A Working Church

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A Working Church
My Brothers and sisters, We live in a day in age where nobody wants to work anymore. We live in a time where working has become unpopular. We see that everyone has ways and schemes to get rich nowadays but nobody wants to work. Working is a lost art in the world and especially my generation. People rather sit back and receive a check from unemployment even when they are capable of working. We live in a lazy generation. Everyone wants to be rich but doesn't want to work. They want to drive the lexus and mercedes but don’t want to put in the work to buy the mercedes or lexus. Nobody wants to work and the sad thing about it is that we see the world with this mentality and by them having this mentality its starting to rub off on the church and now we see the church in a mental state of not wanting to work I’ll Say that Again. (2x)
I’m Almost done. I just came today to encourage Antioch to Keep working. Don’t adapt to the mentality of the World but keep Working. As a body of believers we have been called to work. We got to keep working.
There Are two familiar scriptures that I want to Read in your hearing this morning. Nehemiah 4:6 and Galatians 6:9.
These scriptures teach us some things. Nehemiah shows us that we must have the mindset and the will to work. Galatians teach us what happens when we work.
Lets take a look at Nehemiah. I am going to start at the 4th verse just to help prove my exposition disclosure of the text. Basically saying to help prove my point.
Verse 4 tells us 4 Then I prayed, “Hear us, our God, for we are being mocked. May their scoffing fall back on their own heads, and may they themselves become captives in a foreign land! 5 Do not ignore their guilt. Do not blot out their sins, for they have provoked you to anger here in front of[a] the builders.”
6 At last the wall was completed to half its height around the entire city, for the people had worked with enthusiasm. Or other version say the people the mind to work
When you look at Verse 4 it tells us that Nehemiah begins to pray. Let’s stop right there because thats a big thing that people don’t like to pray anymore. Prayer is important. Prayer is how you communicate with God. The bible tells us that we should pray without ceasing. Keep on praying. Even when you don’t have the words to pray the Old folk use to moan and groan. The bible tells me the that when you don’t have the words to pray you can moan and groan and God will make out what your moanings and groanings are. So Continue to Pray church. A working church is a praying Church. Because when 2 or 3 are gathered together touching and agreeing Jesus is in the Midst. Prayer Prayer Prayer we must remember that when you are the church it is your prayers that hold things together. The Bible Says the Prayers of the Righteous Avail Much. Praying is so important. Pray without ceasing, pray when times are bad, pray when times are sad, Pray pray pray. The old song says I know prayer changes. Is there anybody here other than me that knows prayer changes things. Look at your neighbor and ask them Are you praying?
So we see here in verse 4 Nehemiah Prays To God. He prays because him and the Jews were being mocked, ridiculed, Talked about , Lied on, all of the above. So Nehemiah doesn’t try to go back at them with his words or make up things about them but he prays to God. How do you react when they mock and ridicule you and the church. How do you act when they lie on you. If the Truth be told alot of us Don’t want to pray when this happens but we want to seek out revenge and see how we can get them back. But The bible tells me that vengeance is mine sayeth the Lord. It also tells me the he will prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies, It also tell me that the Lord will make my enemies my foot stool, It also tells me that No weapon formed against me shall prosper, It also tells me Love my enemies and pray for those who persecute me. So even when they talk about me and drag my name in the mud I have to dig deep down an pray for them because My God will Fight for me and He will See me through.(pause)
So we see in this verse that we must pray and just simply pray what is going on. Nehemiah simply prayed what was going on and left it in Gods Hands. He didn’t take matter into his own hand but he simply put it in the Masters hand. The song writer said I put it all in his hands, No matter how big or small he is the master of them all and I put it all in is hands.
Can you imagine how simple life can be if you put your problems, your situations, your enemies, ow whatever it is that you are facing, If you just put it in Gods hands he will take care of you all you have to do is obey trust and keep his word. So a Working Church must pray and learn how to put things in the hands of the Lord. Not only that but Verse 6 Reveals something to me. Verse 6 Says, At last the wall was completed to half its height around the entire city, for the people had worked with enthusiasm.
Verse 6 tells us that they completed the building of half the Wall because the people had work enthusiastic. Other translations say they had the mind to work. Its something about having the mind to work. When you have the mind to work, when you have the drive to work you can accomplish things that people thought you would never accomplish. Tom Brady was looked over by so many but one team took a chance on him in the 6th round of the 2000 NFL draft and he has become one of the best Quarterbacks the NFL has ever seen because of his determination to work and reach his Goal. Is there anybody here that wants to work today? Is there anybody that has the drive and determination to Work today? No matter how bad the odds are stacked against me, I'm still going to work.
Too many people of the Church have lost that will to work. The old folk use to sing a song Oh Zion whats the matter now? You don’t pray like you used to pray, You don’t sing like you used to sing, You don’t Preach Like you used to preach, You don’t fast like you used to fast. The Church has lost its urgency to work in the Kingdom. There used to be a time where the saints would be happy to come to church and pray and praise God. The saints would have a burning down in them to get to the House of the Lord and Praise God. We need to return back and get our minds in order and to be excited about doing the kingdom's agenda. We are excited when it comes to little pookie and lil coco football and dance class, but when was the last time you’ve been excited about prayer meeting and bible study. We need to get our excitement and fire back when it comes down to the kingdom's agenda.
So a Working Church must Have this Mindset to Work. After you have the mindset to work We find out how are working Pays off, Galatians 6:9 Says
And let us not be weary in well doing, for in due season we shall reap if we faint not (do not lose heart). Church we can’t give up today. We’ve got to continue the work. The enemy won’t just stop with one attack, but he will use any means necessary to stop the work of God. We can become weary from challenges from around us or challenges from within. As I read this verse, my mind went back to the scripture in Nehemiah, and I want to read a few more verses.
7 [d]But when Sanballat and Tobiah and the Arabs, Ammonites, and Ashdodites heard that the work was going ahead and that the gaps in the wall of Jerusalem were being repaired, they were furious. 8 They all made plans to come and fight against Jerusalem and throw us into confusion.9 But we prayed to our God and guarded the city day and night to protect ourselves.
10 Then the people of Judah began to complain, “The workers are getting tired, and there is so much rubble to be moved. We will never be able to build the wall by ourselves.”
11 Meanwhile, our enemies were saying, “Before they know what’s happening, we will swoop down on them and kill them and end their work.”
12 The Jews who lived near the enemy came and told us again and again,
We see in this scripture, how challenges around us can cause us to become weary. We see more opposition to the work comes against the Jews. Not only are there one or two enemies to oppose the work, but they have recruited more. Several nations come together to create confusion among the Jews while they work.
Your enemy does not want to see you prosper in the thing which God has called you to do. (2x)
Your enemy does not want to see you rebuild, doing well, or prospering. Your enemy wants to intimidate you and create confusion so the work will stop. Before it was just them talking about them and mocking, but now they spoke of attacking the Jews. These threats were used to paralyze the Jews with fear to stop the work. We know this is a tactic of the enemy, for our adversary, the devil walks around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. The lion’s roar is meant to paralyze its prey. They also wanted to create confusion among the people of God. When we are confused, we will not work. Don’t be distracted by the tricks of the enemy. God is not the author of confusion. When confusion arises, check to make sure your focus is still on God.
But even with these new threats, they continued to pray to God and continued the work. They set a watch. Half the people worked, Half the people watched and were prepared to fight. Our prayers do not replace our actions. But God gives us wisdom to make our actions effective and to continue in the work God has called us to do.
Then there were challenges from inside. There began to be discouragement from the people. Even though the wall was half way built, they began to focus on what still needed to be completed. Verse 10 - 11 says, Then the people of Judah began to complain, “The workers are getting tired, and there is so much rubble to be moved. We will never be able to build the wall by ourselves.” Even our enemies are saying,”Before they know what’s happening, we will swoop down on them and kill them and end their work.
Church it’s disturbing when your praise turns to complaining. The people of Judah began to complain. Judah means praise. But instead of praise to our God coming from Judah, they began to complain. Ask your neighbor, has your praise turned to complaining? You have been doing well, but all of a sudden, you look at what’s still left to do and fatigue sets in. You’re tired. You’ve been working hard. You’ve been praying. You’ve been fasting, but it doesn’t look like you’ve accomplished much. And when you think about all that’s left to do, you become weary. But I come by to remind you today Antioch don’t be weary in well doing. Keep on keeping on. Don’t give up. Don’t quit. Don’t throw in the towel. Just like in a basketball game. There are two halves. You can’t play well in the first half and give up in the 2nd half. You’ve got to keep playing until the final second of the game. You can’t listen to the talk of the other team. But you’ve got to press on. Don’t give up. Galatians say’s Don’t be weary in well doing. We’ve got to continue doing. We can’t sit down on the job. For in due season. Not in the spring season or summer season. Not in the fall or winter season, but in due season, we shall reap. That’s a promise church. Not we might reap, be we shall reap. But there is a condition, if we do not faint. I reminded of Jesus, how he came down through 42 generations. He came to do the will of the Father. He had work to do. He didn’t allow the enemy to trick Him after being in the wilderness 40 days and was hungry. He spoke the Word and continued to do the work. He had opposition from the scribes, the Pharisees and the Sadducees, but he continued to do the work. He had opposition from some of the disciples; they fought among each other about who would be the greatest, one who didn’t want him to die, and one betrayed him, but He continued to do the work. He had opposition on the cross, when they mocked him and spit on Him, but he continued the work. Jesus didn’t let anything stop him from doing the work. The Jews in Nehemiah Chapter 4 was looking at all the work that still needed to be done. They had to move the rubble. The broken down walls, the charred remains, the stones that had to be removed in order for the work to continue. Sometimes we think we've been working so long and hard. Even though we made some progress, there’s a lot of work remaining. We can become discouraged. But look at Jesus. Jesus knew he had to die for the sins of the world. He knew the task would be hard. He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane “If it be possible, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will by your will be done. Even though the task ahead was hard, Jesus continued to do the work. Not only did he do it, but he did it with joy. Hebrews 12:2 says...fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of my faith. For the joy set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God… Don’t be weary in well doing, for in due season we shall reap if we do not faint.
Church, don’t be weary in well doing. God has a work for us to do in building the kingdom. Have a made up mind to do the work of God. Don’t let opposition stop you. Don’t let fear paralyze you. Don’t let confusion and complaining enter and hinder you. Continue to pray, continue to praise and God will strengthen you to do the work. There is great reward in doing the work. Don’t you want to hear him say, Well done my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little, I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of the Lord. Don’t quit when half the job is completed. Continue to work.
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