Nehemiah and His Grief

I said yesterday that the book of Nehemiah was written in first person; it's a book of determination and plotting, of steadfastness to God and intrigue. Because it's written in first person, I got into the first chapter and was reading it as a book read for "recreation".

Nehemiah is Scripture, and as with all Scripture, it is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.

In chapter one we meet Nehemiah. He was in Susa, which still exists today in modern-day Iran. He would have come to Susa when the Jews were exiled, but he still had at least one brother in Jerusalem. "Certain men" came to Nehemiah from Jerusalem and Nehemiah asked them for a report.

"The remnant there in the province who had survived the exile is in great trouble and shame. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates are destroyed by fire."

Nehemiah wept - for days. He wept, and fasted and prayed...and repented. And He asked God for mercy.

"O Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of your servant, and to the prayer of your servants who delight to fear your name, and give success to your servant today, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man."

Who was Nehemiah? He was the son of Hacaliah, brother of Hanani. He worked in the palace and was apparently on good terms with the king.

The first chapter concludes with a single line:

Now I was cupbearer to the king.

Winged sphinx from the palace of Darius the Great at Susa.

what does this mean to us?

Parts of Christianity are broken down.  Do we weep for the brokeness of Christianity?  Or do we seek to hide our heads in the sand with the make-believe story that things are "ok"?

In a time when false doctrine and false teachings abound, do we weep and seek to restore things to Biblical order?

How broken are we, for the brokeness of the body of Christ?

Share Button

7 thoughts on “Nehemiah and His Grief

  1. Right now, all of Christendom is suffering the heresy of Modernism. In some circles, this is called 'liberalism.' Modernist are currently winning the battle for the general public. A deffinition of Modernism is a bit loose. It is summed up by a combination of a few errors:

    Secularism: What occurs outside of spirituality does not matter. What is best for society or for individual pallate is the greatest good.

    Indifferentism: Christian truth may exist, but it does not matter. Or, the minimums are good enough.

    Pluralism: Christian truth is truth, but it is not the only truth. Mohammed and Buddah also bring truth. Fullness of truth is where they all agree.

    Historicism: the bible is a collection of poetic stories, which did not actually happen (ie deny miracles or work of God).

    This is a time for prayer and fasting for the repentace of souls. Christianity will survive Modernism, as it has survived all the other heresies. The good news is, a major portion of Modernism is on the wane. 50 years ago, most denominations accepted it. Today those denominations have either changed their views or are in severe decline (see ECUSA).

    If fear the next heresy might be worse.

  2. Actually, one of the biggest "brokeness-es" that I see (that I've seen experienced) is (I believe) Pentecostalism.

    The search for that "extra" word from the "Holy Spirit" (prophecy), along with the emphasis on tongues (if you don't have that gift, you might not be saved), leads too quickly to "faking it" - and that happens often.

    And unlike the heresies you mentioned, Pentecostalism is on the rise - world wide.

  3. How do you see Pentecostalism as a threat? They can be exclusionary, but so were the AGers and CofC. If they ask you if you can speak in tounges, I say yes. If they ask for proof, I can rattle some off (Say 'she drives a honda' 5 times fast).

    Correct me if I am wrong but you are a Calvinist... so shouldn't the Evangelical 'whatever improves my relationship with Jesus' be lumped next to Pentacostalism?

    As for the worldwide thing, my bio-father-inlaw (BFI) falls into this category. His pastor has been on CNN with 'holy laughter.' On a recent mission my pentacostal BFI friend claimed 500,000 folks got saved in Ukraine. I fear the statistics. I think they ask everyone who want to go to heaven to raise their hands. 5,000 hands go up. 5,000 saved. Next night repeat for a total of 10,000 saved. Were folks in the first night present at the second, which calls for double counting? Does wanting to go to heaven make it so?

    Anyway, BFI is not exclusionary, though he is pentecostal. (I do get annoyed when he insits on praying in the future tense). Any group that does not exclude Catholics from being Christians is more open than most other groups.

  4. A church (or person) can be "charismatic" without being Pentecostal. AG and CoC are Pentecostal.

    Pentecostalism is a threat because of its pervasiveness.

    so shouldn’t the Evangelical ‘whatever improves my relationship with Jesus’ be lumped next to Pentacostalism? haven't seen much of that here...

    Any group that does not exclude Catholics from being Christians is more open than most other groups.

    for the record, I don't (across the board) consider Roman Catholics from being Christians. There are several that I know, and/or know of that I believe everybody has good reason to question their salvation. I also know Protestants in the same boat.

    Here are a few websites for you to poke around... (look for the "Trinity" in their statement of faith - it isn't there) (watch the videos on the left sidebar)

    When these people become mainstream (and they are becoming mainstream), even the Trinity becomes optional. That as much as anything else, makes them dangerous.

  5. When these people become mainstream (and they are becoming mainstream), even the Trinity becomes optional. That as much as anything else, makes them dangerous.

    Amen there. Tinkering with the Trinity makes one not Christian. I fear the next great heresy will be a return to universalist-Gnosticism. I am suprised a 'Church or Jesus Christ Gnostic' has not yet opened.

  6. I have heard of the Montanists - I know that there's somewhat of a parallel and that there are some who refer to today's Pentecostals as "neo-Montanists".

    Bob Jones recently spoke at the church I just left. Yes, it is scary.

    I believe that what makes these people more dangerous is that they are accepted as "mainstream".

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments links could be nofollow free.