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Whenever God’s people say, “Let us rise and build,” the devil’s crowd always responds, “Let us arise and oppose.”  No work for God is ever accomplished without opposition. No church ever moves forward without obstacles. We see this in Nehemiah 4. It is determination that makes the difference. As the old sign, my football coach posted in the locker room read, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going!”

RECOGNIZE SATAN’S SNARES, (v. 9). They would watch and pray!  Scripture warns that prayer is spiritual warfare. Concerning the Devil, we are to know his “wiles,” (Eph. 6:11[strategies, ESV]). Recognize the snares he sets, “lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices,” (2 For. 2:11). Through discouragement, (v. 1-3); distraction, (v. 7-8); deficiency, (v. 10-11); debris, (v. 10b); defeatism, (v. 12); and distance, (v. 13, 19), the Wicked One set these snares to trap them and bring the work to a halt. Are you aware of Satan’s snares

REMEMBER GOD’S STRENGTH, (v. 14). If the Serpent cannot trap us, he will seek to terrify us.  We must choose fear or faith.

God’s power is available, (v. 4-5). Nehemiah did not try to overcome the enemy, but told God on them!  A little girl who had recently invited Christ into her heart was asked, “What do you do when the Devil comes knocking on your heart’s door?”  She replied, “I’ll turn to Jesus and say, ‘You answer the door!’”

God’s power is dependable, (v. 14-15). Remember the Lord!  He is the Almighty!  While you may be no match for the Devil, he is no match for God!

REMAIN GOD’S SERVANTS, (v. 6). Determine to remain faithful to God.  Have a mind to work like these did.

Don’t depend on past successes. Rejoice in the progress made, but do not rest until the project is finished.

Don’t despair at present challenges. The halfway point is hard when you realize how much more you must do.

Don’t divert from praying constantly, (v. 9). “Pray without ceasing,” is the command, (1 Thess. 5:17).

I have this written in my Bible:

Don't Quit

When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,

when the road you're trudging seems all uphill,

when the funds are low and the debts are high,

and you want to smile but you have to sigh,

when care is pressing you down a bit -

rest if you must, but don't you quit. 

Life is queer with its twists and turns.

As everyone of us sometimes learns.

And many a fellow turns about

when he might have won had he stuck it out.

Don't give up though the pace seems slow -

you may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than

it seems to a faint and faltering man;

Often the struggler has given up

when he might have captured the victor's cup;

and he learned too late when the night came down,

how close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out -

the silver tint of the clouds of doubt,

and when you never can tell how close you are,

it may be near when it seems afar;

so stick to the fight when you're hardest hit -

it's when things seem worst, you must not quit.

(author unknown)

Yours for Building and Battling,

Dennis Thurman, AMS

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