Training Believing Men to be Messianic Disciples
Rooted and Grounded
Though we are eternally grateful for the many great and godly women of faith, if in fact a work of God is going to be established and growing, we must have men in leadership. With that in mind, Word of Messiah Ministries from its inception, has been leading men to Messiah and discipling them in the faith that they may be rooted and grounded in the truth of God’s word.
Messiah’s Own Atonement
This past Labor Day weekend was our opportunity to gather with 60 other men to study the book of Nehemiah and learn together how to develop a Messianic Testimony. For as Nehemiah built the wall around Jerusalem as a testimony to God’s protection and security of Israel, so we too are building our testimony of God’s protection and security of us in Messiah’s finished work.
My first message established the foundation for our testimony in the sacrificial blood that typified Messiah’s own atonement. Many bible students do not realize that the first matter that was accomplished when exiles returned from Babylon and Persia was to build the sacrificial altar and the Temple (Ezra 1:2-11; 3:1-6). They understood that there could be no blessing, success, or victory apart from the bloody sacrifice. For though they went into exile for sin, they knew they returned no better than they left; they needed the blood sacrifice.
Our Greatest Concerns Reflect our Greatest Commitments
Surprisingly, the book of Nehemiah is a book of prayer. Though Nehemiah is thought of as an administrator, there are at least 14 prayers in the book’s 13 chapters. Nothing of significance in the work of God is ever accomplished without prayer. So too, in our homes and families, if we want our homes to be places of victory, they must first be houses of prayer, for God wants His “house to be a house of prayer” (Isaiah 56:7).
It is because Nehemiah was a man of God that he was a man of prayer. As a man of God, he asks his visiting brother Hanani about Jerusalem and the returnees from exile. Our greatest concerns reflect our greatest commitments. And his concerns reflect God’s concerns for His people Israel. “For concerning Israel, ‘His hands are outstretched all day long to His obstinate and rebellious people’” (Romans 10:21). Men of God are greatly concerned for the Jewish people because they are greatly committed to the redemption of Israel.
“It was accomplished with the help of our God”
Howard Silverman (Beth Messiah, Columbus, Ohio) and Devin Baucom (Hope of Israel, Monroe, NC) gave excellent teachings from this same book. Devin brilliantly taught on Nehemiah’s spiritually minded planning needed for the wall as well as for building our testimony in Messiah. Howard gave two excellent messages, one message dealing with obstacles from without and within (Nehemiah 4 and 5 respectively) and his second message was about appreciating the wall that was amazingly built in 52 days (he noted that it usually takes longer to put together a Passover Seder!) but that it was noted “that it was accomplished with the help of our God” (6:16). So too our testimony despite all the obstacles will glorify Yeshua for it will be with God’s help and to His glory!
“The Joy of the Lord is your strength”
My final message was to point out once more that though the wall was built, still they wept at the reading of the Torah (8:9). For though the wall was built that could ostensibly keep out the enemies, it could not keep out a holy God. But they are told not to weep because in fact that sacrifices have been made and “the joy of the Lord is your strength” (8:10).
Though the word of God was taught, the real work of the Spirit came as we often prayed together and had small group meetings after each message for personal application. The men all testified that they had been greatly encouraged and built up in their faith through the conference, and one new Israeli believer found it life changing!