Nehemiah: Rebuilding, Restoring, and Redeeming

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This Sunday I hope to deliver the message I intended to preach two weeks ago entitled “A Fresh Start: A New Beginning with God.” (You can read about it here) That Sunday, God had different plans for Jamie and me as we welcomed the birth of our newborn baby girl, Charlotte Noelle. Charley (with “ch”), as we call her, is doing well and she is keeping us on our toes, but we are discovering there is no place we would rather be.

In this post I would like to introduce our first sermon series of 2016, starting January 24th. I have been praying about what God wants us to learn from His Word this year and what part of His Bible He wants us to study. Embarking on a sermon series is kind of like shoving off to sea on a ship headed for a destination, but unsure of how the voyage will fair or how long it will take. However, I know God has a plan for this series and a purpose in burdening me with this study. This voyage through the book of Nehemiah will be exciting. In the book, there is a little bit of something for everyone. The book has a varied mixture of literary styles: a general’s diary, a governor’s report, a civil record, a management handbook, and a memoir. The main character is Nehemiah who is an inspiring leader soldiering on through thick and thin. He leads the Jews back to Jerusalem to raise the walls of Jerusalem back up from the ashes. He leads from ruins to restoration. He helps repair, rebuild, and restore the physical city, but more importantly reforms the spiritual condition of the nation of Israel.

The story of Nehemiah is relevant for us all because this is exactly what God has done with us. We were scattered in exile. We were lost and wandering. We were seeking our own with little thought of God. Yet, through his providential direction He has brought us home, rebuilt our lives, and given us a place at his table as his sons and daughters. Through the death and resurrection of His Son Jesus Christ we are restored to “Eden-like” communion with God. Man once walked in the cool of the day in the garden side-by-side with God, but because of sin we are now afar off. Yet, when we draw near to God he draws near to us. When we trust in Him, He comes to live inside of us. We have a comforter and a guide and through Him we come boldly to the throne of grace to receive help in time of need. In the time period of Nehemiah, we see the Israelite nation in an extreme time of need. But what did God do? Did he leave them in their desolation? No, he redeemed them, just like He has done for us. Praise God for His marvelous redemption.

The plan is to begin our study in Nehemiah by first setting the scene. To do so, we will look at the books of Haggai, Zechariah, and Ezra. These books took place right before and during Nehemiah and will provide helpful background information to help us understand historical implications surrounding this time period.

So please join me in praying for this coming study. I know God is planning to do great things in our church through Nehemiah, but those great things must first start in your heart as you allow his Word of God to change you from the inside out. To begin that change we all need to pray for Holy Spirit to move in us.
In Christ,
Jordan Moody