5/15/16 – Inspired to be Generous – Nehemiah 5:14-19

Inspired to be Generous

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John Stange

Nehemiah 5:14-19

I. Generosity doesn’t cause others to suffer (v. 14-15)

II. Generosity isn’t consumed with what you “get” (v. 16-17)

Revelation 19:6-9 – Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out,
“Hallelujah!
For the Lord our God

the Almighty reigns.
7 Let us rejoice and exult

and give him the glory,
for the marriage of the Lamb has come,

and his Bride has made herself ready; 8 it was granted her to clothe herself

with fine linen, bright and pure”—
for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.

9 And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me,“These are the true words of God.”

Revelation 3:20 – Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.

III. Generosity is willing to pay a price to bless others (v. 18-19)

Ephesians 1:7-9 – In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, 8 which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight 9 making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ.

5/8/16 – Showing Mercy to Those in Need – Nehemiah 5:1-13

Showing Mercy to Those in Need

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John Stange

Nehemiah 5:1-13

I. What are we electing to become slaves to? (v. 1-5)

Romans 6:16 – Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?

Romans 6:17-18 – But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, 18 and,having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.

II. Don’t take advantage of your brother when he’s down (v. 6-10)

Ephesians 4:26-27 – Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil.

Mark 5:25-28 – And there was a woman who had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, 26 and who had suffered much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was no better but rather grew worse. 27 She had heard the reports about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his garment. 28 For she said, “If I touch even his garments, I will be made well.”

III. Be good to others without seeking anything in return (v. 11-13)

Mark 10:45 – For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

5/1/16 – Returning to the Work God Has Given You – Nehemiah 4:15-23

Returning to the Work God Has Given You

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John Stange

Nehemiah 4:15-23

I. God frustrates the plans of those who oppose Him (v. 15-18)

1 Peter 5:5 – Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

II. God fights for His people (v. 19-20)

1 Corinthians 15:54-57 –
54 Then, when our dying bodies have been transformed into bodies that will never die, this Scripture will be fulfilled:
“Death is swallowed up in victory.
55 O death, where is your victory?

O death, where is your sting?”
56 For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power. 57 But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.

III. God has equipped us with the weapon we need most (v. 21-23)

1 Thessalonians 5:11, NLT – So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.

Ephesians 6:17 – Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

4/24/16 – Praying for God’s Sustaining Presence – Nehemiah 4:1-14

Praying for God’s Sustaining Presence

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John Stange

Nehemiah 4:1-14

I. Turn back their taunts (v. 1-5)

Romans 12:17-21, NLT –
Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. 18 Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.
19 Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say,

“I will take revenge;
I will pay them back,” says the Lord.

20 Instead,

“If your enemies are hungry, feed them.
If they are thirsty, give them something to drink.

In doing this, you will heap
burning coals of shame on their heads.”

21 Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.

II. Set a guard as protection (v. 6-9)

Proverbs 4:23-27, NLT – Guard your heart above all else,
for it determines the course of your life. 24 Avoid all perverse talk;
stay away from corrupt speech. 25 Look straight ahead,
and fix your eyes on what lies before you. 26 Mark out a straight path for your feet;
stay on the safe path. 27 Don’t get sidetracked;
keep your feet from following evil.

III. Remember the Lord in the midst of your fight (v. 10-14)

Ephesians 6:12, NLT – For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.

4/17/16 – The Side of Leadership We Rarely Notice – Nehemiah 2:9-20

The Side of Leadership We Rarely Notice

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John Stange

Nehemiah 2:9-20

I. Expect opposition (v. 9-10)

2 Corinthians 2:14-16 – But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. 15 For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing,16 to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life. Who is sufficient for these things?

II. Know what you’re talking about before you speak (v. 11-16)

Ecclesiastes 6:11, NLT – The more words you speak, the less they mean. So what good are they?

Matt. 7:24, 28-29 – “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock.”

When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, 29 for he taught with real authority—quite unlike their teachers of religious law.

III. Consider the motives of those who jeer you before you internalize their words (v. 17- 20)

Mark 15:29-30, NLT – 29 The people passing by shouted abuse, shaking their heads in mockery. “Ha! Look at you now!” they yelled at him. “You said you were going to destroy the Temple and rebuild it in three days. 30 Well then, save yourself and come down from the cross!”

4/10/16 – The Good Hand of God at Work in Your Life – Nehemiah 2:1-8

The Good Hand of God at Work in Your Life

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John Stange

Nehemiah 2:1-8

I. Your fear might be evidence of faith in use (v. 1-3)

Hebrews 11:1-3, NLT – Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see. 2 Through their faith, the people in days of old earned a good reputation. 3 By faith we understand that the entire universe was formed at God’s command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen.

Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

II. Your prayers don’t have to be long to be genuine (v. 4-5)

Mark 12:38-40 – Jesus also taught: “Beware of these teachers of religious law! For they like to parade around in flowing robes and receive respectful greetings as they walk in the marketplaces.39 And how they love the seats of honor in the synagogues and the head table at banquets.40 Yet they shamelessly cheat widows out of their property and then pretend to be pious by making long prayers in public. Because of this, they will be more severely punished.”

III. Your faithfulness can be used by God to accomplish great things (v. 6-8)

Daniel 9:25-26a – Now listen and understand! Seven sets of seven plus sixty-two sets of seven will pass from the time the command is given to rebuild Jerusalem until a ruler—the Anointed One—comes. Jerusalem will be rebuilt with streets and strong defenses, despite the perilous times.

26 “After this period of sixty-two sets of seven, the Anointed One will be killed, appearing to have accomplished nothing,

4/3/16 – Getting Fired Up to Take Action – Nehemiah 1:1-11

Getting Fired Up to Take Action

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John Stange

Nehemiah 1:1-11

I. Receiving news that breaks your heart (v. 1-3)

Luke 19:41-42 – And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, 42 saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.

Ephesians 4:30 – And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

II. Placing your burden before the Lord (v. 4-7)

Proverbs 12:25, NLT – Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up.

III. Taking action in line with God’s will (v. 8-11)