The Art of Perseverance: Nehemiah 5:1-13 (Without This We Fail)

Without this we fail. But with this we conquer!

It was something the Jews with Nehemiah had forgotten. They’d done some amazing things already–endured extraordinary hardship from the outside.

They were unshaken from the death threats from the enemies all around them.

Guards worked overtime. Construction workers held tools in one hand and weapons in the other.

This perseverance was incredible!

But now the trouble came from the inside.

Those in leadership positions understand the difficulty of things falling apart from within. Pastors know this especially.

You are trying to lead by example. You’ve planned well and executed those plans wisely.

You’ve confronted conflict and protected your people. But now word comes to you that those whom you are seeking to protect and provide for are working against you.

Sometimes leaders face trouble from the inside. The reason is simple: where there are people present–there will be trouble.

Nehemiah faced it. In chapter 5:1-13, the Jews began selling their own children into slavery in order to have food to eat. They began to rent their vineyards and fields of grain and charge incredible amounts of interest to those who were starving.

In other words, they were quickly becoming just like those who had taken their families and friends into slavery. They were becoming just like the Egyptians who once enslaved their ancestors.

Nehemiah became angry. And he took the time to sort his thoughts to come to the bottom line.

What Was the Bottom Line?

Without this the Jews fail. With this they conquer.

Nehemiah hit the nail on the head. Here’s what he said, “What you are doing is not right. Shouldn’t you walk in the fear of our God to avoid the reproach of our Gentile enemies?”

He said more, but this was the bottom line.

The fear of the Lord.

If you want to persevere in trials, you must possess the reverent fear of God that Nehemiah had.

Walk in the fear of our God.

Walk in the fear of our God to avoid reproach from the enemy.

Walk in the fear of our God to avoid the pitfalls and potholes that often come with trials.

Walk in the fear of our God to avoid the consequences of cowardly fear.

Walk in the fear of our God to avoid unwisely running ahead of Him.

Walk in the fear of our God to avoid immovability.

Walk in the fear of our God to avoid anger turning into bitterness.

Walk in the fear of our God.

Don’t fear the naysayers.

Don’t fear those who ridicule.

Don’t fear the unknown future.

Don’t fear the baggage from the past.

In other words, don’t be afraid. Trust God.

He never fails. So if we trust in Him (walk with Him), neither will we.

He wants you to succeed in that which He has called you to do.

He wants you to grow, to learn, and to cultivate character.

He wants you to learn wisdom.

He wants you to enjoy Him.

So what are you afraid of?


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