DEVOTION:DO NOT TOUCH THAT ROPE!
There is much to chew in this chapter that I am compelled to zero in more to get the most out of it. We will get out of here when the spirit permits. As we saw earlier in this chapter, even though Nehemiah and his team had frustrated the tactics of their enemies, these enemies never gave up. They resorted to new tactics, the use of propaganda. As soon as they realized they could not stop the rebuilding of the wall, and none of their earlier tactics worked, Sanballat, the chief opposition leader sent the following message to Nehemiah by letter.
It is reported among the nations—and Geshem says it is true—that you and the Jews are plotting to revolt, and therefore you are building the wall. Moreover, according to these reports you are about to become their king and have even appointed prophets to make this proclamation about you in Jerusalem: ‘There is a king in Judah!’ Now this report will get back to the king; so come, let us meet together. Nehemiah 6:6-7
Nehemiah’s response was forthright because he knew this was just propaganda.
I sent him this reply: “Nothing like what you are saying is happening; you are just making it up out of your head. Nehemiah 6:8
This opposition group had used many other tactics but their ultimate goal was not lost in Nehemiah’s mind. He states clearly the goal for these enemies.
They were all trying to frighten us, thinking, “Their hands will get too weak for the work, and it will not be completed. Nehemiah 6:9
And what was Nehemiah’s source of strength? Prayer! he prayed to his living God to strengthen his hands!
But I prayed, “Now strengthen my hands. Nehemiah 6:9b
- When the enemy cannot get you at close range, he never gives up trying. One of his last weapons is the use of propaganda. This usually is at the point of desperation. But you must be careful. Propaganda is a rope the enemy throws out there in the hope that you will pick it up. Once you pick it up, he will be right there with you. Now he can engage you in a close range.
- Here is a wonderful quotation from Spurgeon.
Falsehoods usually carry their own refutation somewhere about them, and sting themselves to death. Some lies especially have a peculiar smell, which betrays their rottenness to every honest nose…. Your blameless life will be your best defence, and those who have seen it will not allow you to be condemned so readily as your slanderers expect. The Blind Eye and the Deaf Ear ([Zondervan, pp. 333).
- My father use to tell us, do not run around with your mouth open otherwise you will collect a number of butterflies. The implication is this: do not pay attention to everything that is being said out there. Propaganda is one of those things you never want to pay attention to. It will die by itself as Spurgeon said.
- Satan uses propaganda in order to divert our attention from doing the most important things in our lives. He knows the moment we begin to follow this propaganda, there will be no end to it.
- Is it possible that you are dealing with a serious propaganda about you? Do not worry, it will soon die out. The best defense you can use for your enemies is consistency. Continue doing what you do best for the Lord, and like Nehemiah seek the Lord’s strength in these circumstances.
My father use to tell us, do not run around with your mouth open otherwise you will collect a number of butterflies. The implication is this: do not pay attention to everything that is being said out there. Propaganda is one of those things you never want to pay attention to.
It is a rope that the enemy throws out there
DO NOT TOUCH THAT ROPE!
Pastor Shadrack Ruto