The Prophet Nehemiah

I should like to call your attention to the prophet Nehemiah. We may

gain some help from that distinguished man who accomplished a great

work. He was one of the last of the prophets, was supposed to be

contemporary with Malachi, and perhaps his book was one of the last

of the Old Testament books that was written. He might have known

Daniel, for he was a young man in the declining years of that very

eminent and godly st
tesman. We are sure of one thing at least--he

was a man of sterling worth. Although he was brought up in the

Persian court among idolaters, yet he had a character that has stood

all these centuries.

Notice his prayer in which he made confession of Israel's apostasy

from God. There may be some confessions we need to make to be

brought into close fellowship with God. I have no doubt that numbers

of Christians are hungering and thirsting for a personal blessing,

and have a great desire to get closer to God. If that is the desire

of your heart, keep in mind that if there is some obstacle in the

way which you can remove, you will not get a blessing until you

remove it. We must cooperate with God. If there is any sin in my

heart that I am not willing to give up then I need not pray. You may

take a bottle and cork it up tight, and put it under Niagara, and

not a drop of that mighty volume of water will get into the bottle.

If there is any sin in my heart that I am not willing to give up, I

need not expect a blessing. The men who have had power with God in

prayer have always begun by confessing their sins. Take the prayers

of Jeremiah and Daniel. You find Daniel confessing his sin, when

there isn't a single sin recorded against him; but he confesses his

sin and the sins of the people. Notice how David confessed his sins

and what power he had with God. So it is a good thing for us to

begin as Nehemiah did.

It seems that some men had come down from his country to the Persian

court, perhaps to see the king on business. This man, who was in

high favor with the king, met them, and finding that they had come

from Jerusalem he began to inquire about his country. He not only

loved his God, but he