Last Friday the guys and I studied chapter 6 of Nehemiah looking to learn some leadership principles. Here’s the links to what we learned in chapter 4 and chapter 5.
Protect Your Time – In verse 6:3 (NLT) Nehemiah says, “I am engaged in a great work, so I can’t come. Why should I stop working to come and meet with you?” Man, I love that statement. The evil political leaders of the land are trying to meet with Nehemiah because they claim to want to work out their differences. But Nehemiah refuses, he was a busy man and didn’t want to stop what he was doing. The work he was doing was the most important thing, and meeting with political leaders who had their own personal agenda didn’t match up with his vision.
Beware of People with an Agenda – As discussed in the principle above, Nehemiah constantly had local leaders who were trying to pull him away from his work. The local political leaders had their own personal agenda they were trying to push and advocate for. The liked things the way there were in Jerusalem, and they didn’t want Nehemiah to do anything that would change that.
When you seek to do great things people gossip – Nehemiah received an open letter (verse 6: 6-7) where one of the political leaders mentioned that he heard rumors about Nehemiah wanting to become King. This was far from the truth, and Nehemiah knew it. But in the letter this political leader said that he heard the rumor, and he talked to a friend about it to see if it was true. Clearly, there some serious gossip going on about the work Nehemiah was doing. Kind of reminds me of Junior High School!
Don’t answer your critics; silence them – It was clear that Nehemiah had many critics of the work he was doing. His “sacred” work for God was seen as a threat to many of the leaders and influential people of that time. When they accused him of having impure motives to want to be King he often did not reply or answer. He only worked with more determination (v 6:9) to complete the wall.