With the wall rebuilt, the people having confessed and repented of their sins—and pledged to follow the word of God—we read in Nehemiah 11 about the repopulation of Jerusalem. Bert walked us through the various reasons Jerusalem had so few people at this time:
- The city had been without a wall for more than 150 years, making it a pretty easy target for enemies.
- Residing in the city was a post of labor, as people needed to constantly keep watch.
- There was great contention with neighboring cities, which had grown and established power and weren’t keen on seeing Jerusalem rebuilt.
- Non-Jews attached a stigma to the city, as we read in Nehemiah 4.
- Moving into the city meant rebuilding your home and business.
- Moving into the city meant a stricter obedience to God’s word.
Given the above, the people weren’t flocking back once the wall was rebuilt. Yet, the city was repopulated. The leaders already lived there, setting the example for others. Some people volunteered, their trust in God so strong that they made the move. The rest of the people cast lots, trusting in God to make the decision. The people understood God’s sovereignty in determining who should occupy the city. The list included laymen, priests, Levites, gatekeepers, temple servants and others—a mix of people whom Nehemiah, as governor, would oversee and delegate to.
And when it comes to occupation, we see that you need prayer, delegation, equity and an ear toward God to see where He is moving.
Bert wrapped his lesson with question—and challenge: Who are you delegating to and training to do what you do? As a table leader, who’s your No. 2? As a father, what are you passing on to your kids? As a Christ follower, who are you sharing the Gospel with?
To accomplish this on own is futile. Our source of strength is in the Lord.