Nehem. 6:3

Robert Hawker

"I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down why should the work cease, whilst I leave it and come down to you?" –Nehem. vi. 3.

My soul, a very blessed instruction is held forth to thee, in these words. Nehemiah met with sad interruptions in his service, while building the Lord's house. Various were the attempts made by the enemies of God and his cause, to call him off from his labours. But this was his answer to all. Now, my soul, thou hast many enemies also, both from within and without; the world, and the powers of darkness, and thine own corruptions, are all in league to interrupt thy pursuit of divine things. When, therefore, the Sanballats and the Geshems of the day invite thee to the villages, in the plain of Ono, here is thine answer: "Why should the work of the Lord cease, when the King's business requires dispatch?" Wherefore should the body, with all its corrupt affections, drag down the soul? Is it reasonable, is it proper to be concerned for the things of a day, while regardless of eternity? Wilt thou for ever be as little children, amused with toys, and taken up with playthings, when Jesus is calling thee, and proposing himself to thee, for thy constant, unceasing, present, and everlasting delight? Oh! for grace and strength from the Lord, to be able, like Abraham, to fray away those fowls which come down upon the sacrifice! Oh! do thou, Lord, drive both the buyers and the sellers from thy temple! Take my whole heart and soul, and all my affections, and fix and centre them all on thyself! Every vanity, every robber, like Barabbas of old, will be preferred to thee, thou dear Emanuel, unless thy grace restrain and keep under, what thy grace hath taught me to know and feel that I carry about with me, a body of sin and death, which is forever calling me aside from thee. Oh! let thy grace make its way through all the swarms of vain thoughts and interruptions which surround me, and make my soul "as the chariots of Aminadab!" Let no longer these "dead flies spoil the excellent ointment," made fragrant by the rich spices of thy blessed Spirit; but when saluted even by the most innocent call, like that made to Jesus himself, of his mother and his brethren being without, desiring to speak to him, Oh! for grace, that, like my Lord, even then, I may not suffer the higher claims of my God and Saviour to pass by, nor the work of the Lord and the concern of my soul to cease, whilst I come down to them!


Robert Hawker

[Top of page]