Nehemiah 1-2: Leadership
August 9, 2020
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
It is hard, if not impossible, to comment on all the good things in these two chapters regarding faith, leadership, and God’s answer to prayer. Note, for example, Nehemiah’s interest in the work of God (1:2). We are always to be interested in how the kingdom is growing and being fruitful all around the world. Then note his personal commitment to God’s work. Having heard of the dire situation, he mourns and is deeply moved (1:4). We are not only to be interested in what is happening, but to realize that we ourselves are involved. When one part of the body suffers, we all suffer. We are all commissioned by God to build his church and seek first his kingdom. Then note Nehemiah’s prayer (1:5-11), which relies for its power upon his understanding of God’s Word and appealing to what God has promised (1:8).
When Nehemiah appears before the king sad (2:1), Nehemiah is already ready. He gives wise answer (2:3), and then offers an “arrow prayer” which appeals immediately to God for help (2:4). He then gives wise answer to the king’s request and provides him with all the details he needs to make a decision on the part of God’s people (2:5-8).
Arriving, Nehemiah then shows that he is not merely a pious man but a wise one, too. He first inspects the situation (2:13-15). There is no substitute for inspecting the situation yourself as a leader. Then, having a good sense of what needs to be done, he calls the leaders and commissions them to go to the task (2:17-18). There is much we can learn, most of all that the God whose hand was upon them would strengthen their hand for the work to come (2:18, 20).
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
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