February 22, 2021
Now when I went into the house of Shemaiah the son of Delaiah, son of Mehetabel, who was confined to his home, he said, “Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple. Let us close the doors of the temple, for they are coming to kill you. They are coming to kill you by night.” Nehemiah 6:10 ESV
Sanballat was once again scheming to cause Nehemiah to stumble. Using fear tactics and false accusations, Sanballat hoped he could discredit Nehemiah by violating God’s law. To meet in the temple sanctuary to save one’s own life from an avenger would require Nehemiah to live there until the high priest died. Nehemiah promised to return to Artaxerxes. More importantly, he would have sinned against God by approaching the altar with a pagan. This would have discredited Nehemiah in front of his people. Confident of his mission and certain of his enemy’s tactics, Nehemiah refuted the messenger and stayed on course.
Father God, help us to be certain of our calling, that we might stay on course and complete the “good works that you have prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10).
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling