As we are moving through some very troubled times, and troubled times are always the context of revival and major moves of the Lord throughout the Bible. Jesus came in a context of Roman occupation, of the decline of the faith of the Jews, false Messiahs. In all the Roman injustices inflicted on Judea, So when there is the greatest persecution, greatest political instability and war, you can bet there are praying people praying in a revolution from the heavenlines.
It seems that in the 1940’s Rees Howells engaged the 2nd world war with intercession, and in his book “The Intercessor” it cites the many spiritual battles that the UK and her allies undertook to defeat the Axis powers. It was not a easy war, and the UK was losing it at the beginning. It only turned when the intercessor engaged God in prayer.
This neatly brings me to the substance of Nehemiah 1, when we see Jerusalem burned with fire and demolished.
We are not sure if Nehemiah ever had opportunity to be in Jerusalem, but to hear about its demise, the miserable state of its people, the hunger, the Temple destroyed, walls demolished, gates burned with fire.
His first reaction is key to the whole book, he set to set aside 7 days of prayer, and what stirred him was the low state Jerusalem had been bought to by its people departing from the right way and breaking covenant with God.
Prayer unlocks opportunity
Nehemiah was strategically placed in the Palace of the Persian King. We know that the kings were predisposed to be favourable to the return of the Jews to their land. This was partly due to the action of Daniel in prayer in the land, and the prophetic ministry of Ezekiel. Nehemiah was the cupbearer, so he was placed directly serving the king. The king opened for Nehemiah opportunities, which his prayer for 7 days prepared for. Prayer unlocks not only responses from God, but wisdom to discern the opportunities that will come our way. As we were moved by the walls demolished, the identity, dignity and opportunity of God’s people had been severely curtailed. These 3 areas I believe are where we are now.
I believe we are living a similar scenario now, the walls of our faith have been demolished for various decades via apostasy, heresy, complacency and apathy. This is no recent thing going on. The Catholic Church in the 17th century warned about the dangers of humanism and rationalism which would spread all through the learned world. What happened is that God was replaced by humanism, and spirituality was replaced by rationality. The process, albeit very subtle and gradual has come almost to completion. Nature abhors a vacuum . So what is happening is a culmination of this agenda to replace a life in God with a pure humanistic, globalist world view, where God has no place. The outworking of this is outlawing faith.
The attitudes to opening places of worship in this quarantine based on faulty science, is a case in question as places of faith have been labelled as dangerous places for propagating the virus, and unnecessary to society.
All seems so plausible when fear has been drummed unto everyone . Now it is being revealed that the lockdowns were not effective and reckless as it was based upon advice from a scientific community that did not have a unified voice. Our identity as the people of God, was deprived from one of the major requirements of our faith, the power of assembly. Our dignity was also taken away as our right to prayer in houses of prayer was prohibited. And opportunity for advances in our vocation were severely interrupted.
The walls of our faith, our temple of our worship and our priesthood of our vocation are being restored…
The thing we need to do is to recognise the dangerous streams of tendencies that are abroad now. Some proponents of anti God philosophies are now making moves on shaping society against the Church. The dangerous proponents of a cashless society are steps away from bringing in a one world system which we know will be anti God and will persecute the Church. It will persecute because the Word of God is contrary to the pillar truths of this new society coming in.
The danger was that whilst Nehemiah had the favour of the king there were many enemies. Sanballat and Tobiah were masquerading being people of God but were those who would undermine ultimately the work of God. The walls of our faith can be fragile after 3 months which we can detect in the spiritual have changed forever, and we can see the mocking of these false believers. They will try to sway the authorities to prevent the Church moving forward. Those who will be strong speakers and influencers for the faith will come under increasing persecution.
Sanballat tried to persuade the government about the nature of God’s people, but the decreee of Cyrus broke that attempt. God even in this time will put His Kings in strategic places.
Our worship needs to move from being the “bless me” posture, to being Psalm 149 based, where kings and entities in this spiritual dimensions are shackled. Our praise and worship is no longer just a time to fill but a time to fulfil God’s plans. Our wakeup call is we must access our Kingly and priestly call so that we can be vessels that execute God’s judgment in the earth in favour of God’s last harvest.
I have no doubt we are at the “beginning of sorrows” and great wars are ahead, great politics and their ideologies are going to be demolished in favour of more sinister convictions. This must happen to precede the implantation of the Kingdom of God. The Temple was known for its intercession and its worship before the Glory. It is urgent we return to this model before satan takes advantage of the vacuum.
The motivation of this message is that as life is going back to somewhat normality, there is a sensation that this atmosphere of crisis is to be a constant background to our lives, to manipulate us to accept all kinds of legislation and I believe God is wanting to raise up Nehemiahs who can oversee the restoration of our faith, call for a revival of our worship, and call for a corporate identity even in the midst of our enemies. Psalm 23 says that God will lay a table, a covenant table in the midst of our enemies. It is time we make available that table for God to covenant with us now.
Nehemiah got the walls rebuilt in 52 days with a group of unified people. It is time to make the efforts for a corporate effort to rebuild, restore and refine our faith. We have little time, and we have no time to waste.
One thing that preaching has neglected is the reality, Jesus is returning and with this context all will be attempted to prevent this happening, whether it be by law, by finances or by health.
Rebuilding Jerusalem is not a choice it is connected to our eternal vision
As this section says Jerusalem is connected to our eternal citizenship, and Jerusalem, Zion is connected to the Church prophetically. Right now I am writing a book concerning those 12 foundations, which represent important substances which will transport us into our eternal estate. If we neglect this call to REBUILD now we will lose our eternal place, that is how I see how important is this season before us. May we take this opportunity for prayer, for opportunity, for unity, and for restoration. This season will not come again.