"Preparing people to make an impact for God in their generation and to be fit to enter His Kingdom"
Bible Reading: Ezra 4: 1-24
All of us have problems and difficulties that we will face in whatever we are doing: business, professional, personal, divine calling upon your life. How we respond to those problems, challenges and setbacks will determine our success or failure.
From our text, 50,000 people responded and left Babylon for Jerusalem to build the temple of the Lord. They built the altar and laid the foundation of the temple and the adversaries came. These enemies caused a serious setback that made the work be delayed for 16 years. Afterward, God had to move prophets Haggai and Zechariah who were in Jerusalem to prophesy. God stirred up the people to resume the work. But the enemies began again to hinder the work and they sent a letter to King Darius, unfortunately for the enemies the king reconfirmed it and the work continued without further hindrance. They finished it and Nehemiah built the walls.
During the 16 years of setback, according to 2 Kings 17: 24-41, the people of Israel compromised and worshiped the Babylonian idols under the pretense of cooperation.
The Enemy’s Tricks
The enemy uses:
What Not to Do if There is Setback
Biblical Strategies for Overcoming the Enemy’s Tactics
There are many more strategies than I can list here, for the sake of time let us look at four:
In Time of setback, Let Us Encourage Ourselves with These Bible Verses:
Ps 37:39 But the salvation of the righteous is of the LORD: he is their strength in the time of trouble. (KJV)
Ps 37:40 And the LORD shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him.
Prov 12:13 The wicked is snared by the transgression of his lips: but the just shall come out of trouble. (KJV)
Prov 11:8 The righteous man is rescued from trouble, and it comes on the wicked instead. (NIV)
Ps 68:6 God setteth the solitary in families: he bringeth out those which are bound with chains: but the rebellious dwell in a dry land. (KJV)
Haggai 2:21-22 Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying, I will shake the heavens and the earth. And I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms, and I will destroy the strength of the kingdoms of the heathen; and I will overthrow the chariots, and those that ride in them; and the horses and their riders shall come down, everyone by the sword of his brother. (KJV)
Mal 3:6. For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. (KJV)
2 Cor 3:17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
1 Cor 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, for as much as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
A True Story
When he was 7 years old, his family was forced out of their home and he had to work to help support them. When he was nine, his mother died. At 22, he lost his job as a store clerk. He wanted to go to law school but lacked the education. At 23, he went into debt to become a partner in a small store. At 26, his business partner died, leaving him a huge debt that took years to repay.
At 28, after courting a girl for four years, he asked her to marry him and she said no. At 37, on his third try, he was elected to Congress but two years later, he failed to be reelected. At 41, his four years old son died. At 45, he ran for Senate and lost. At 47, he failed as Vice Presidential candidate. At 49, he again ran for the Senate and lost. At 51, he was elected President of the United States.
Many consider that man, Abraham Lincoln, the greatest leader our country has ever had. Lincoln suffered numerous setbacks in his personal life and career but persevered and eventually succeeded.
You will suffer numerous setbacks if you commit yourself to the Lord and try to follow Him. Be prepared for the enemy’s attacks and don’t give up!