If It Pleases The King

If It Pleases The King

Nehemiah 2:1-20

Who was Artaxerxes?

It Doesn’t Matter Who You Work For, You Work For Jesus

Nehemiah had prayed, fasted, and wept for 3 months

  • Vs 5 – Rebuild the wall.  Nehemiah was not only asking the king for a favor, he was asking the king to overturn his own foreign policy, which we read about in Ezra 4.  He was asking the king to change his mind.  
  • Vs 6 – Paid Leave.  He didn’t just ask to leave Susa and the royal court, and to change his own foreign policy, The king asks, “how long are you going to be gone for?”  – he asks for 12 years off, paid leave.  How many of you can walk into your boss tomorrow and say, “hey I need some time off”, How much? ‘`12 years, ” Well let’s just make it 50. Enjoy your vacation! 
  • Vs 7-8 – Free Travel, Employees and Staff, He is asking for lumber from the King’s private forest.  private residence “I am going to need a place to live, buy me a house”  That is a big request from a slave to a king.

Matthew 10:28

Colossians 3:23-24

  • Does your life, your actions, your decisions, please the king?
  • Does your life, your actions, your decisions, please the king?
    • You serve Jesus Christ – and He is a far greater king than King ArtaxerxesHis kingdom is far larger, His influence far greater, His reign far longer, His army is far more powerful.  His word is more certain, His decrees are more absolute, his Land is more prosperous, his subjects are more devoted. His heart is more pure, His knowledge is more vast.  He is the king who reigns on high from before time began. Yet He did not send someone away to accomplish the needed task.  He came and did it himself.  He condescended, entered into an infant’s body, lived a pauper’s life, and died a criminal’s death, and rose again to prove that He rules over death itself. Your sins have been erased by His hand, your burdens are on His shoulders, Your future is secure in Him. He is the ultimate King. That is who you serve.
    • What will you do for your great king? Will your life be pleasing to Him?  He has a work for you. A calling, a purpose.  Can you see it? Are you in it? Are you faithful?  

Come Let Us Rebuild

  • Look at what is broken (The walls – 141 years, Decay, Destruction, Enemies, Israelites had given up, grown complacent, lazy
    • Individually – maybe for you, your heart is in shambles, your walls are crumbling, and your gates have been destroyed. You have no defense, and now, any sinful whim that crosses your path is able to run rampant within you.  Church, look at the trouble we are in! The temples we have built up are not temples to God, they are temples to Knowledge, to popularity, to a boy, or a girl.  Everything else is sacrificed on the altar of the pursuit of love… or lust.  
    • CorporatelyChurches are on the decline, people have failed to take God seriously and have stopped looking for answers in His word.  They seek their advice from horoscopes and tiktok. Christians have become blind to the reality of their situation.  
      • 86 churches close every week in America. 
      • Post Covid 1/3 of weekly attendance in churches have never returned. 
        • ⅓ of Corporate Christianity in America is GONE. 
    • Culturally –  Our culture is destroying the fabric of morality, destroying the structure of the family unit, destroying law and order and justice, destroying and radicalizing people against Christianity and God Himself!  Now more than ever something needs to be done.  We must rise and rebuild!
  • Individually
    • Own spiritual walk, You can’t expect to stay a spiritual infant and have a thriving relationship with God.  If you are going to church to get fed spiritually for the first time that week, you are not spiritually mature.  If you are still dependent on someone else for your spiritual meals, this is a sign of infancy.  Read your Bible! Learn theology! Build Community, Pray, Memorize Scripture, Build, Grow! 
      • Colossians 1:28-29 – Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ. 29 For this I toil, struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works within me.
  • Corporately
    • Every week, I get a call about how someone has been blessed by this church.  Every week, I hear stories about people who are having victory over sin, turning their lives around, living in Christian community, or getting saved.  We can’t fix every church, but through the power of God, and the grace of God, we can take this church and build it, strengthen it, and then multiply it!  
      • What would it look like for Celebration church to be a powerhouse on the western slope?  What would it look like for Celebration to plant 10 churches?  20? 100?  I was reading about a church last week that has planted 500 churches in 12 years. 
  • Culturally 
    • Nehemiah was a politically active believer.  He made petitions, wrote letters, spoke up for what he believed in. He advocated, and utilized all that he had in order to accomplish the mission God had for him.  Are you leveraging your resources for the Lord’s work?  Or are you leveraging your resources for less important purposesAre you living for something that is ultimately unsatisfying?  Some things are worth living for, some things are not.  Don’t waste your life. 

Sanballat and Tobiah




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