Lessons from Nehemiah


1.      There must be a need.  This need is known of God, but it does us no good if we don’t know there is a need.

2.      Chapter 1:1-3 - There must be a knowledge of the need.  This is what happened to Nehemiah when he heard of the condition of Jerusalem and its inhabitants.

3.      Chapter 1:4-11 - There must be power to do something about the need.  Nehemiah prayed to the God of all power before he did anything.  He must have a plan, but all the plans in the world are nothing if we don’t have the power to put those plans into action.  Nehemiah didn’t hear about the condition of Jerusalem, then do nothing.  He might have desired to remain comfortable in his present situation, but wasn’t content.  We shouldn’t be content to sit still and do nothing about the needs we know about.

a.      Nehemiah needed power to plan.

b.      Nehemiah needed power to build.

4.      Chapter 2 - There must be permission to do whatever must be done.

a.      Permission must first of all be granted from God.  If God doesn’t give His permission, nothing else matters.  This is called heavenly permission.

b.      2:7-8 - Permission must also be granted from the earthly permission from the powers that be.  Never think it is God will to receive His heavenly permission, then never get earthly permission from the powers (people) that He has put in charge of this earth.  Earthly permission will only be granted when there is an acceptable plan.  This requires forethought.

5.      Chapter 3 - People are needed to do the work.  People with zeal are needed more than people with skills.  Notice the type of people that helped Nehemiah build the wall around Jerusalem.

a.      Verse 5 - The Tekoites (a city near Jerusalem), but their rulers didn’t care much for the work.  The common people often care more than the rulers about God’s work.

b.      Verse 8 - The goldsmiths worked on the wall.  This was a very different kind of work than they were used to.

c.      Verse 8 - The apothecaries were perfume makers.  Working on the wall is very, very different from making perfume.

d.      Verse 18 - Some rulers worked on the wall.

e.      Verse 20 - Baruch repaired earnestly.

f.       Verse 22 - The priests repaired the wall.

g.      Verse 26 - The Nethinims - These people are the descendants of the Gibeonites of Joshua 9:27 that made the unlawful treaty with Joshua, and other people that have been captured in various wars.

h.      Verse 28,29,30 - These various people repaired the wall nearest their homes.  This makes for good work because it is easily understood why the wall must be repaired correctly.

6.      Chapter 4 - There will always be opposition to any work God gives us to do.  don’t worry about them, just keep on doing what God wants you to do.

7.      Chapter 5 - There will often be internal problems.  External problems (like in chapter 4) do not hurt so bad, but internal problems (like chapter 5) can literally destroy the work of God.

8.      Chapter 6 - The enemy always wants us to compromise with them.  Never do that.  The consequences are eternal.

9.      Chapter 7,8, & 9 - Worship (in spirit and in truth) is the result of faithfulness.