“His brother? Hmmmm…All these pastors and church leaders always turn everything into a family affair”. Most people would react this way. Jealousy mixed with ignorance and distrust.
Were you there with the pastor when he had his fiery trials as he tried to establish the work for which you now desire credit and recognition? Did you weep with him when people left the church, calling him all sorts of things except “man of God?” Did you spend the night all alone in your bed because your husband or wife was away on missionary assignment? Did your family miss your presence because you were so “carried away” with church work? If not, your jealousy is misplaced.
Do you realize that when God calls a man, he calls to work all that is in the man’s life, including members of his family? When God called Adam to work the garden, he sent his wife with him. When God called Abram to inherit a promise, he didn’t leave Sarai behind. Who was Moses’ vice president and who was the women’s leader in the “Wilderness Church of God?” Who ascended the throne of David to build the temple of God? Do you realize that James, the brother of Jesus, was one of the Central Executive Council Members of the Early Church”? or maybe you think it was a mistake that the book of Jude was included in the New Testament and it had nothing to do with the issue of him being the Lord’s brother.
If you have actually thought you deserved the right to take over after the founder and you didn’t notice all these connections, then the impact of your ignorance on the rest of us would have been alarmingly disastrous. It is a blessing just to know that the mantle didn’t fall on you.
And if you actually thought that pastor was a man of God, why do you query his judgement with such tones of distrust over his motives?
Those closest to the man of God always have a place in his heart … and in the plan of God.
With the help of God?
The whole story up to this point looks more like the people helped themselves. Yet their enemies were able to see that God helped them.
This is exactly how things of God always go; the people involved are just regular ordinary people who did regular ordinary things and, for the most part, didn’t feel any anointing while they did their bit. Everything appears so natural to these people who are actually part of the making of a miracle.
Sometimes, it takes outsiders for us to know that the glory of God is upon us. They always see it! (Isaiah 60:1-2)
Staying in the assignment God has given us is the safest place we can be. Being afraid for our lives usually opens us to death.
Nehemiah was unlike the other guys but very much like Paul (1 Corinthians 9). They both focused on the task at hand and considered God able to reward them. Paul said “woe is me if I don’t”, Nehemiah said “Bless me because I did” (13:14, 22, 29, 31).
These guys had legal backing for their business and that made them forget that they were dealing with humans, more so their own countrymen. How often we do this even today? We quickly forget how to be compassionate when we don’t have to be.
The effect of mockery wasn’t lost on Nehemiah, neither should we pretend we are not hurt by people’s cutting remarks when we do hurt. Pray about it!
The whole of chapter 4 is a classic setting for a basic principle: If you are not moving, you won’t get any resistance. Those who have nothing to defend usually have no enemies (proverbs 13:8 NLT). If you must do anything worthwhile, be prepared!
In contrast to Jedaiah son of Harumaph, the Reverend Eliashib took actions that cannot be mistaken for selfish interests. Probably, he sparked off this building cascade with his exemplary style (3:1). Good that he benefited from someone else’s labour and so his kindness was repaid. But then, it is not always so with men.