READ Nehemiah 6:1-9
Daniel 7:25 He shall speak words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High
If you sand it down long enough, even a mighty piece of timber disappears to dust. This seems to be the tactic of the enemy throughout the book of Nehemiah but particularly in this chapter. Sanballat has made a new friend, and so together with Geshem he makes another attack on Nehemiah. This time his play is to get Nehemiah away from the wall and out into the wilderness where they can kill him. So he sends a message asking to meet. Nehemiah is a man of great wisdom and quickly sees an ulterior motive at play, so returns his “No thank you,” message. But Sanballat is tenacious. 4 more times he sends exactly the same message. The language doesn’t vary a jot; just the same old same old. You see Sanballat is not attempting to surprise Nehemiah, he is simply seeking to wear him down.
Wearing down the saints is an age-old trick of the enemy. Isn’t it true that he often whispers the same old lie in your ear time and time again, he throws up the same old sin from your past, he dangles the same old temptation in your face? He is attempting to sand the timber into dust. It is so very important that you recognize this tactic; otherwise sooner or later you succumb to his attack. Like the parent of a whining toddler we eventually give in to his demands.
Nehemiah gives us a lesson in what to do in a season when we feel like the enemy is sanding us. He prays a short but significant sentence, “Now strengthen my hands.” He doesn’t pray, “Make the enemy stop.” The enemy won’t stop opposing you because he is your enemy and opposition will be his game until eternity when he faces his own judgment. We must be wise about this. The enemy will attempt to wear us down, so in order to defend, we must set our faces like flint, decide ahead of time we aren’t backing down, and ask Almighty God for the strength to resist his advances and to push on with the work.
God, strengthen my hands. Amen.