It is true that God is the One who grants the conditions whereby unity can occur, but you and I must choose to take advantage of that situation. We can ask God to create the conditions wherein unity, forgiveness, acceptance, and love rule the day, but God’s people must choose to respond as the Spirit of God moves in that way. As believers unite in their hearts and in their purpose, a real move of God and renewal is the result of that unity!
By Nevin Bass
Then Eliashib the high priest rose up with his brethren the priests, and they budded the sheep gate; they sanctified it, and set up the doors of it; even unto the tower of Meah they sanctified it, unto the tower of Hananeel (Neh. 3:1).
CHAPTER THREE OF NEHEMIAH emphasizes the power of unity e work of rebuilding. There is no single force of man’s own making re powerful than this one. Are we speaking out of turn, or is this not od’s own assessment of the power of unity? In Genesis chapter eleven, we find the whole of human civilization united behind one ideal. Note God’s own words concerning such unity of purpose and philosophy. God’s comments about the work at the tower of Babel should grab our attention in this regard.
And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do (Gen. 11:6).
When the people are one in burden, purpose, determination, and effort, there are few things they cannot accomplish. Notice that these men in the plain of Shinar so long ago were not united to do God’s will but were united in rebellion. If those united in purpose to rebel against -God can still accomplish so much when they are one, how much more can the people of God accomplish when they do God’s will in God’s way?
In Nehemiah’s day, the communication of a vision and the story of God’s provision stirred the people of God to action. Their reaction was immediate:
And they said, Let us rise up and build. So they strengthened their hands for this good work (Neh. 2:18).
They rose up and strengthened their hands to begin the task of the vision that Nehemiah communicated to them.
This chapter demonstrates the importance of all those seemingly insignificant sacrifices that are made to advance the work of God. We may feel that our contribution is just a little drop in the bucket, but every contribution adds up to a significant amount when we all pull together and each one does his part. In chapter three God inspired the meticulous recording of the details of rebuilding, including who per¬formed the various tasks involved. What at times seems insignificant to us, is not insignificant to God. No! He sees and notes every sacrifice that is made, every gift that is offered, and the loving hands that present the gift to His glory.
The task is before them—rebuilding the walls and reconstituting the gates of the city. And so goes the “next unto him” chapter of the Bible. The phrase “next unto him” occurs fifteen times in chapter three. We also find the phrase “after them repaired” sixteen times. In total, phrases that emphasize unity are mentioned thirty-one times. The en¬tire chapter is the catalog of a unified effort. The emphasis of all thirty-two verses is the unified effort of God’s people. Every soul in-volved in the work of God had someone to work next to him and another to work on the other side or after him. Unity is only as strong as our commitment to it. Unity is our task. Unity is our role.