“They were all trying to frighten us, thinking, ‘Their hands will get too weak for the work, and it will not be completed.’ But I prayed, ‘Now strengthen my hands.’”

Nehemiah 6:9
From the earliest ages, we learn how to recognize a trap. When you were young, if a group of big kids called to you from behind the school, telling you they want to talk with you, you would quickly decline. Nehemiah was not so easily duped either. He knew that his enemies were calling out to him in order to do him harm (v. 2). 

What could be the harm in going out to meet them? They just wanted to talk, right? When Nehemiah refused, they tried coaxing him with threats. They claimed that Nehemiah was trying to set himself up as a ruler and rebel against King Artaxerxes! If the “true” king finds out about this, he will both stop the work and crush Nehemiah and the rest of the remnant. So, they proposed, shouldn’t Nehemiah work out a deal? 

Temptations are dangerous because they are clever—as is Satan, the source of temptation. The offer often sounds plausible, which is why we must imitate Nehemiah in remembering our primary calling. Who are we in Christ? In light of the gospel, what has He called us to with our lives? Whose glory do we seek?

Scripture Focus

Nehemiah 6:1-9


The best way to resist the clever, alluring voice of temptation is by returning to the Word of God in prayer.

Bible In A Year

  • 2 Samuel 3-4
  • Psalm 137
  • Ephesians 5-6

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