Sermon Notes 2015 01 18 PM

January 18, 2015 PM
Dr. Michael Catt – 1647
#3 in series

Nehemiah 2

The certainty of Nehemiah:

1) He knew God had ____________________________________________.

“Always remember there are only two kinds of people in this world – the realists and the dreamers. The realists know where they are going. The dreamers have already been there.” – Robert Orben

2) He knew God was ____________________________________________.

3) He knew life will _____________________________________________.

4) He knew the necessity of _______________________________________.

5) He established _______________________________________________.

The Bible is full of stories of tenacity:
  • Moses had tenacity in the face of opposition from Pharaoh and apathy from the people.
  • Joshua had tenacity to take the cities of the Promised Land when it would have been easier to seek peaceful co-existence.
  • The Prophets had tenacity to stand for truth in a time when people were following idols.
  • The early church had tenacity in her missionary and evangelistic zeal.

- Lock him in a prison cell…and you have John Bunyan
- Bury him in the snows of Valley Forge…and you have George Washington.
- Raise him in abject poverty…and you have Abraham Lincoln.
- Strike him down with infantile paralysis…and you have Franklin Roosevelt.
- Rate him as mediocre in chemistry…and you have Louis Pasteur.
- Label him as “too stupid to learn”…and you have Thomas Edison.
- Deafen a genius composer…and you have Ludwig van Beethoven.
- Call him a slow learner and retarded…and you have Albert Einstein.
- Blind him…and you have Ray Charles.
- Tell her she’s too old to start painting at 80…and you have Grandma Moses.
- Call him dull and flunk him in the 6th grade…and you have Winston Churchill.
- Tell a boy that he has no talent in sketching…and you have Walt Disney.

6) He lived in light of the __________________________.

“Give me a man of God - one man, whose faith is master of his mind, and I will right all wrongs and bless the name of all mankind. Give me a man of God - one man, whose tongue is touched with heaven’s fire, and I will flame the darkest hearts with high resolve and clean desire. Give me a man of God - one man, one mighty prophet of the Lord, and I will give you peace on earth, bought with a prayer and not a sword. Give me a man of God - one man, true to the vision that he sees, and I will build your broken shrines, and bring the nations to their knees.” – George Liddell
Tenacity demands:

Passion is:

  ● To build a tower, you count the cost.
  ● Before you go to war, you count the cost.
  ● Good leaders do their homework and research.

Leaders are aware of problems and opportunities.
  1) The task ahead was overwhelming. The circumference of the city was 1½ to 2½ miles.
  2) They had a track record of defeat. What he was asking them to do had never been done before.
  3) The circumstances were discouraging.
“Apathy can only be overcome by enthusiasm, and enthusiasm can only be aroused by two things: first, an ideal which takes the imagination by storm, and second, a definite intelligible plan for carrying that ideal into practice.” – Arnold Toynbee, English historian

“Imagine his grief of heart as he stumbled among those ruins of what was once a great and mighty fortress! Whenever a real work of God is to be done...some faithful, burdened servant has to take a journey such as Nehemiah took, to weep in the night over the ruins, to wrestle in some dark Gethsemane in prayer. . . . Are our hearts ever stirred like that? And have you ever cried, ‘O God, what can I do about this thing?’” – Alan Redpath

1) He identified with ____________________________________________.

2) He revealed his ______________________________________________.

3) He acknowledged ____________________________________________.

4) He saw a ____________________________________________________.

“I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat. What is our aim? I can answer in one word: victory. Victory at all costs, victory in spite of terror; victory however long and hard the road may be; for without victory there is no survival.” – Winston Churchill

5) He _______________________________________.

● The 1st American steamboat took 32 hours to go from New York City to Albany, New York, and people laughed.
● The horse and buggy passed the early motorcar like it was standing still, and people laughed.
● The first electric light bulb was so dim people had to use a gas lamp to see it, and they laughed.
● The first airplane came down 59 seconds after it left the ground, and people laughed.
● We announced a church was going to make movies, and people laughed.
● The Pontiac Observer commented on the beginning of InterVarsity ministries. “A group of well- meaning fanatics have become established at the fast-expanding Oakland University. Already sizeable in number, its members differ from other students and call themselves Christians. Membership is open to all who hold this teacher to be their ‘savior.’ One wonders how a society can thrive on such an insecure basis. The spread of this sedition can only be halted by challenging them at all opportunities, in their group meetings, or in the university and proving to them how unfounded is this idea of theirs.”

“Few dreams come true by themselves. The test of a person lies in action. No one ever stumbled onto something big while sitting down. . . . Realize that nothing is learned while you talk. Words without actions are the assassins of dreams. The smallest good deed is better than the greatest intention. History is made whenever you take the right action. Action is the proper fruit of knowledge. Getting an idea should be like sitting on a tack – it should make you jump up and do something. . . . Some people find life an empty dream because they put nothing into it. Every time one person expresses an idea he finds ten others who thought of it before – but took no action. . . . The devil is willing for you to confess faith as long as you don’t practice it. When praying, we must simultaneously be willing to take action that God directs in the answer to our prayer. The answers to your prayers will include action. . . . Too many people avoid discovering the secret of success because deep down they suspect the secret may be hard work.” – John Mason