Rebuilding the Walls (Part 1, Recognizing the Need)
Junior Level

We begin this week, by the help of God, a study in His word, in the book of Nehemiah.  Nehemiah was a man who was chosen by God to do a great work that had been neglected for many years in Jerusalem.  Nehemiah was a man of God and a man of action.  He saw a need and he prayed to God for a solution and then he acted.  Through great opposition Nehemiah set out to rebuild the walls around the city of Jerusalem, a task that had gone undone for 90 years after the people returned to Jerusalem after being taken into captivity and enslaved in Babylon for many years.  In this study we will see how God was with Nehemiah and the people as they began to rebuild the walls around the city, and how what seemed impossible with man, was very possible with God.  It is my prayer that we can take the lessons we learn from Nehemiah, and apply them to our own lives seeing just how important it is to keep the walls strong around ourselves so that the enemy cannot defeat us.  We are children of God!  It is time to rebuild and make strong the things that have been worn down and made weak.  Through Christ we can do all things!

Handout: Rebuilding the Walls

Teacher's Guide: Rebuilding the Walls

Rebuilding the Walls (Part 1, Recognizing the Need)
We begin this week, by the help of God, a study in His word, in the book of Nehemiah.  Nehemiah was a man who was chosen by God to do a great work that had been neglected for many years in Jerusalem.  Nehemiah was a man of God and a man of action.  He saw a need and he prayed to God for a solution and then he acted.  Through great opposition Nehemiah set out to rebuild the walls around the city of Jerusalem, a task that had gone undone for 90 years after the people returned to Jerusalem after being taken into captivity and enslaved in Babylon for many years.  In this study we will see how God was with Nehemiah and the people as they began to rebuild the walls around the city, and how what seemed impossible with man, was very possible with God.  It is my prayer that we can take the lessons we learn from Nehemiah, and apply them to our own lives seeing just how important it is to keep the walls strong around ourselves so that the enemy cannot defeat us.  We are children of God!  It is time to rebuild and make strong the things that have been worn down and made weak.  Through Christ we can do all things!
Handout: Rebuilding the Walls
Teacher's Guide: Rebuilding the Walls
A. Recognizing the Need
Nehemiah 1:1-4 “The words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah. And it came to pass in the month Chisleu, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the palace, 2That Hanani, one of my brethren, came, he and certain men of Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews that had escaped, which were left of the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem. 3And they said unto me, The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire.  4And it came to pass, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned certain days, and fasted, and prayed before the God of heaven,”

The book of Nehemiah gives us tremendous insight into the Biblical principles of re-building that which has been broken down. Nehemiah is a book of history. God's people had just spent 70 years in Babylon as slaves. 50 thousand had returned to Jerusalem to begin life there again.  They met with great opposition as they began to build the Temple again.  They laid the foundation, then they stopped and began to settle into their own homes and they forgot about what God wanted built.
Haggai 1:1-8 “1In the second year of Darius the king, in the sixth month, in the first day of the month, came the word of the LORD by Haggai the prophet unto Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest, saying, 2Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, This people say, The time is not come, the time that the LORD's house should be built.  3Then came the word of the LORD by Haggai the prophet, saying, 4Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled houses, and this house lie waste?  5Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways.  6Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.  7Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways.  8Go up to the mountain, and bring wood, and build the house; and I will take pleasure in it, and I will be glorified, saith the LORD.”
At the time of Nehemiah, it has been more than 90 years since the first group returned from slavery in Babylon and built the foundation for the Temple; the walls around Jerusalem remained desolate. 
The walls around a city represented strength and protection. So without the walls built up, the people were very much at risk on every side of attack from their enemies once again as in the past and they were a mockery of sorts to everyone around them.  God needed someone who would be willing to get involved and to stand and build up these walls.  It would take much hard work and dedication and the man God chose to do that was Nehemiah.
When Nehemiah heard about the condition of Jerusalem and the walls, he was heartbroken.  He began to call out to God about what to do about this.  
Nehemiah 1:5-11 “5And said, I beseech thee, O LORD God of heaven, the great and terrible God, that keepeth covenant and mercy for them that love him and observe his commandments: 6Let thine ear now be attentive, and thine eyes open, that thou mayest hear the prayer of thy servant, which I pray before thee now, day and night, for the children of Israel thy servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel, which we have sinned against thee: both I and my father's house have sinned. 7We have dealt very corruptly against thee, and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the judgments, which thou commandedst thy servant Moses.  
8Remember, I beseech thee, the word that thou commandedst thy servant Moses, saying, If ye transgress, I will scatter you abroad among the nations: 9But if ye turn unto me, and keep my commandments, and do them; though there were of you cast out unto the uttermost part of the heaven, yet will I gather them from thence, and will bring them unto the place that I have chosen to set my name there. 10Now these are thy servants and thy people, whom thou hast redeemed by thy great power, and by thy strong hand. 11O LORD, I beseech thee, let now thine ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant, and to the prayer of thy servants, who desire to fear thy name: and prosper, I pray thee, thy servant this day, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man. For I was the king's cupbearer.”
Nehemiah saw the need for the walls to be rebuilt, he got on his face before God, and then he began to take action!  
Notice the order in which Nehemiah tackles this difficult task. First he saw the need, then he realized that something must be done so he got on his face before God and asked what he should do, then he obeyed.  He was very wise.
James 1:22 “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.”
Like Nehemiah, we must see the need in our own lives to have strong walls to protect us against the attacks from Satan and his demons.  Remember we learned that walls around a city represented strength and protection, well walls around our hearts, and minds represent the same for us who are born again.  Satan is our enemy and he is seeking whom he may devour. We who have accepted Christ, we are the Temple of God.  The Holy Spirit dwells in us.  
1 Corinthians 3:16 “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?”
Satan will attack the places in our lives that are weak.  The areas that do not have a wall built strong around them.  
1 Peter 5:8 “Be sober, be vigiliant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:”
Ephesians 6:12 “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
We MUST see the need for strong Spiritual walls of protection and we must get on our faces before God and seek Him about what to do, then we must OBEY!  
Proverbs 25:28 “28 He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls.”
Proverbs 25:28 “He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls.”
Proverbs 12:7 “The wicked are overthrown, and are not: but the house of the righteous man shall stand.”
Like Nehemiah recognized the great importance and need for physical walls around Jerusalem, we must recognize the need for Spiritual walls.  Then we need to ask God for guidance and obey His voice.  Through His word, He will help us to rebuild that which has been broken down.  He is our strength and our High Tower.  He can open our eyes to see the areas that we need to rebuild and strengthen so that we can be protected from the enemy who desires so much to lead us back into slavery of sin. 
In the next lesson, God willing, we will continue this series and we will begin on a journey with Nehemiah to rebuild the walls around our lives so that we can walk and remain in victory!  Praise You Lord!
Dear Righteous Heavenly Father,
I bow before You yet again in awe of who You are.  Father I thank You for Your word and for the examples that You have given us in it that help us to see what we need to do in order to live in the plans You have had for us before the foundations of the world!  Lord YOU ARE GOOD and today I worship You and I thank You for all the wonderful things that You have done and continue to do.  Lord I’m asking You today, to take this lesson and use it for Your glory and to help many around the world who will read and apply it to their own lives.  Father I ask that You bless and shine Your favor upon this ministry so that we can reach all the world with You and with the victory that comes through Christ and relationship with You.  Thank You for leading us and guiding us and help us to make strong the walls around this temple in which You live.  Thank You for Your great love, mercy, and grace.  Thank You for Jesus.  It is in His name that we bow before You today and always.  Amen.

~*Cindygirl*~
May 25, 2014