Thursday, February 22, 2018

Year 8, Day 53: Nehemiah 6

Theological Commentary: Click Here

Today we see one of the hardest kinds of opposition to resist: subterfuge.  In this story, we see subterfuge from the outside through Sanballat and his attempts to scare Nehemiah.  We see subterfuge from the inside as Sanballat gets to Shemaiah and pays him to set Nehemiah up.

The reality is that when we do anything important we should expect opposition.  Quite often, the more important it is the more likely the opposition will be hidden.  When we do something people care about, the opposition will often be subterfuge: wolves in sheep’s clothing.  That’s what Nehemiah faces.  He goes to someone who should be a friend for a little advice and he gets set-up.

Fortunately, Nehemiah is listening to God.  Nehemiah is a thinking man, using the wisdom that God has already given to him.  Nehemiah recognizes the set-up for what it is and calls Shemaiah on it.  He stays out of trouble because God is with Nehemiah.

Ultimately, this shows us the role of faith.  There is no way that we can keep ourselves from every pitfall.  But if we rely upon God, we can trust that either He will protect us from evil or deliver us out of it.  In Nehemiah’s case, God protects Nehemiah from it.  In plenty of other cases in the Bible, God delivers.  One way or another, faith allows us to step up in righteousness and know that evil will come our way.  We can step up because we have a God who is bigger than our enemies.