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[thoughts] Victorious Though Persecuted (July 7-13, 2003)

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  • Mark Roth
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    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 8, 2003
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      I have no control over and hereby disclaim ads/links above.
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      If you're going to buy at eBay or Amazon.com,
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      VICTORIOUS THOUGH PERSECUTED
      (Nehemiah 6:1-9, 15, 16)


      THE BATTLE IS ON

      Did you know that?

      It's true! No good we set out to do will go unopposed. All around
      us exist adversaries, most of whom we cannot see, who will do all
      they can to resist us personally and impede any good our hearts
      determine to accomplish. These enemies will attack and undermine.
      They will try to discourage, distract, and dissuade us. They will
      not give up easily, refusing to give in just because one tactic
      fails.

      Did you know that?

      It's true! Yet so many Christians seem caught by surprise at the
      opposition, having neither expected it nor planned for it. They
      allow distractions to draw them away from their rightful endeavors.
      They permit discouragement to lead them to giving up the noble
      project. They let down their guard and too late discover they have
      been lured into an ambush. Being spiritually and mentally
      unprepared, they quit before they finish, they fail before they
      succeed, and they lose before they win.

      Did you know that?

      It's true! So what are we going to do about it?

      Remember the importance of the task.
      When Nehemiah's enemies tried to lure him into a trap where
      they could bring mischief upon him, he began his response to their
      invitation by saying, "I am doing a great work" (Nehemiah 6:3). To
      that he added, "Why should the work cease?" He put his assigned
      task above anything else. He knew it was an important job. He also
      knew it was his duty, which meant that he was important to the
      success of the project. So he refused to consider giving in to the
      opposition of distraction -- "I cannot come down...to you."
      Nehemiah would not leave his work for something of less importance
      and of suspect character. We must learn from that. When any type of
      opposition comes, we need to remember the importance of the good
      task which God has given us.

      Maintain personal integrity.
      When guile and enticement failed, the enemies of Nehemiah
      assaulted his personal character. They attributed to him ungodly
      motives, purposes, and tactics. Then, having attacked his
      integrity, they pretended to be on his side, saying, "Come now
      therefore, and let us take counsel together" (Nehemiah 6:7).
      Because Nehemiah had carefully guarded his integrity and character,
      he saw through their plan. He not only knew that the accusations
      were false, he also knew that everyone else knew them for the
      fabrications they were. Since he had kept his heart right, he did
      not have to worry about his reputation. Can we learn from that as
      well? Beware of giving the enemy solid ground from which to attack
      us! We must keep a careful guard over our own character and
      integrity in all things. It is never right to allow wrong, no
      matter how small the issue. How foolish to breach our own
      integrity, especially with something "little"!

      Recognize human weakness and divine power.
      Nehemiah did not deny that "they all made us afraid" (Nehemiah
      6:8). He knew that as a result of that it was entirely possible
      that he and his crew would grow weary and quit before the work was
      done. So he turned again to the One who had given him the
      assignment in the first place: "Now therefore, O God, strengthen my
      hands." (Nehemiah 6:9). May we reject cocky self-assurance and
      independence. They will certainly guarantee our failure!




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