Strengthening Our Gates

Then I said to them, “You see the trouble we are in, how Jerusalem lies in ruins with its gates burned. Come, let us build the wall of Jerusalem, that we may no longer suffer derision.” And I told them of the hand of my God that had been upon me for good, and also of the words that the king had spoken to me. And they said, “Let us rise up and build.” So they strengthened their hands for the good work. – Nehemiah 2:17-18

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As seen above, the gates were utilized for specific physical functions that helped the people in many ways. These gates also have spiritual meaning: Sheep Gate – Entering to the experience of Salvation; Fish Gate – Bringing new souls the Almighty God; Old Gate – Restoring back to the first teachings and practices of Christ Jesus; Valley Gate – Being with Christ outside of the church walls; Dung Gate – The experience of cleaning to remain effective for the kingdom; Fountain Gate – Depending on the Almighty Father for all things; Water Gate – Word of God leading to spiritual revival; Horse Gate – Our gift to Him is a life of worshiping and praising God now and forever; East Gate – Being called to the glory of God; Miphkad Gate – Expectation of Christ Jesus’ coming.

Spiritual renewal often begins with one person’s vision. Nehemiah had a vision (inspired by God) and he shared it with enthusiasm which inspired Jerusalem’s leaders to rebuild the walls. He saw a problem and was distressed but instead of complaining or wallowing in self-pity and grief, he took action because he knew God wanted him to motivate His chosen people. The walls of Jerusalem were rebuilt and it also maintained the gates. The gates were properly fortified so that they would not be a liability to Jerusalem. Fortifying the walls and the gates of Jerusalem was critical to the people within the walls. If these things were not completed the people would be susceptible to any type of attack. God knew this so he utilized Nehemiah to spearhead the fortifying of the walls and gates. After the wall was rebuilt and the gates secured then the people were able to be more productive and protect themselves better against all enemies. Strengthening the borders of Jerusalem was critical to God’s chosen people present and future as Jerusalem continued to play a factor in the development of God’s chosen people. This is the same approach and action that is needed in reference securing the borders of the United States of America.

Today, our country must strengthen its borders (gates) too. Our country has many vulnerabilities along its borders that need to be strengthened and or rebuilt. Each individual state that forms the borders of our country has responsibilities to protect the core. This is also why it is important for Americans to pay close attention to the governors that they vote for to lead the states that form our borders.

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As soon as our country strengthens its borders, there will be a significant decrease in the illegal importing of drugs, human trafficking, and other negative movements through our borders. It has been proven that current measures are not good enough to properly secure our borders highlighting the fact that there should be more consideration to a one hundred percent military effort. There would be talk of money needed to spearhead this type of movement but it would be well worth it. Rebuilding our border protection (oversight, physical presence, and personnel) is a must and it is priceless. All of the United States enemies know of the weakness of its border and they will continue their efforts against and through our borders as long as the known vulnerabilities are left unpatched. As seen in Nehemiah 6:16, once Jerusalem’s walls and gates were rebuilt they became a mighty force again and once the United States borders are properly secure then it can look forward to growth in many areas that are essential to its military force and civilian way of life. As the borders of our country need to be strengthen, so does the walls of many churches of today. The belief in Christ Jesus throughout our country has helped to maintain divine favor from God and it is this favor that we can’t afford to lose. Contrary to many beliefs, God’s favor is the foundation of our country and the strengthening of church borders is critical to our country continuing to receive God’s favor.

NighttimeWall_1280Our church walls are the faith, belief in Christ Jesus and obedience to the Word of God of the individual churches. Each church has an individual responsibility to stand firm its collective faith, belief in Christ Jesus and obedience to the Word of God. There are numerous churches within Christianity that have allowed their walls to be weakened and or destroyed due to a focus on conforming to the world while also creating distractions within the churches than teaching more of the Word of God. While the Word of God remains unbreakable there are numerous churches that are breaking away from the covering of our Creator because of their actions. These particular churches resemble the temples that were destroyed during the biblical era. They have forsaken the Word of God and created traditions that conform to this generation. As seen in our Bible, it was also a focus on tradition and other distractions that confused the people when Christ Jesus told them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” They were focused on applying a human meaning thus missing the divine message being presented to them. This is similar to the people of today missing the divine purpose of being obedient to the Word of God and not conforming to the changes of the world. This leads to the fact that the rebuilding and or strengthening of the borders of our country and churches start with individuals strengthening their own gates.

The gates of believers are our eyes, ears, mouth and the sexual usage of our bodies. To strengthen our gates we must make a collective effort of rededicating ourselves to the Word of God.

Today, there are too many believers with gates that are vulnerable because of sin and disobedience to the Word of God meaning that they are susceptible to takeover by rulers, authorities, cosmic powers and spiritual forces of evil in heavenly places. Everyone has to strengthen themselves by guarding their gates through faith, belief in Christ Jesus and obedience to the Word of God. Satan is looking for any entry and if believers are not guarding them properly then they become a liability to their families, friends, and the Body of Christ. Guarding our gates comes first through the studying of the Word of God and being led by His Holy Spirit. Spiritual warfare is a 24 hour 7 day a week function and Satan is always searching for someone who is sleeping on duty! Christ Jesus spoke of a strongman and Himself overcoming that strongman to which we need Christ Jesus in our lives every day to prevent that strongman from overcoming us. If we do not strengthen our gates then we are decreasing our opportunity to enter through the narrow gate mentioned by Christ Jesus. The next step in strengthening our gates is acknowledging that we are far from perfection and desire that Christ Jesus empower us with enough strength to assist us in overcoming our daily struggles which will help to rebuild or strengthen our gates. May everyone that believes in Christ Jesus please forge greater efforts to assist our country, churches, neighbors and future believers by strengthening all gates!

Blessings

Calvin Brown
Calvin Brown is an Ordained Non-Denomination minister at Shechaniah River Church in Newport News, Virginia. He retired from the Army in 2009 after serving 20 years as an enlisted Soldier. During his active duty service, he participated in many major military campaigns such as deployments to Somalia, Kuwait, Iraq, and Afghanistan and received numerous awards to include two Bronze Stars. He attained his Bachelors of Arts in Religious Studies at Saint Leo University, Florida. Calvin currently lives in Hampton, Virginia.