Nehemiah: Rise and Build-Week 1

January 14, 2024 Preacher: Phil Courson Series: Nehemia

Topic: Nehemia Scripture: Nehemiah 1

Nehemiah: Rise and Build
Sunday, January 14, 2024

Nehemiah 1:1-11
Introduction
During times of difficulty, turn to prayer and the character of God
Nehemiah’s name means ‘Yahweh comforts’ and he is the famous cup-bearer
who never appears in Scripture outside of this book.
“Nehemiah is a visible reminder to the Israelite people of the unchanging mercy
of God. Life has changed for them, and some of the treasured institutions were
no more, but the Lord was with them, raising up new people to refine and
invigorate the vulnerable community. A trusted wine steward in a pagan palace
becomes God’s instrument for Israel’s renewal.” R. Brown
I. Nehemiah’s News (v.1-3)
The month of Chislev – late November/early December!
It is the 20 th year of the reign of Artaxerxes and they are in Susa which is the
winter capital of Artaxerxes. The main Persian capital at this time was Persepolis.
The Persian Empire was MASSIVE! Over 127 provinces (Esther 1:1,2) and
Darius the Great would be the most recognizable king.
The news that Nehemiah received probably was of the Jews unsuccessful
attempts to rebuild Jerusalem’s wall in 458 BC (Ezra 4:23).
II. Nehemiah’s Prayer (v.4-11)
Review that history and think of the despondency of the people and imagine
yourself coming in to lead this challenge.
The first thing Nehemiah turns to is the Yahweh! This is the first of 9 prayers that
he prays. Nehemiah was a man committed to prayer!
His prayers are very natural, and some are immediate and others just
spontaneous. You can see he turned instinctively towards God. He cast his
anxieties and cares upon God. Prayer should always be our first resort!
v.6 - “I pray before you day and night…” He was a man persistent in prayer!
“God shapes the world by prayer. The prayers of God’s saints are the capitol
stock of heaven by which God carries on His great work upon the earth.” E.M.
Bounds

III. Nehemiah’s Confession (v.6-9)
During Nehemiah’s prayer there is time for confession of sin. Nehemiah is honest
with God about the people’s sin but his father and his own sin as well.
Nehemiah doesn’t separate himself from the people of God but realizes that he is
part of the overall picture. He could have been bitter because their sin led to
captivity which he is a part of and never has been to Jerusalem.
Nehemiah is very real about what has taken place both in the past and now in
the present.
IV. Nehemiah’s Confidence (v.10-11)
Nehemiah’s confidence was in God and His Word or Promises! Nehemiah knew
that there was nothing he could do to change the king’s heart but knew that
Yahweh could change it.
Nehemiah knew that the Persian king was nothing more than a mere man!
“The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it
wherever he will.” Proverbs 21:1
v.10 – “whom you have redeemed by your great power and strong hand.”
V. Conclusion
“The church is looking for better methods; God is looking for better men …. What
the Church needs today is not more machinery or new organizations or more
novel methods, but men whom the Holy Spirit can use - men of prayer, men
mighty in prayer. The Holy Spirit does not flow through methods, but through
men … He anoints not plans, but men, men of prayer” (E M Bounds).
“Like many since his time, Nehemiah’s greatness came from asking great things
of a great God and attempting great things in reliance on him.” M. Breneman

More in Nehemia

February 18, 2024

Nehemiah: Rise and Build-Week 4-Sermon Only

February 11, 2024

Nehemiah: Rise and Build-Week 3

January 21, 2024

Nehemiah: Rise and Build-Week 2