God is Not Finished – And Neither are You

Summary

Pastor Dave Amstutz uses the story of the rebuilding of God's house after captivity as a model for what God is doing in the world today and indvidually in our lives as believers.  The temple represents the presence and rule of God on earth, which is being established today through the church.  God's sovereign power and authority were at work in the project, yet it got delayed because His people were intimidated by trouble and ended up getting caught up in the cares and concerns of life.  God is calling us as a people to put our hand to the work of building His kingdom in our generation.

Outline

  1. The story of people like us – the story of God’s chosen people.
    1. How the people got into captivity and how they got out.
      1. The people did evil in the eyes of God and went into captivity.
      2. God sent many people to them to try to turn them from evil, but they refused to listen.
      3. God tried for years to turn their hearts to Him, but they were committed to their own sin and selfishness – God therefore had to send them into captivity.
      4. The enemy wants to destroy everything of value in our lives if we allow him to.
      5. Sin and selfishness makes us slaves.
      6. When the Sabbath of the land was fulfilled, according to the word of the prophet Jeremiah, God turned back Israel’s captivity.
      7. Even in captivity there is hope.
      8. Through Cyrus, God decreed the rebuilding of His house.
      9. Then God stirred up the people.
    2. The story begins with big loss, of what the locust have eaten.
      1. They had lost their faith and identity as God’s chosen people.
      2. They lost their cities, homes, lives and all they had.
      3. What was lost is the very thing God promises to restore.
    3. All the words of prophesy over us, our house and our church, God is going to fulfill.
  2. A call to rebuild the house of God – the story of redemption.
    1. The temple represented the presence of God and His rule in their midst.
    2. When God begins restoration, he often begins with a person who responds to the stirring of the Spirit of God.
    3. God drove the work of rebuilding through individuals whose hearts were moved.
    4. God is looking for a few good men and women, not bigshots, but people with big hearts and big vision.
  3. The first thing rebuilt was the altar – they had right priorities.
    1. The first thing is to put our house in order by rebuilding the place where we meet with God, receive atonement and commune with God.
    2. We are the temple of God, and God wants to reestablish our foundations with our relationship with God.
    3. Our foundation in Christ needs to be established once and for all.
    4. Nehemiah came because the rebuilding had ceased.
  4. Ezra restored the laws of the Lord.
    1. When the law was read, people were cut to the heart, wept and repented before the Lord.
    2. When the word of the Lord comes and the eyes of our understanding are opened, restoration comes.
    3. God wants us to reflect His glory, character and nature before a watching world.
    4. God’s law brings order and order brings peace.
  5. Nehemiah heard a bad report about Jerusalem.
    1. His heart broke in fasting and prayer over the state of God’s house.
    2. Broken hearts prepare us to be used by God.
    3. Nehemiah left all for the glory of God because he was broken over the condition of His people.
    4. We need to be people of prayer, who seek His face. That is the strategy for breakthrough.
  6. Life without boundaries is like a city without walls – it is open to anything.
    1. We often have gates (eyes and ears) that let just about anything in.
    2. If you let evil in, you will distort the nature and character of God.
    3. We need to be careful about what we let into the gates of our lives.
    4. The rebuilding ceased when the people blended into ungodly culture.
  7. After the people began to rebuild the temple – great opposition began.
    1. Do not be surprised at the fiery trials that come when we put things into divine order.
    2. Every type of trouble you can think of came to try to stop God’s house being rebuilt.
    3. The rebuilding stopped until God raised up the prophet Hagai.
    4. The people had turned to compromise and complacency.
  8. During the second return there was also great opposition.
    1. Nehemiah went to Jerusalem because he knew that God was not finished.
    2. God is establishing our house as a people of valor, who will overcome the warfare.
    3. When we meet opposition with great faith and a great big God, we overcome.
  9. We all need to rise up and do the work.
    1. Prayer empowers rebuilding God’s house.
    2. When opposition comes, we need to hit our knees.
  10. God is not done, and neither are you!
Published in Preaching Videos