Introduction: The book of Nehemiah is about rebuilding the walls around Jerusalem. Chapter three narrates who did what in the rebuilding project. And verses 23, 26 talk about some men who rebuilt the areas around their houses and a group of unnamed “temple servants.”
1. Getting our houses together is important. Notice in vs. 23 that Benjamin, Hasshub (hash’-ubb), and Azariah essentially made repairs in the vicinity of their homes. Think about how fixing the wall for others, while the wall in front on your house is still down compares to the person who is a great church member and community advocate but a terrible spouse, parent, and friend.
Passages like Mark 12:29-31 and Matthew 7:3-5 support the need to minister to ourselves, so we can minister to others. Since the body is only as strong as the parts, we should give careful attention to taking care of our mindset, health, wealth, and relationships. Let’s live like we understand the importance of ministering to ourselves.
2. But we are still one body. Notice in vs. 23 that the parts of the wall made up the entire wall. Think about your section being disconnected from another section. In church, if we get worship together, but love is out of order, we still have a major problem. If we get evangelism together, but edification is out of order, we still have a major problem.
In our community, if we get education together, but employment opportunities are not in order, we still have a major problem. The same could be said about having jobs but lacking houses.
Passages like Romans 12:5 and Genesis 4:9 support the idea of how individuals are still connected to the whole. Let’s live like we understand that we are in this thing together. Such living should include working on ourselves and for the good of the whole.
3. People may never call our names. Notice in vs. 26 that there are a group of working people who are known only as “temple servants.” In like manner, you can do a great job with your personal stewardship, duties with your loved ones, and your responsibilities in church and community and people not call your name.
about how for every Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Fannie Lou Hammer there are
10,000’s of good people whose names are never called. Let’s be mindful that some names are called and some are not.
4. Serving the Lord should be our greatest motive. Notice in vs. 26 that the unnamed servants did their work. First, there are too many who hold hostage their participation/cooperation because they feel unloved or disrespected (see Emerson Eggerichs’ book, Love and Respect). Too many of our churches, families, and communities suffer from people who are unwilling to serve as a part of the “unnamed servants group.”
Second, if you are really serving the Lord because of the Lord then think about how the Lord is still great and worthy of our best. Since the Lord is still great, you should still be serving, even when you are disappointed with people.
Third, passages like Luke 16:15b, Hebrews 11:6, and Matthew 6:3-4 support the idea that whatever is not of faith and unto the Lord doesn’t count with the Lord. Let’s work on making sure that our motive for service is right.
5. God knows our names. Notice that passages like Matthew 20:14-15 and Revelation 21:4 support God knowing about your service and having plans to bless you. You should not allow the fact that people don’t call your name to make you miss out on the great blessings that God has for you, if you would simply stay faithful to Him.
God can bless you with peace, joy, and power right now. But the best is yet to come, when we are spending eternity with Him. Let’s live like we are really focused on serving the Lord. This should include faithfulness, in spite of what people do and don’t do.