READ: Nehemiah 11-13
THINK: Are you up to the task? Could God use you to lead and fulfill a purpose like Nehemiah's? He can if you're ready to rely on Him and press on in the face of opposition. Both Ezra and Nehemiah faced challenges that threatened to undermine their work. Yet, they ultimately accomplished God's extraordinary purposes with God-inspired perseverance and God-given power. It doesn't matter who you are; you can begin fulfilling God's goals for your life today. It starts with the desire to honor God, the discipline to change, the devotion to apply God's Word and a deep passion to pursue a more purposeful relationship with Christ.
RESPOND: How are God's goodness and mercy evident in the fact that Israelites could resettle their ancestors' property (11:20)? Why do godly praise and thanksgiving inspire more praise and thanksgiving (12:24)? What role did musicians play in dedicating the wall (12:27ff)? Why does music aid and inspire celebration? Who derived support from the people's contributions and tithes (one-tenth of their harvest and income), and how does this principle apply in churches today (44:47)? In Nehemiah's time, what was it about the surrounding nations and their history with Israel that made it necessary to exclude them from the assembly? Though there is to be no such segregation in the New Testament church, how does the principle of spiritual separation apply to Christians today? (See 13:3 note, subpoint 2.) What happened among the Israelites while Nehemiah was back in Persia? (See 13:7 notes.) What does this indicate about people's tendencies when they lack leadership? How are people neglecting God's house (13:11) if they use it for unworthy purposes or fail to support their ministers? (See 13:12 note.) Why was it a serious issue to violate the Sabbath, and what did this reflect about the people's priorities and devotion to God? (See 13:17 note.)
PRAY: Pray that God will help you to faithfully support the ministers and ministries of your church. Pray for the devotion and discipline to faithfully follow Christ even in the absence of leadership. Give God praise and thanks for several specific issues regarding your life and relationship with Jesus.
ACT: If you play an instrument, play or compose a worship song. If not, sing and praise God to familiar worship music. Share some good Christian music with a non-Christian friend. Also, verbally express to others some reasons and things for which you're thankful. Make a deliberate effort to be gracious to everyone. Say "thanks" more often.
New Testament FIRE Starters are now available in a yearlong, daily devotional book. This hard cover book is laid out in 365 daily devotionals allowing you to take FIRE with you! Great for personal use, to use as a family or give as a gift.
Order your hard copy of the FIRE Starters book today!
If you do not have a Fire Bible Student Edition, place your order NOW!