigal son, he was the son, he was still a son… all the while he was out there living it up with harlots, living like the devil. But the Bible says he came to himself. It took him going right down for him to finally come to himself. He returned, he returned in repentance, in humility, brokenness. And his father was so happy to see him, and welcomed him back. It is no wonder the Bible says there is rejoicing in heaven over one lost sinner that repenteth. I always wondered with the story of the shepherd leaving the 99 sheep to go and rescue the lost sheep… how stupid is that!! Aren’t the 99 more important? But Jesus is after the lost sheep. He came for the lost sheep. They that are whole have no need of a physician, Jesus said he came to not call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. Jesus said because the Pharisees said they saw, therefore their sin remained. The Pharisees were the truly blind ones. That’s why there is so much rejoicing over the 1 lost sheep found and returned. Jesus is the shepherd, we go astray, we get lost, but he comes and finds us. And there is rejoicing in heaven. Just like David rescuing his father’s sheep from the lion, Jesus tears up the lion, Satan is a roaring lion, Satan will devour your life, but we need Jesus, and Jesus is utterly victorious over Satan. There was a man in the New Testament, in Philemon, a man called Onesimus. He was a servant, and an unprofitable servant at that, to Philemon. But something happened to Onesimus, he got saved, he ministered unto Paul… and Paul sent him back and beseeched Philemon to receive him, not as a servant, but as a brother. Philemon 1:15 – For perhaps he therefore departed for a season, that thou shouldest receive him for ever. The Bible says that the longsuffering of God is salvation.

We all need rescuing. Jude 1:21-23 – Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. And of some have compassion, making a difference:  And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh. We are our brother’s keeper, we do have to help each other, look out for each other. We can literally pull someone out the fire of hell… by being faithful in word and deed. Our lives count. In 2 Corinthians, the Bible says we are living epistles, known and read of men. Our life counts hugely. Back in Genesis 14, Abraham went and rescued Lot. Lot got all caught up and carried away in the wrong thing. Lot went AWOL on God. Maybe Lot was never really founded and grounded like Abraham was. They were both saved, but they both took different paths. Lot didn’t spend much time in fellowship with God. Lot settled down in Sodom, Lot loved the world. And he got caught up, he fell in the slime pits… are you in a slime pit today? Our lives can get pretty slimy when we leave God’s word, when we disobey, go our own way, follow our lusts.

But Abraham had compassion, Abraham cared for Lot, he rescued Lot. But Lot didn’t learn his lesson, Lot went right back to Sodom. And then God sent angels to pull Lot out before God destroyed Sodom. Lot lost everything. Will you lose everything today? Satan is a robber, a thief, he’ll steal your testimony, your witness, your affection, your service, the life that could’ve been yours… and instead is wreckage and vanity. James 5:19,20 – Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins. Heed the warning of God’s word. Get grounded and founded in God’s word. You can end up like Lot, making bad decisions… Lot invested his life in something that was to be destroyed. He invested his family, his finances, his wealth, his affection, his efforts into something that God was going to destroy. Genesis 13:10 – And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar. If only Lot consulted God! And we think we don’t do the same… but we do the same today, we invest our life in vanity, in something not eternal. How many times have you consulted God’s word this week? Because God knows everything, why not base your life off HIS Word, instead of the words of others who have no clue, who don’t see beyond the here and now. Jesus is the beginning and the ending. What could be more advantageous and wise than building a life based on the word of God himself? His word GOES.

When Nehemiah got to the ruins of Jerusalem he scoped out the place. Nehemiah 2:12,13 – And I arose in the night, I and some few men with me; neither told I any man what my God had put in my heart to do at Jerusalem: neither was there any beast with me, save the beast that I rode upon. And I went out by night by the gate of the valley, even before the dragon well, and to the dung port, and viewed the walls of Jerusalem, which were broken down, and the gates thereof were consumed with fire. A dragon well and a dung port. That’s why your life is like is. The dragon, Satan, has a good old foothold, and you’re drawing water from his well. His well will result in the rubble that Jerusalem was. Satan’s well… he can appear as an angel of light. These new Bibles are from his well. New words, new spirits, new gospels, new Jesus’. Human philosophy, worldly junk… we all eagerly go to the serpent’s sewer lagoon. Because it is a sewer lagoon, but it appears to us to be great… because there is pleasure attached, it’s dressed up well … just like Jezebel who painted herself up… but whose deceptions did not get past Jehu, the KING. And it’ll take the word of the King to see through Satan’s deception today. Because we are no match for all his wiles and designs and inventions. He will spin you in his web. We need God’s word.

The dung port… why are you living there. So many people don’t get cleaned up, the man possessed with Legion got cleaned up by God. And what cleans us? The water of the word. Jesus said now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. How much better do you feel after reading God’s word? It can be a battle to open the Bible, but reading it restores our soul. It is our source of regeneration, renewal, our food, our sustenance, our light. In the beginning was the Word. That same Word from the beginning. Written down for you. We all have a copy. It used to be you had to go and see the prophet, but God has made it SO easy for you today. Talk about without excuse. God’s word in YOUR language, the gospel gone throughout the whole world. And the devil possessed man was in his right mind sitting at the feet of Jesus…. what he had been doing was dwelling in tombs, naked, wailing, possessed, leading a desperately foul life. Jesus said one word… Go. And the devils went. Jesus’ authority and hold and claim and stake to your soul trumps whatever Satan has on you. But are you happy dwelling in dung territory? The dung doesn’t seem like dung but it is. God’s got a good life for you. A life way above the sin of this world. Sure sin has pleasure. There is no denying that. But it’s short lived… its for a season. And later, the bite of sin… the bitterness… the regret… the mess. Our life gets really messy really quick. Our life is flaming wreckage. Just like those burnt stones, trashed walls. 2 Kings 6:25 – And there was a great famine in Samaria: and, behold, they besieged it, until an ass’s head was sold for fourscore pieces of silver, and the fourth part of a cab of dove’s dung for five pieces of silver. We can become so bare, so dry spiritually that we will literally eat the ass’ head and the dove’s dung. You don’t need to be eating that, you can eat from off the kings table. But you can be so backslidden on God, the ass’ head and the dove’s dung is your food.

Isaiah 64:6 – But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

You can be revived, rescued, pulled out the fire. In Ezekiel 37, there was a valley full of bones. A valley of bones. Look what the Bible says. Ezekiel 37:2 – And caused me to pass by them round about: and, behold, there were very many in the open valley; and, lo, they were very dry. That’s Christianity today. Very many, very dry. Because the waters been turned off. God’s word is missing. God’s pure word, that river of life has ceased to flow through churches. Ezekiel 37:3 – And he said unto me, Son of man, can these bones live? And I answered, O Lord GOD, thou knowest. Can you live? God knows. Only God can do it. The Bible says we are born… not of blood, not of the will of the flesh, not of the will of man… but of God. Salvation is a miracle, it is supernatural. It takes God. That’s why when God deals with you, pay attention. Don’t miss your day of visitation. Don’t grieve, quench, reject the Spirit gently moving on your soul.The dead is made alive. We are dead in trespasses and sins, alienated from God… very, very DRY. Keep reading Ezekiel 37:4-6  – Again he said unto me, Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. Thus saith the Lord GOD unto these bones; Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live: And I will lay sinews upon you, and will bring up flesh upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and ye shall live; and ye shall know that I am the LORD. It’s going to take the Word of the Lord. And when God brings true salvation to your life, true repentance, you will KNOW things. Get in the Bible… start KNOWING.There was still no breath in those bones, it is God alone who breathed into Adam the breath of life. At Penetecost there was a mighty rushing wind. Jesus said in John 3, he had spoken to Nicodemus, saying you MUST be born again. Then Jesus said in John 3:8 – The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit. Don’t miss this… You must be born again of the Spirit of God. Skipping to Ezekiel 37:13,14 -And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves, And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD.

Well hope all that made sense!! Nehemiah, great book of the Bible. The ENTIRE Bible at our disposal. Revival starts with me. Jesus makes that humble old book alive. Rivers of living water, get planted by the river of his Word. He leadeth me beside the still waters, he restoreth my soul. The woman at the well had her waterpot, after Jesus talked to her, the Bible says she left her waterpot. She went into the city and told others. Leave your own waterpot. Stop drawing from those same old wells of life. We can draw at empty wells in 2 Peter. Empty wells that have no water. We can hew out our own cisterns, which hold no water. In fact, we tend to do anything and everything BUT what God wants us to do. We exhaust everything else first before going to God. Naaman the Syrian had leprosy, he was an honorable mighty man… so can we be… we can have it all made, all sorted… BUT HE WAS A LEPER… we are all lepers… we are all sinners… we need to be washed… the double cure… the water and the blood that flows from Jesus side… Elisha told him to dip 7 times in Jordan… but he got ANGRY! No! How typical that we are willing to consider everything else bar the truth. We will read anything BAR the Bible. We want entertainment at church! Simple Bible preaching isn’t enough. We need a show, a performance, to do something… we want lights camera action! 2 Kings 5:13 – And his servants came near, and spake unto him, and said, My father, if the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it? how much rather then, when he saith to thee, Wash, and be clean? It’s so simple. Read your Bible. Just believe and do. Be not a hearer only, but a DOER of the word. Let Jesus give you the water of life… its a GIFT… a FREE gift… and it can be in you a well of water springing up into everlasting life. Can these dry bones live? Yes they can. God can breathe the breath of life into you today. Spiritually alive… that which was dead is alive… quickened, restored relationship and fellowship. Lost at Eden, but restored today. Walk with God by faith. No guessing games. Read the Word. God honors his word. It does not return to him void. Don’t let the Word fall to the ground, grab the crumbs from the off the table. Get every crumb. And God will give you more than crumbs, he’ll rain manna from heaven… he pours out his Spirit on the dry and thirsty land. Revival, rebuilding, rescuing can be all yours today. It’s not some big faraway, unobtainable, thing requiring experiences and a life times journey… just repent and believe the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

Psalms 85:1 – LORD, thou hast been favourable unto thy land: thou hast brought back the captivity of Jacob.

Psalms 85:2 – Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people, thou hast covered all their sin. Selah.

Psalms 85:3 – Thou hast taken away all thy wrath: thou hast turned thyself from the fierceness of thine anger.

Psalms 85:4 – Turn us, O God of our salvation, and cause thine anger toward us to cease.

Psalms 85:5 – Wilt thou be angry with us for ever? wilt thou draw out thine anger to all generations?

Psalms 85:6 – Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee?

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