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2016.Jun.
01 Wed
 
Rebuilding Security
[ Nehemiah 1:1 - 1:11 ]
 
1. The words of Nehemiah son of Hacaliah: In the month of Kislev in the twentieth year, while I was in the citadel of Susa,
2. Hanani, one of my brothers, came from Judah with some other men, and I questioned them about the Jewish remnant that survived the exile, and also about Jerusalem.
3. They said to me, "Those who survived the exile and are back in the province are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire."
4. When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven.
5. Then I said: "O LORD, God of heaven, the great and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love with those who love him and obey his commands,
6. let your ear be attentive and your eyes open to hear the prayer your servant is praying before you day and night for your servants, the people of Israel. I confess the sins we Israelites, including myself and my father's house, have committed against you.
7. We have acted very wickedly toward you. We have not obeyed the commands, decrees and laws you gave your servant Moses.
8. "Remember the instruction you gave your servant Moses, saying, 'If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the nations,
9. but if you return to me and obey my commands, then even if your exiled people are at the farthest horizon, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place I have chosen as a dwelling for my Name.'
10. "They are your servants and your people, whom you redeemed by your great strength and your mighty hand.
11 Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name. Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the presence of this man." I was cupbearer to the king.
 

Reflection
Weeping for the Vulnerable (1:1–4)
The book of Nehemiah tells the story of the returned Jewish exiles rebuilding of the wall of Jerusalem. In this passage we are introduced to Nehemiah, the kings cupbearer, who mourns over the broken state of his people and his city. The remnant who survived the exile and have returned home still cannot find rest as the city wall has been destroyed and they are left vulnerable to enemy attack. In the comfort of the kings court, Nehemiah could have easily brushed off the news of Jerusalems disgrace. But God places a heavy burden on Nehemiahs heart for his afflicted brothers and sisters, and he responds by mourning, fasting, and praying on their behalf.

Defending the Vulnerable (1:5–11)
Nehemiah cries out to God and first confesses his sins and the sins of his people. He then remembers Gods promise to gather His scattered people and bring them into His dwelling place if they return to Him and obey His commands. The book of Nehemiah is a record of Gods faithful answer to Nehemiahs prayer. Through Nehemiah, God offers His people a path back to a place of security in Him. Our God hears the confessions of repentant souls, and He responds to the cries of the vulnerable. Not only is He able to rebuild ruined walls, but He also has the power to restore broken lives. And just as Nehemiah was positioned by God to be used for His plan of redemption, we too can be used by God to bring hope to the lost.


Application
- Do you have a loved one who is living outside the walls of Gods protection? Surrender that person to God in prayer and intercede on their behalf.

- There is great power in the prayers of a faithful individual. Do you feel powerless to help the vulnerable around you? Pray to the God who is mighty to save.

A Letter to
God
One True God, You are mighty to save! I cry out to You and confess the sins of my people. I ask that You call out to the lost, lead them to repentance, and restore them to You. In Jesus name. Amen.
 
 
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