Perseverance: “Persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.”
Nehemiah is a book of the Bible that gets overlooked too often. As I was reading through it recently the story of Nehemiah and the other Jews rebuilding the wall around Jerusalem really struck me. I don’t have room to type all of Nehemiah 1-6 here, but take the time to read it for yourself. In this post I will be pulling out portions of these chapters and focusing on the incredible perseverance of these Jews.
When Nehemiah, who was a captive in Babylon, heard that the walls of his homeland, Jerusalem, were destroyed, he was very distressed. So he asked permission from the king of Babylon to go rebuild the walls. The king agreed and so Nehemiah and many other Jews went to build, never expecting to face so much opposition.
Let me insert here that no matter what we’re doing doing for the kingdom of God, there will always be someone opposing us. That is why we have to learn to persevere.
Back to Nehemiah. Chapter 4, verse 4 says, “Hear, O out God; for we are despised: and turn their reproach upon their own head, and give them for a prey in the land of captivity.”
Persevering is not something we can do on our own. We must call on the Lord for help. We are New Testament Christians, so this is our armor. Jesus teaches us to be non-resistant, but that doesn’t mean we are left on our own. Read Ephesians 6:13-18 to learn more about the armor God has given to His children.
All throughout chapters 4-6 of Nehemiah we read about the intense opposition from Jerusalem’s neighboring nations. These men literally wanted to kill Nehemiah. But he had the Lord on his side, so he was able to persevere and continue building.
Nehemiah 4:14, 17-18
“And I looked, and rose up, and said unto the nobles, and to the rulers, and to the rest of the people, Be not afraid or them: remember the Lord, which is great and terrible, and fight for your brethren, your sons, and your daughters, your wives, and your houses. They which builded the wall, with one of his hands wrought in the work, and with the other hand held a weapon. For the builders, every one had his sword girded by his side and so builded.”
This is perseverance! There were people physically opposing the builders. But the Jews didn’t stop to fight, they just continued working with a tool in one hand and a sword in the other. Now, this isn’t following Jesus’ New Testament teachings, but do follow their example of perseverance. Keep going! Don’t stop working for the Lord as soon as things get tough and people oppose you. If you keep reading in Nehemiah, you’ll see that the Jews did finish the wall. You will survive too. With the Lord’s help, you too can persevere.
Written by Ginger