In Nehemiah, we read of Sanballat, no friend to the returning exiles of Jerusalem, when observing their efforts to rebuild the walls of the city, asked:
“What are these feeble Jews doing? Will they restore it for themselves? Will they sacrifice? Will they finish up in a day? Will they revive the stones out of the heaps of rubbish, and burned ones at that?” (Nehemiah 4:2 ESV)
For the answer, we go to Pastor and Missionary FW Boreham: “‘Will they bring a revival out of rubbish-heap?’ asks Sanballat. Of course. A rubbish-heap is God’s raw material. A revival is His finished product…the Church of Jesus Christ knows how to TRANSFORM this mass of refuse into a field of roses. Paul understood the magic secret. He looked upon the unbridled lust, the grinding tyranny, and the hideous idolatry of the city of the Caesars, and was unabashed. And he gave his reason. The GOSPEL, he said, is the power of God unto TRANSFORMATION. He saw that the foulest filth of Rome might become the fairest fragrance of the New Jerusalem.”
Let this truth take root. Though we were once rubbish-heaps, today we are counted as a ‘pearl of great price’. Where once God looked at us in pity, today He sees only the finished work of His Son.