Monday, June 24, 2024

June 24, 2024

It was read in the book of law that the people of Ammon and Moab shouldn’t come into the congregation of Israel because they hadn’t helped Moses and the people during their time in the wilderness. Israel was forced to separate from the mixed multitude. While Nehemiah was back in Babylon for a time, some things went awry in Jerusalem and within the temple. Eliashib had allowed Tobiah, the servant of Sanballat, to take up residence in the temple by clearing out a couple of the storage rooms. Remember, when he began rebuilding the wall, Tobiah and Sanballat gave Nehemiah trouble. Upon his return to Jerusalem, Nehemiah kicked him out of the temple. If that wasn’t bad enough, the Levites were not getting paid as required, so they left their temple duties and returned to the country to provide for their families. Nehemiah gathered them, put them back in their assigned places, and ensured they got paid out of the tithes and offerings. Then, to top everything off, people began to work on the Sabbath, bringing their corn into the city to sell it and making their cattle work when God required them to allow them to rest as well as themselves. Nehemiah made them close the city gates during the Sabbath, not allowing them to sell their products. Nehemiah prayed that God would notice what good he had done. He was worried that he would get punished for everything that had gone wrong. 

When you take a break or step outside of God’s will, you can expect your life to go sideways, which happened when the people did their own thing while Nehemiah was out of town. We must each learn to govern ourselves to do what’s right in the eyes of God because we may not always have someone looking over our shoulders telling us how to live. 

Remember me, O my God, concerning this, and wipe not out my good deeds that I have done for the house of my God, and for the offices thereof. Nehemiah 13:14

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