Nehemiah 7:1-73

Keys for getting Started



2nd Shortest man in the Bible Knee Hi Miah /


1st Bildad the Shoe height


In an issue of Focus on the family Magazine they reported the results of a nation wide survey involving Baby Boomers  pp born 1946-1964

A) In the survey people were asked what they look for in a Church: 6 Specific responses were given :


1) Good Music

2) Social groups

3) Big meeting rooms

4) A quality Kitchen

5) Ample parking

6) Clean restrooms


B) That is what Baby boomers are reported to be looking for in a Church

1) Now as I read that I have to admit that I was a bit disappointed –


C) You see I would think that Baby Boomers because of their age, their maturity and accountability would have picked things like this


1) Truthful teaching from God’s word

2) Holy, heartfelt Christ centered worship

3) Honest leadership

4) Involvement in missions around the world

5) Opportunities to serve

6) A good environment to educate our Children



Now The contrast in these two list – reveal a problem: The problem is this:

A) Sometimes in life the things that we are looking for and the things that we need can be very very different.


B) Example some of you after Church today when it comes to lunch – you know what you are looking for

1) Looking for a Big juicy hamburger smothered in onions cheese and Barbecue sauce – along with French fries and a Strawberry Shake


C) That is what you are looking for: What you need? You probably need -

1) A nice Caesar Salad / or a Chicken Breast with some steamed Broccoli


When it comes to Church well what we might be looking for and what we need:

A) There can be a Contrast – a difference


B) You see the things listed on that first list – you can find those at the Kiwanis club –

1) the Rotary club the Knights of Columbus


C) The Primary focus of those groups ? Social interaction –


D) Although the Church can and will involve some social interaction –

1) It is what the Bible calls – FELLOWSHIP

    It involves so much more

In fact the very name Church – Ecclesia in the Grk – it means called out ones

A)The word speaks both of our Origin & our order.


B) Our Origin : Who has called us out ? We have been called out by God!

1) Called out from the World – called out to God Himself !


C) Our Order: We have been called out for this purpose: To Know God and to make Him known !


D)We have been called out To allow God to work in our lives & thru our lives to reach the world for Christ !


Now once we understand our Purpose – we discover that our purpose is best accomplished as we recognize our Priorities

A) Well here in Nehemiah Chapter 7 & 8 we see the Priorities and elements of a better Church.


B) Now some of you might be thinking – wait a minute Nehemiah was written almost 500yrs before the Church even came into existence


1) That is true – however Nehemiah is all about a called out people – that God was seeking to work in and thru { For that reason – great picture of the Church



In the first half of the book, in chapters 1-6, the focus is on reconstruction.

A) The focus is on the rebuilding of the walls – Building and Battling !


B) But the emphasis shifts in chapter 7, as the focal point becomes reinstruction of the People:

1) This is the focus in the rest of the book.


C) We move from rebuilding the city, to rebuilding the people. The Place to start? THE LEADERSHIP


7:1 Then it was, when the wall was built and I had hung the doors, when the gatekeepers, the singers, and the Levites had been appointed,2 that I gave the charge of Jerusalem to my brother Hanani, and Hananiah the leader of the citadel, for he was a faithful man and feared God more than many.


What is the Criteria mentioned here for the appointing of Leaders  2 things are needed: –

A) they need to be Faithful men & men that fear God more than many


B) Consider those two things: Faithful – Men that you can count on

1) You don’t have to wonder if they are going to show up – be there



I read of one church choir director who was being driven out of his mind at the rehearsals for the Christmas  concert. It seemed that at least one or more members of the choir was absent at every rehearsal. Finally they reached the last rehearsal and he announced: "I want to personally thank the pianist for being the only person in this entire church choir to attend each and every rehearsal during the past two months." At this, the pianist rose, bowed, and said,

"It was the least I could do, considering I won't be able to be at the concert tonight."


Integrity is keeping my commitment even if the circumstances when I made the commitment have changed.   -- David Jeremiah


Acts 6:3-4 Summarize the problem:

.3 Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business;4 but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word."

A) The first thing we are told about these guys is that they were to be men who were AMONG THEM!


B)  Reason why when looking for guys who to be Deacons and home group leaders – we look for – who are the guys who are around.

1) Part of their Christian Character is that they  show up – they are already showing an interest in the body / they enjoy being around the Body

C) Good reputation = Blameless – no accusations against them

1) Job – Good worker, good employer – neighbors – good neighbor


D) Full of the Holy Spirit – Exemplify the fruit of the Holy Spirit

1) Men’s who’s lives are marked by a dependency upon the Holy Spirit – In other words they are not trying to do ministry in the flesh – Push open doors


E) Full of Wisdom : Wisdom us the application of Knowledge – Being full of wisdom is knowing how to apply scriptural knowledge to a practical situation.


So the Leaders that Nehemiah picked were men who were Faithful and men who Feared God more than many.

A) There should be in the heart of every leader a fear that they might not accurately represent the Lord


B) We are held to a higher standard –James 3:1 My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment


C) Teachers – Anyone in a position to set an example: Stricter Judgment

1) Therefore – Better have a healthy fear of the Lord – there are many warnings given against causing God’s sheep to stumble –

2) As well as against taking advantage of God’s Sheep

D) So these men were men who were faithful and who feared God

1) Next we are given some insight into their Duty: To Guard and protect the people.


3 And I said to them, "Do not let the gates of Jerusalem be opened until the sun is hot; and while they stand guard, let them shut and bar the doors; and appoint guards from among the inhabitants of Jerusalem, one at his watch station and another in front of his own house."


A tremendous victory had been won - the walls were rebuilt. Yet, they would not protect themselves.

A) Diligent watchmen must be appointed, and they must be guarded.


B)What good are strong new gates if nobody is guarding them and controlling who enters and leaves the city?

1) What good are walls if the gates are open to every foe who wants to enter the city?


C) The Great Wall of China was penetrated by the enemy at least 4 times,& each time the guards were bribed.

1) Gates and walls are only as good as the people who guard them.


D) Part of the Job of the leadership in a Church is to watch out for those who would seek to come in and take advantage of God’s People.

Matt 7:15 "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves

A) The gatekeepers were given specific instructions as to when to open and close the gates (v. 3).


B) To open the gates early in the morning would only invite the enemy to come in while the city was asleep and unprepared.


C) So the Gates were closed at night and only  opened at light – when the sun was Hot

1) Guards were posted



Personal Application

A)How many times has a victory been won in our lives - and later “lost” because there was no guard?


B) An enemy comes in because we are not watching. We are not on Guard.


C) our need to watch at night -    

1)  Evil is done at night -   39million desperate housewives – you


E)  Well after the leaders comes the followers v.4-7




Now the city was large and spacious, but the people in it were few, and the houses were not rebuilt.5 Then my God put it into my heart to gather the nobles, the rulers, and the people, that they might be registered by genealogy. And I found a register of the genealogy of those who had come up in the first return, and found written in it:


6 These are the people of the province who came back from the captivity, of those who had been carried away, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away, and who returned to Jerusalem and Judah, everyone to his city.


7 Those who came with Zerubbabel were Jeshua, Nehemiah


The Building of the walls was important to allow the people of God to live in the city in comfort and Safety

A) But even greater importance were the people who would occupy the city and the Lord takes the time to list them by name


B) They are listed in two places in God’s word – here and in Ezra Ch.2


C) Waste of time – waste of paper – how many trees had to die to make this list

1) Names are important to God – remember in Jr. high – crush on that girl or guy wrote their name on your PeeJee folder over and over – that is what love does –

C) God knows your name – not a number – not a face in the Crowd – knows your name

1) knows your circumstance


D) God in his love is into names

1) The Names are recorded and repeated and remembered because I love them


What made these people extra special was they were people who had a pioneer spirit;

A) Since only about 2% of the Jews who were carried away into exile by the Babylonians came back,


B) the one’s who did have the pioneer spirit are worthy of mention they were willing to endure hardship and discomfort,

1) because they had a call from God that was more important than their own comfort.


C) Life was easier in Babylon, but it was better in Jerusalem!


Some people don’t want to be Pioneers – { The couple in Oregon }– we will come back later once you are more established

A) Challenge to Marc Orosco on the train or part of the engine – Engine


B) Came here to be a part of the engine – the transition

1) Went to Florida to a part of the engine –


C) Marc and his wife Lucia have become Pioneers

1) People who are willing to be pioneers are important in any transition process


The important thing is not to count the people but to realize that these people counted.  Recognized By God

A) Before we move on to the next section it might be good for you to ask yourself this question:


“If I had to prove my genealogy in order to get into God’s city, could I do it?”


B) You are heading for one of two destinies—heaven or hell—and only those who belong to God’s family can enter heaven.

1) You enter God’s family by receiving Jesus Christ as your own Savior, and this alone guarantees your entrance into heaven


C) Your name goes on a list: It goes into a book – the lambs book of life!



So the priorities that make for Proper purpose – there are Leaders – there are followers – those who help pioneer the work

                    And then there are Givers  V. 70-73





70 And some of the heads of the fathers' houses gave to the work. The governor gave to the treasury one thousand gold drachmas, fifty basins, and five hundred and thirty priestly garments.71 Some of the heads of the fathers' houses gave to the treasury of the work twenty thousand gold drachmas, and two thousand two hundred silver minas.

72 And that which the rest of the people gave was twenty thousand gold drachmas, two thousand silver minas, and sixty-seven priestly garments.

73 So the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, some of the people, the Nethinim, and all Israel dwelt in their cities.

When the seventh month came, the children of Israel were in their cities.


Note everyone gave – to different degrees

A) Those who had means gave more { REASON GOD BLESSES SOME PEOPLE –


B)  but they all gave everyone pitched in.


B) God asks all of us to Tithe – Tithe = give a tenth

The Law – No before – Abe to Melch


C) Paul in 1 Cor 16 -  Give as God has prospered you





It happened one time after a pastor had made an appeal in church for a great and worthy cause, that a certain woman, a member of the church, came to him and handed him a check for $50, asking at the same time if her gift was satisfactory. The pastor immediately replied, "If it represents you."  


There was a moment of soul-searching thought and she asked to have the check returned to her. She left with it and a day or two later she returned handing the pastor a check for $5,000 and again asked the same question, "Is my gift satisfactory?"

The pastor gave the same answer as before, "If it represents you."

As before, a truth seemed to be driving deeply. After a few moments of hesitation she took back the check and left.

 Later in the week she came again with a check. That time it was for $50,000. As she placed it in the pastor's hand, she said, "After earnest, prayerful thought, I have come to the conclusion that this gift does represent me and I am happy to give it."

Tithing – required

Mal 3:8

Will a man rob God?

Yet you have robbed Me!

But you say,

'In what way have we robbed You?'

In tithes and offerings.




Now this is a subject we don’t talk about much – sensitive abuses –

A) Tithing is not God’s way of raising funds – but Kids – God is a giver – He wants us to be givers


B) Issued this Challenge - 


Mal 3:10

10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse,

That there may be food in My house,

And try Me now in this,"

Says the LORD of hosts,

"If I will not open for you the windows of heaven

And pour out for you such blessing

That there will not be room enough to receive it.


C) God’s work gets accomplished thru resources that God Provides

1) Children’s ministry – We have workers – but no resources – no curriculum just how affective would we be in ministering to our Kids


C) Worship team: Skilled musicians & singers – but no sound system for them to bless us w/ their gifts & talents

1)God’s resources provide a way to supply God’s people with what is necessary for them to do God’s work




Now when most Churches embark upon a Building project they enlist what is called a Capital Stewardship campaigns – { Not going to do that

A) But a Capital stewardship campaign is where you get the people in the Church to sign an agreement to give such and such an amount each month for so many yrs


B) Now I am not going to say that model is necessarily wrong:

1) In fact a careful study of 2 Corinthians Ch.9 reveals that Paul is writing to the Church in Corinth


C) In that Chapter he is exhorting them to follow thru on their commitment to help out the Church in Jerusalem – they needed to prepare their generous gift.


D)  SO our Capital stewardship campaigns wrong : Not necessarily – but they are not RIGHT FOR US.

1) Pastor Chuck has always taught us – Where God Guides – He Provides


D) I agree with that -  Ps 127:1 Unless the LORD builds the house, They labor in vain who build it;



I learned a valuable Lesson from Pastor Gaylord when I was pasturing in Oregon.

A) In Oregon – for 4 of our 5 yrs we met in a School – Growing more ministries developing – needed more office space w/ small meeting room.


B) So that we could do men’s / women’s / School of ministry.

1) We had been saving – We had a pretty good amount saved


C) Looking at this building – looking at what we were bringing in on a monthly basis – we were going to be about – $1000 short each month

1) I was struggling – based on this principle – where God guides He provides


D) It didn’t seem like God was guiding – we were 1,000 short – but did we need to take a step of faith

1) Called Gaylord – after hearing the situation – he replied – I think that God has already provided – you have  enough saved to secure for at least a year–



When I think about this current building Project - Same is true here – God has Provided –

A) We have been able to save over the yrs – down payment


B) But also God has provided enough people – See if everyone here tithed regularly –

1) we could build these buildings easily in a short period of time




C) Most Churches 10% of the people pay for 90% of the work –

1) Now I don’t know what the percentages are in this Church – I don’t know who gives and who doesn’t – or who gives what – I have no clue


C) But I will say this my prayer is that we wouldn’t be that type of Church

1) All called to give – Those whom God has blessed with means – They would give more .



Jesus commended the widow who gave a mite – ½ penny She was giving all that she had –

A) Someone else could give – 20,000 but if that person is a multi millionaire it is nothing


D)  Areas of Priority: Leadership / Followers – pioneers & Workers / Givers provide resources



Next week Ch.8 – Priority of the word & Worship