Rebuilding (Part 2): Serving With Our Status

(Nehemiah 3:8, Pas. Baines, Jr. 8/2017)

Introduction: The book of Nehemiah is about rebuilding the walls around Jerusalem. Chapter three narrates who did what in the rebuilding project. And verse 8 talks about the work of a gold smith and perfume maker.

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Key Points:

1. Our status does not exempt us from the work. As in Nehemiah 3:8, there is work/ministry/service for those with high status and those with low status. Ephesians 2:10 and John 15:1-5 are great supports for the idea that all saved people have a service to perform. None are too high, nor are any too low to serve.

Let’s find and perform our service for the Lord. We should look past our status and try to use our God given abilities to meet the needs that are around us.

2. The “talented tenth” should keep trying. The gold smith and perfume maker, in Nehemiah 3:8, may have fit into what Dr. W.E.B. Du Bois called the “talented tenth.” Some of the most talented people are tempted to leave the “common people” behind.

The Pastor advices the best and brightest to keep serving, because we owe those “common people” who sacrificed for us to be where we are. Even if we are accepted by others, we are still “other” (e.g., Black). And God is watching our stewardship.

If we cannot handle our blessings, God knows how to take them away (see Mt. 25:31-46). Let’s support the “talented tenth’s” staying with the work that needs to be done in our churches and communities.

3. The “90%” should be easier to get along with. Mark 6:4 talks about how the prophet has no honor in his town and family. There are too many in the “90%” who give the “talented tenth” an unnecessarily tough time.

The lack of respect and cooperation repulses too many of our best minds and talents. Too many project their insecurities onto the confidence of others.

If you have a poor self-image and see yourself as small then it is not strange that you would think everyone is looking down on you. Let’s work on getting along with one another, so we can do better as a people.

4. There is so much to do. As the people in Nehemiah 3 had so much work to do, there is so much work to do today. We need stronger people who can build stronger families, churches, and communities.

“Strong people” are people who have strong mindsets, health, wealth, relationships, and contributions. The family is strong when heterosexual marriages produce children who are raised to be disciples of Christ.

Churches are strong when they prioritize evangelizing the lost and edifying the saints God’s way. Our communities are strong, when they prioritize things like cultural love, political justice, and economic mercy.

Let’s do our part in building strong people who can build strong families, churches, and communities.

5. Not optional charity but essential. Passages like Romans 12:5 teaches that all of the body parts belong to the same body. Think about how without strong individuals, families, churches, and communities, our health, wealth, relationships, and contributions are all at risk. Weak and wicked people are subject to cause harm in our lives.

More importantly, God has not given too much for us to waddle in a state of “destroyed walls.” God has given us our various journeys, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.

He didn’t do all of that so we can be depressed, unnecessarily sick, unnecessarily broke, unnecessarily lonely, and dying with no legacy worth mentioning. Let’s do are part of rebuilding with urgency.

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