Thursday, October 31, 2019

FIVE-MINUTE SABBATH SCHOOL
October 26 - November 1
Nehemiah 5: Violating the Spirit of the Law

So they're complaining about us to Nehemiah?

Let them.

Nehemiah's a realist, after all; he knows that he needs our support.

And yes, they'll tell him that we're taking advantage of this famine -- that people are dying so that we can get rich.

So?

Remember: Nehemiah needs us more than we need him.

And given the choice between poor people like them and rich people like us . . . 

What makes you think that Nehemiah is going to back them?

For more on this topic, go to this week's Adult Bible Study Guide.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

FIVE-MINUTE SABBATH SCHOOL:
October 19-25
Facing Opposition

Don't get me wrong -- I'd like to see this wall get built as much as anyone . . . 

But you've got to admit: it's been nothing but trouble ever since Nehemiah showed up.

And no, I'm not a big fan of Sanballat and Tobias, but you can't blame them for being upset. 

I mean, Nehemiah shows up and starts changing things -- starts demanding that things get done his way . . . 

So it's only natural that local leaders are going to push back -- right?

Then too, Sanballat and Tobias were here a long time before Nehemiah ever showed up . . . and I'm guessing they're going to be here a long time after he's gone (if you know what I mean).

And again, I like what Nehemiah's doing in theory . . . 

I just don't want any trouble.

So why is Nehemiah making life difficult for the rest of us?

Friday, October 18, 2019

FIVE-MINUTE SABBATH SCHOOL:
October 12-18
God's Call

Thank you for appearing on our show, Nehemiah . . . and I'm sure that our viewers would like to hear more about your call.

My what?

Your call -- the way God called you to rebuild Jerusalem.

Well, I'd been talking to my brother . . . and then I prayed about it . . . and then things just sort of "happened."

And God confirmed all this with a vision?

No.

A dream?

No.

Angels . . . a voice . . . maybe even a message from one of our prophets?

None of that, no. 

But when you moved ahead in faith, then God confirmed His call by clearing away all obstacles -- right?

Yes and no. I mean, getting the Shah's permission was a miracle -- no doubt about it . . . but after that, it was just one headache after another.

So . . . how do you know that God called you to rebuild Jerusalem?

Me? I just saw a problem, and did something about it. 

That's it?

That's it. I mean, what more of a "call" do you need?

Thursday, October 10, 2019

FIVE-MINUTE SABBATH SCHOOL:
October 5-11
Nehemiah

Did you hear what happened to Nehemiah?

The Shah's cup-bearer? 

Not any more!

I'm not surprised -- the way he's been acting lately, you'd expect the Shah to be a little suspicious!

He was -- and when the Shah asked for an explanation, Nehemiah asked for a new job!

He's lucky he didn't get a new head!

Yeah, but Nehemiah got lucky; the Shah gave him what he wants.

Which is?

Nehemiah's in charge of rebuilding Jerusalem.

That's on the frontier, right? I can see why the Shah might go for it . . . but why's Nehemiah giving up a sweet job like cup-bearer to do something like this?

He said something about it being "an answer to prayer."

Since when does the Shah answer prayer?!?

Ever since Nehemiah started praying, I guess.

Friday, October 04, 2019

FIVE-MINUTE SABBATH SCHOOL:
September 28 - October 4
Making Sense of History: Zerubbabel & Ezra

Ummm . . . Isaiah?

Can we talk?

I mean, I understand just why you're excited about the exiles return to Judah; we've been waiting a long time for that kind of news. 

And I agree that God used Cyrus the Persian to make this happen -- and what's more, this isn't the first time God's worked with those those nasty, heathen, pagan Gentiles to bring blessings on His people. 

But you're on record as saying that Cyrus is God's anointed one, i.e. Cyrus is God's messiah . . . 

Excuse me?

Are we both talking about the same guy -- you know, Cyrus the Persian? Cyrus the Zoroastrian? Cyrus the nasty, heathen, pagan, Gentiles who is definitely not one of God's chosen people?

Yes, that guy!

And if you're telling me that God can use someone like that to bless His people . . . 

Then is there anyone God cannot use?