Book of Nehemiah
"The Wall, External Disorders Overcome."
Bible Study is written by Roger Christopherson, and it's
Though Nehemiah appears to be a new book, in the manuscripts Ezra and Nehemiah are given as the same book, and were read at the meetings as one unit. The meaning of the word "Nehemiah" in the Hebrew tongue is "the comforter of Jehovah". As is pointed out in the "Companion Bible" Nehemiah, and the construction of the wall by him, was started prior to the starting of the building of the Temple.
Ezra was a Levite priest and a scribe, and Nehemiah was of the tribe of Judah, and his duties in the eyes of God, was to rebuild the streets and walls of Jerusalem. The presentation of these two books of Ezra and Nehemiah were placed prior to the Psalm of David, and the book of Job, however they mark the very last events that occurred in the Old Testament before the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. The time period is about four hundred and ten years before Christ would walk on the earth, and there is no writing that occur in the Bible after these books were written, aside from the Apocrypha, and secular writings such as Josephus.
There is a spiritual application to this book of Nehemiah, for we know that the building of the wall symbolizes God's protection given to each of His elect, and the walls or barriers of protection that He builds for the protection of His own. We know that in this dispensation, or period we call "the period of Grace", God has given us "The Comforter" of His Holy Spirit to be our "comforter". Each of the gates of the wall are also symbols with spiritual meanings.
This being the last generation, and I say this because of the establishing of the tiny state of Israel, and the return of the "good and bad figs" [the Jews] to Jerusalem, and also the prophecies that are now being fulfilled; it is time for each of us to recognize the walls that Christ is building around each of his own for their protection. Because of this we will start the Book of Nehemiah with a reading from the Book of Zechariah
Zechariah 2:1 "I lifted up mine eyes again, and looked, and behold a man with a measuring line in his hand."
Zechariah 2:2 "Then said I, "Whither goest thou?" And he said unto me, "To measure Jerusalem, to see what is the breadth thereof, and what is the length thereof."
That is to measure the length and width of the wall of Jerusalem.
Zechariah 2:3 "And, behold, the angel that talked with me went forth, and another angel went out to meet him,"
Notice the angelic message being delivered straight from God, concerning Jerusalem.
Zechariah 2:4 "And said unto him, "Run, speak to this young man, saying, "Jerusalem shall be inhabited as towns without walls for the multitude of men and cattle therein:"
In other words, there are going to be so many people that come to this city of peace that the walls will not be able to hold them.
Zechariah 2:5 "For I, saith the Lord, will be unto her a wall of fire round about, and will be the glory in the midst of her,"
The reason that Nehemiah can be the comforter of God, is that God is our wall. It was in Nehemiah's obligation to put that wall into place, and in the character of Nehemiah we can learn to speak to our Heavenly Father, and please him, and pray. Nehemiah knew how to please God.
As we see even at the end of the Millennium period, as recorded in Revelation 20: 7-9, when Satan is released for a short period, he and his followers will come again against Jerusalem. God will then also come down as a ring of fire and circle Jerusalem, and devour them. This will mark the end of that earth age, and will bring on the destruction of all evil into the lake of fire, and then the new Heaven and new earth will be brought down, and the old will be done away with.
God is building a wall around each of His elect today, to protect them and their minds against the deceptions that will cover the entire earth when the devil, Satan rules over his religious kingdom, as the Antichrist, when this current political system dies, and receives it's mortal head wound. That wall that is around you is God and His Holy Spirit, and that wall will guide, protect and counsels those He loves. That will be our protection during the short reign of Satan, as the seals of deception are opened and come forth. That wall of God, is the seal that is referred to as having the seal [understanding] in your mind [Revelation 9:4].
Nehemiah 1:1 "The word of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah. And it came to pass in the month Chisleu, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the palace,"
This is prior to the event of Ezra, and Zerubabbel going forth to Jerusalem.
Nehemiah 1:2 "That Hanani, one of my brethren, came, he and certain men of Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews that had escaped, which were left of the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem."
Nehemiah is not talking about Ezra and his group that returned, but the reference is to Jeremiah 44:13, 14, and Jeremiah 24 where it is written about the two fig baskets [the good and the bad figs] going back to Jersusalem. This is part of the "parable of the fig tree" that Jesus Christ told us to learn, in Matthew 24:32. It speaks of the inhabitance that escaped, but they were not all of Judah, because of the Kenites and the Nethinims that had been brought in against God's will, and become part of them. These are the ones that are called the "inhabitance" that escaped.
This is God way to warn us to be very careful. This is why Christ, in Revelation 2:9, and 3:9, loved the churches of Smyrna and Philadelphia. Because they knew "the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the the synagogue of Satan." They knew who the Kenites are by their words and their actions, and they were not deceived by them, into following their traditions of men. Be careful and alert of these people, for they will sound so good, yet they will lead you into Satan's camp. We are to know the times and the signs from our Bible, and not rely on the traditional thought to lead us.
Nehemiah 1:3 "And they said unto me, "The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the Province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire."
Jerusalem is left in ruin here, some seventy years after the "House of Judah" defiled God, and their walls, the Temple and the city were destroyed by king Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. Their sins and turning from God is what brought that wall down, and today your wall can be destroyed by your own neglect, and turning away from God, not studying His word, and listening to the traditions of men. God will not bring the wall down, but is will be in your hands if that wall stands.
Nehemiah 1:4 "And it came to pass, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned certain days, and fasted, and prayed before the God of heaven,"
There was a big difference between Ezra and Nehemiah as to how they reacted when hearing of bad news. When Ezra heard of the abominations committed by God's people, he got upset, jerked his hair out and became a bloody mess. He put on sack cloth and went to the center of town so everyone could see the terrible mess he was in. However here we see Nehemiah's gentle approach, and this is prayer comes years before the times of either Ezra, or Zerubabbel journeys from Babylon to Jerusalem.
Nehemiah 1:5 "And said, "I beseech thee, O Lord God of heaven, the great and terrible God, That keepeth covenant and mercy for them that love Him and observe His commandments:"
The word "terrible God" in the original Hebrew test is "amazing God". Did you catch that? God has conditions upon his love. The condition for those that love God, are those that "observe His commandments". God's Covenant and mercy is extended to those that love God, and keep His covenant [commandments].
Nehemiah 1:6 "Let Thine ear now be attentive, and Thine eyes open, that Thou mayest hear the prayer of Thy servant, which I pray before Thee now, day and night, for the children of Israel Thy servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel, which we have sinned against Thee: both I and my father's house have sinned."
Nehemiah prayer is continual, not just at the dinner table, or before he went to bed, but continual. His prayer was not selfish, and just for himself, he was out for his people, and for the forgiveness of their sins also. Confession and Repentance are the words that our Lord is waiting to hear from our own lips. Hearing the repentive heart, acknowledge their sin, and then turn from their sinful ways, is the only thing that will bring you back to the Father. With repentance comes forgiveness, and the breaking of all barriers between us and God.
A sin committed in ignorance is no sin, after the fact, but when it is recognized in your mind as against the commandments of God, then repent of it, and go in peace and turn it over to God. That sin is blotted out form God's record, even though Satan would try to keep you in bondage to it. None of us are perfect, for all mankind have sinned, and sin after the fact can only be corrected through confession and repentance by each of us, to our Heavenly Father. You do not have to make a public spectacle of it, but in the confines of your private room, tell God of your sin, and repent of it to Him.
Nehemiah's prayer was for the sins that not only the nation of "the house of Judah" did, but as was carried out in the homes of his forefathers. They turned against God commandments, and allowed heathen gods to have a place in their homes.
Nehemiah 1:7 "We have dealt very corruptly against Thee, and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the judgments, which Thou commandedst Thy servant Moses."
The law has never been changed, but there are statutes and ordinances included in the law that are fulfilled. Those parts are some of the ritual sacrifices, and blood sacrifices that were done away with, and the daily oblation, were by the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary. Christ was sacrificed for all person, and the sins of those that will accept that sacrifice.
The commandment that Nehemiah is repenting are the moral commandments, The statutes are the ritual form that God required, including the forbidding of the Kenite and Nethinims from entering into the holy places of the Temple, and doing the work of the Levitical priests. Nehemiah is confessing that his people had broke them all.
Nehemiah 1:8 "Remember, I beseech Thee, the word that Thou commandedst Thy servant Moses, saying, "If ye transgress, I will scatter you abroad among the nations:"
This word "nations" is Gentiles" in the Hebrew text. When you sin and go against God's commandments, you will get all mixed up amongst the Gentile peoples. This has happened. They came to the point where they had so little control of themselves, in respect to their behavior that God threw the whole batch into the Gentile world, and mixed them up real good.
At first the "House of Israel" was scattered by the Assyrian army, and mixed to the point that today the House of Israel don't even know who they are. Then Babylon mixed up the House of Judah to the point that when they returned out of Babylon, over half of the people calling themselves of Judah, were Nethinims, and heathen Kenites mixed amongst the true house of Judah. Even to this day, the Kenites declare themselves to be of Judah, and of God, and the Christian world simply doesn't know the difference.
Nehemiah 1:9"But if ye turn unto Me, and keep My commandments, and do them though there were of you cast out unto the uttermost part of the heaven, yet will I gather them from thence, and will bring them unto the place that I have chosen to set My name there."
"But if you return unto me," would be the correct writing. This is a national repentance condition. You might repent and be brought back, however as an national repentance this will not take place until the Millennium age, for shortly the entire world, including the Christ world, all that is except God's elect will bow down to Satan. The Christians that do this will do it in ignorance, for they have been taught to do so by the Kenites and their traditions.
When this happens to the world, God's wall will still be there for you, to protect your mind, and give you understanding that you would not be deceived.
As far as all Israel, all tribes repenting at the same time, it simply will not happen in this flesh age, for the majority Israel still think they are Gentile. They don't believe they are of Israel, and they even take the heathen, Kenite and others claiming to be of Israel, and apply the words of God to them, instead of themselves.
Nehemiah 1:10 "Now these are Thy servants and Thy People, whom Thou hast redeemed by Thy great power, and by Thy strong hand."
Nehemiah 1:11 "O Lord, I beseech Thee, let now Thine ear be attentive to the prayer of Thy servant, and to the prayer of thy servants, who desire to fear Thy name: and prosper, I pray Thee, Thy servant this day, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man" For I was the cupbearer."
"To fear Thy Name", would be better translated "revere Thy Name". To respect to the point that they obey the word, and love to the point that they want to please the Father.
Notice that in this prayer there is no self gratification, and begging for prosperity and world things for himself, but the whole prayer is for his people to see the truth of Gods Word, and come to that truth as part of their lives.
Nehemiah was the type of
person that everyone liked, and even though he was in captivity, the
last sentence shows us that he was also prosperous. He was the kings
cupbearer, which was someone that was so close to the king, that
everything that the king ate or drank had to pass approval by the
cupbearer. He was the most trusted man in the kingdom, for the very
life of the king was in the hand of the cupbearer.
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