Nehemiah 3:14: “Malchijah the son of Rechab, leader of the district of Beth Haccerem, repaired the Refuse Gate; he built it and hung its doors with its bolts and bars.”

August 3rd, 2020 by Pastor Ed in devotional

In 538 BC, the Persian king Cyrus issued a decree that allowed the Jews to return to their homeland. Within 3 years, a group of about 50,000 had returned and begun to rebuild the temple and city. However by 445 BC, 93 years later, Jerusalem was still not a safe place to live. Although the city had been rebuilt, there was no wall around it. And in the ancient world, walls and gates were absolutely necessary for protection. There was danger everywhere: invading armies, marauding bands, and individual thieves. A city couldn’t possibly grow and thrive until it was well protected. In Nehemiah, we find the returned exiles at last rebuilding the gates and the wall.

Down through the centuries, these gates and the connecting wall between them have served as illustrations and lessons for believers. If we do not have sufficient walls and gates in place in our own lives, then we too are easy targets for the enemy to come in and destroy us. This gate in verse 14, called the Dung or Refuse Gate, was an important part of the city of Jerusalem. The Dung Gate was where the filth of the city was carried out. We all need a Refuse Gate.

The apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians, “Therefore, having these promises, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (2 Cor. 7:1). A simple but honest confession to God of our sins is how we get the garbage out of our lives. Confession is our Refuse Gate. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). As we continue to ask God to forgive and change us, He does so from the inside out, enabling us to walk in His commands.

“LORD, forgive our sins. We turn from them and turn to You, in Jesus’ name.”