Joel Plantinga

READ : Nehemiah 4:1-9

Hear, O our God, for we are despised . . . (v. 4)

Growing up as an only child, I can report with certainty that I never lost a game I played against myself. Whether it was basketball or a video game, I was always the winner. If only all our battles were so easily won.

The Israelites faced great opposition in rebuilding the wall. The first struggle was against their own unfaithfulness, which had brought them to this point in the first place. On top of that, there were other enemies who were dead-set on making this project fail. Using threats and taunts, these enemies tried to discourage the people and make them give up hope.

Being a Christian means being a spiritual warrior. The Bible makes it clear that we are in the middle of a battle between good and evil. We must expect that by doing the things that God wants us to do we will be entering combat with our enemy Satan, the thief who seeks to steal, kill, and destroy.

Prepare by committing yourself to regular prayer and fasting, as well as keeping yourself vigilant against all of the devil’s schemes. Nehemiah’s example and our faith assure us that while the battles will rage, the war’s outcome is already decided. Here’s a hint—God is always the winner!


Lord, we depend on you for strength in every battle and pray for your protection. Amen.