Bible Insights

All Progress Faces Opposition

Our Response to Resistance Determines the Outcomes We Realize

In the beginning of the book of Ezra we have the story of Zerubbabel, who under direction of King Cyrus, begins to rebuild the temple in Jerusalem.

His job is a noble one and backed by the full support of the Persian Empire and all that it entails.

Yet things do not go smoothly for Zerubbabel. He faces opposition from his detractors who do not want to see him succeed. They don’t care what the king says, even though he could crush them.

The resistance to Zerubbabel’s temple restoration project starts by stirring up discouragement and trying to make the people afraid. Next they offer bribes to appointed officials in order to thwart the plans and frustrate the work.

To his credit Zerubbabel doesn’t back down. While the easy response would be to cease work, he doesn’t give up. He persists.

He leads his people to complete their work, despite much resistance from those around him and corruption from the government officials over him.

Any time we pursue something good, no matter how much backing we have, we will face opposition and encounter resistance. Sometimes the source of this opposition will surprise us, but it shouldn’t.

We need to accept that this will occur. In fact, we should prepare for it and be ready to rely on God to protect us and help us see our project through to completion.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is Ezra 4-5, and today’s post is on Ezra 4:4-5.]

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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