by Dan Goddard
(Nehemiah 4:1-23) The historical context for this text is that the Jewish people had been taken as captives to Babylon many years prior, as a consequence for turning from God. Once their prophesied time of captivity was over, groups of exiles began to return to Israel to reoccupy the land, rebuild the temple and the walls of Jerusalem.
The first group of exiles (recorded in scripture) returned around 538 BC led by Zerubbabel. Ezra followed with a group around 458 BC. Finally, Nehemiah returned with a group to rebuild the walls in 445 BC.
They were but a very small remnant of who they had once been, and who they were called to be… but they had been chosen by God to do the impossible! In the truest sense, they were chosen to fulfill and write prophetic history. Not bad for a bunch of ex slaves!
Our text reveals some very clear steps to restoration that I believe are a prophetic call and blueprint for our generation. When I speak of restoration, I am speaking of bringing the ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ to earth as Jesus did.
Steps to building and establishing:
- Make the Vision and Purpose Clear.
- Know your place and gifting.
- Find your Tribe and Family
- *Make it very personal! An abstract purpose will always result in halfheartedness in battle.
- Maintain clear lines of communication, so that you always stay united in Vision and Purpose.
Q? Do I have a clear vision and purpose for my life? If so, write it down. If not, ask Holy Spirit to reveal what is holding me back. Then begin the process of discovering Father’s purpose for putting me here on earth.
Q? Do I know my place in God’s Kingdom of restoration? If yes, then write it down. If no, ask Holy Spirit to reveal to me my place and the gifts that He has given me to build with. Then take the necessary steps to develop those gifts, and begin to step into my place as a co-laborer with Christ.
Q? Have I found my Family/Tribe that I know I am meant to belong to? If yes, Yeah!!!! Tell them how much I love them and believe in them. If no, ask Holy Spirit to show me what is holding me back from pursuing these crucial relationships? Write down what He shows me, and begin to pursue finding a community to join my heart to.
Q? Is it clear to me what I am contending for and what I am called to build? If yes, write it down and celebrate. If not, ask Holy Spirit to show me where and why I may be confused, passive or halfhearted and unable to deeply engage. Write down what He shows me, then do whatever it takes to get healed and free to run my race with strength and passion.
Q? Am I a clear and consistent communicator with my Tribe/Family? If yes, pat myself on the back and keep it up. If not, ask Holy Spirit why not? Write down what He reveals and repent.
**Read (Isaiah 61:1-4). Then write a 1 page essay on the relationship between (Nehemiah 4:1-23) & (Isaiah 61:1-4). Also write down in this essay how these two texts apply to my life at this time.