Passage: Nehemiah 11:1~36  

Key verse: 2

Most people who returned from exile lived in ancestral hometowns. As a result, only the leaders of people, who were few, lived in the city of Jerusalem (7:4). After the completion of the wall, Nehemiah saw the need to bring in more people to restore the city as a spiritual center. They solved the issue by casting lots and assigning every tenth person to move into the city (1).

Nehemiah records the names of leaders among the Jerusalem residents in verses 7-19. Most of these names are unfamiliar to us. Yet, they were each commendable in their lives of sacrifice. They gave up living in their ancestral property to be the stewards in the city of God (2). Following God means giving up personal desire and comfort to take God's will and purpose as a priority. Even if their names have been mostly forgotten in human history, God does not forget what they had done. (Hebrews 6:10)

As the city gained enough residents to occupy the city along with the priests, Levites, and gatekeepers, Jerusalem restored its most essential function, that is to worship the LORD.

Prayer: Father, thank you for giving us the privilege of living as your children in this world. You are the author and LORD of our lives. Help us overcome our selfish desire and follow your will and serve your work.

One Word: Live to serve the LORD