Men Seeking God
A Study of Nehemiah
Dr. Jim Denison
The Book of Nehemiah opens and closes with prayer. This is the first of 12 instances of prayer recorded in the Book of Nehemiah, and the most crucial. If God does not answer this prayer, the story of the Hebrew nation ends.
So far we have learned to recognize God’s holiness (v. 5), to pray with humility (v. 6a), and to confess our sin with honesty (vs. 6b-7). Nehemiah has shown us to admit our need of God’s grace (v. 8) and then claim that grace for ourselves and our nation (v. 9). Now, how does Nehemiah approach God with his need? How do we?
Remember all God has done (v. 10)
Verse 10: “They are your servants and your people, whom you redeemed by your great strength and your mighty hand.” “Your servants and your people” echoes a common theme in the Hebrew Bible by which God claims the Jewish nation as his own.
How are they his? He “redeemed by your great strength and your mighty hand.” “Redeem” in the Hebrew involves the payment of a price to reclaim a slave. God did this in Egypt, and across Jewish history, including at the flooded Jordan River, at Jericho, and in delivering them from Babylon.