9 . 5 . 2020
The following excerpt from Nehemiah 12 arrested my attention " God made them rejoice (observe the source) with great joy : the wives also and the children rejoiced: so that THE JOY OF JERUSALEM WAS HEARD EVEN AFAR OFF"(verse 43).
Well they had never suffered from Covid 19 with its attendant issues of fear, lockdown and future uncertainty we might defensively state!
I'm sure we're all better informed than that of their circumstances. Let's take some snapshots of these.
In chapter 1 the record was "the remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down and the gates thereof are burned with fire"
This broke Nehemiah's heart and truly challenged him. What should he do- just maybe it's all too hard and hopeless!
Well you'll know what he did "so I prayed to the God of heaven" (ch 2v4) First and vital.
What a result in Nehemiah's heart as with confidence in his God he says "the God of heaven HE will prosper us, therefore we His servants will arise and build"(2v 20).
The enemy raises the attack (yes the Devil makes his attack, characteristically first subtly as an angel of light then ferociously as a roaring lion) Nehemiah is not ignorant of his devices and has this retort for his emissaries "ye have no portion nor right nor memorial in Jerusalem" , " I am doing a great work --- why should it cease"
Our God is a present help- "so the wall was finished… in 52 days" the city secured and the people safe and saved. Yes there were many issues to be addressed and corrected and order for the service of God's house to be re-established requiring much heart searching and painful actions to be taken.
In chapter 12 the wall is dedicated and companies appointed to give thanks and standing to sing- so that "the joy of Jerusalem was heard even afar off"
Let's in difficult days my brethren and sisters although deprived of our wont to meet together endeavour to emulate the spirit of Nehemiah and that small remnant and, through the various portals available, be heard sounding forth the Word of Truth and like this so long ago be credited with this testimony "their sound went into all the earth"