Rumbling Rumors
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Rumbling Rumors Nehemiah 6:1-19. Paul J. Bucknell. Observe & learn. When good is being done, troubles will often develop. A pattern in life. Troubles Multiply. Empowering Nehemiah Ch. 1-2. }. Disgust with his plans (2:10) Mocked & despised (2:19) Furious & angry (4:1)

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Rumbling Rumors Nehemiah 6:1-19

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Rumbling rumors nehemiah 6 1 19

Rumbling Rumors

Nehemiah 6:1-19

  • Paul J. Bucknell


Observe learn

Observe & learn

When good is being done, troubles will often develop.

A pattern in life


Troubles multiply

Troubles Multiply

Empowering NehemiahCh. 1-2

}

  • Disgust with his plans (2:10)

  • Mocked & despised (2:19)

  • Furious & angry (4:1)

  • Conspired to come (4:8)

  • Oppression from within (5:7)

  • Rumors\deceit (6:2,7,14,19)

“The good hand of the Lord was upon me” (2:8)


Nehemiah 6 1 2

  • good

  • bad

Nehemiah 6:1-2

“Now it came about when it was reported to Sanballat, Tobiah, to Geshem the Arab, and to the rest of our enemies that I had rebuilt the wall, and that no breach remained in it, although at that time I had not set up the doors in the gates, 2 that Sanballat and Geshem sent a message to me, saying, “Come, let us meet together at Chephirim in the plain of Ono.” But they were planning to harm me” (Nehemiah 6:1-2).


Overview of nehemiah 6 1 14

Overview of Nehemiah 6:1-14

At - tempts

A) Observe ‘Good’ Troubles

Point out ways the evil one attempts to frustrate God’s work among the Lord’s people

B) Persist Doing Good

Identify seven ways God’s people are to overcome such frustrations


A observe good troubles

A) Observe ‘Good’ Troubles

  • Pressure (6:2-3) - “They were planning to harm me.”

  • Irritation (6:4) - “Four times in this manner”

  • Rumor (6:5-19)

    • A rumor is a slanderous suggestion that entices people to doubt a person’s good intentions.


Nehemiah 6 3 7

Nehemiah 6:3-7

“So I sent messengers to them, saying, “I am doing a great work and I cannot come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and come down to you? And they sent messages to me four times in this manner, and I answered them in the same way. 5 Then Sanballat sent his servant to me in the same manner a fifth time with an open letter in his hand. 6 In it was written, “It is reported among the nations, and Gashmu says, that you and the Jews are planning to rebel; therefore you are rebuilding the wall. And you are to be their king, according to these reports. 7 “And you have also appointed prophets to proclaim in Jerusalem concerning you, ‘A king is in Judah!’ And now it will be reported to the king according to these reports. So come now, let us take counsel together”” (Nehemiah 6:3-7).


Nehemiah 6 8 10

Nehemiah 6:8-10

“Then I sent a message to him saying, “Such things as you are saying have not been done, but you are inventing them in your own mind. For all of them were trying to frighten us, thinking, “They will become discouraged with the work and it will not be done.” But now, O God, strengthen my hands. 10 And when I entered the house of Shemaiah the son of Delaiah, son of Mehetabel, who was confined at home, he said, “Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple, and let us close the doors of the temple, for they are coming to kill you, and they are coming to kill you at night.” (Nehemiah 6:8-10).


Nehemiah 6 11 14

Nehemiah 6:11-14

“11 But I said, “Should a man like me flee? And could one such as I go into the temple to save his life? I will not go in.” 12 Then I perceived that surely God had not sent him, but he uttered his prophecy against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him. 13 He was hired for this reason, that I might become frightened and act accordingly and sin, so that they might have an evil report in order that they could reproach me. 14 Remember, O my God, Tobiah and Sanballat according to these works of theirs, and also Noadiah the prophetess and the rest of the prophets who were trying to frighten me.”” (Nehemiah 6:11-14).


Rumor s destructive path 6 6 7

Spread false report

Have people believe wrong things

Create division in ranks by fear

Make wrong decision

Rumor’s Destructive Path (6:6-7)

Open letter (6:5)

False report (6:6-7)

Induce fear (6:9)

Create lies (6:10)


Temptation s pathway nehemiah 6 13

Temptation’s Pathway (Nehemiah 6:13)

Hired

Frightened

Wrong decision

Sin

Evil report

Trap Nehemiah


B persist doing good

Task

Challenge

Rebuild wall, community & worship

Persist, endure, complete our part

B) Persist Doing Good

7


1 rumors catch us off guard 1 2

#1) Rumors catch us off guard (1-2)

“When it was reported to Sanballat Tobiah, to Geshem, the Aram, and to the rest of our enemies” (Neh 6:1).

  • Enemies hear

  • They will interrupt God’s good work

  • Don’t be surprised

  • Build resolve

Clarify goals & values


2 rumors come not from friends 2

#2) Rumors come not from friends (2)

“Sanballat and Geshem sent a message to me... They were planning to harm me” (Neh 6:2).

  • Our true friends are not those that harm us

  • Might have been in the past

  • Satan uses them (e.g.Job) - don’t be his pawn

  • Reduce emotional involvement

Identify their purpose


3 rumors are distracting 3

#3) Rumors are distracting (3)

“I am doing a great work and I cannot come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and come down to you?” (Nehemiah 6:3).

  • Rumors & threats by nature are distracting

  • Our goal is twofold

    • Work equally hard at the goal

    • Minimize and avoid distraction

Persist in our ‘great’ work


4 rumors take up lots of time 4

#4) Rumors take up lots of time (4)

“They sent messages to me four times in this manner, and I answered them in the same way” (Neh 6:3).

  • This is similar to previous point

  • We need to persist as much as the enemy does

  • Distraction means ensnarement.

    • “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” (Philippians 4:6).

Refuse to engage in defense


5 rumors often get worse 5 8

#5) Rumors often get worse (5-8)

“...A fifth time with an open letter..planning to rebel, be their king, appointed prophets... So come now let us take counsel together” (Nehemiah 6:5-7).

  • Just when you think things can’t get worse

  • A whole slew of lies (rebellion, devious, self-ambition, employed prophets, etc.)

  • Hard to defend (especially if hired a prophet)

  • A simple defense is best

God’s grace is sufficient


6 rumors disillusion others 9

#6) Rumors disillusion others (9)

“For all of them were trying to frighten us, thinking, “They will become discouraged with the work and it will not be done.” “But now, O God, strengthen my hands.” (6:9).

  • Thinks are extra difficult when others hear ‘us’

  • They can doubt one’s integrity

  • They can add pressure to compromise

  • Nehemiah prayed

Pray, only God can help


7 rumors distort matters 10 14

#7) Rumors distort matters (10-14)

“Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple, ... For they are coming to kill you” (6:10).

  • Pressure increases

  • Others warn, dangers increase, life endangered

  • Easy to make wrong decisions

  • Kept praying

  • Nehemiah kept focused - they were frightened

Carefuly discern the situation


Summary

Summary

  • God’s works and workers are often attacked

  • Stay focused on our ‘great’ work

  • Simple defense is best

  • Pray when things are desperate

  • Entrust God with the whole scene

“The LORD sat as King at the flood; Yes, the LORD sits as King forever. The LORD will give strength to His people; The LORD will bless His people with peace” (Ps 29:10-11).


Application

Application

  • Is Satan using you through gossiping and making rumors? We must cease!

  • Is there any task God has given you that you feel pressure to compromise or give up? Why?

  • Be people of integrity. Clarify God’s purpose and calling in your life. Follow through.

  • Don’t question doing the right thing. Not ‘What if...?’ but focus on ‘What does God want?’

  • Hard times become God’s special places where He displays His power and grace to you.


Rumbling rumors nehemiah 6 1 19

Rumbling Rumors

Nehemiah 6:1-19


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