Sanctified Stubbornness Sermon Blog Day 2
Now it happened when Sanballat, Tobiah, Geshem the Arab, and the rest of our enemies heard that I had rebuilt the wall, and that there were no breaks left in it (though at that time I had not hung the doors in the gates), that Sanballat and Geshem sent to me, saying, “Come, let us meet together among the villages in the plain of Ono.” But they thought to do me harm. So I sent messengers to them, saying, “I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down. Why should the work cease while I leave it and go down to you?”
The perception here that Sanballat & Geshem attempt to paint is one of peace, camaraderie, and agreement. The reality is that these men wanted to do Nehemiah harm by using a mirage of unity. Unity is not always unity. When we are fulfilling what God has called us to do – Celebrating our Great God, Connecting People to God and One another, Commissioning more to serve God – there are plenty of people who might attempt unity but create damage to us or our mission.
- Genesis 3:1-6The serpent tempted the woman with the idea that he was helping her. He approached her as a friend but was an enemy. It was a dangerous relationship.
- Matt. 4:1-11Jesus was tempted 3 times in the wilderness, and all by things that appeared helpful & good. He was tempted to make stone into bread, to jump off of the temple and have God rescue, and to be given the nations under his power. He refused them all, because the offers were coming out of a dangerous relationship.
The enemy may have put someone in your life who you thought was there to do you good, but instead he did you harm. It was a dangerous relationship. In fact, that person’s influence – or lack thereof – pulled you away from God’s calling, as Sanballat tried to do to Nehemiah. It was too late before you realize that you pulled away from God, away from His church, and away from His worship, and away from his people. That pulling away may have hurt, but that is no reason to quit on God. He invites you to return today.