Nehemiah 11:1-12:26; 1 Chronicles 9:1-34
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Today in Nehemiah chapter 11 we read about the people of Israel occupying Jerusalem - and not necessarily by their own choice! Lots had to be thrown to determine which 1 out of every 10 people in rural areas would move to Jerusalem. Verses 1 & 2 tell us: "Now the leaders of the people were living in Jerusalem, the holy city, at this time. A tenth of the people from the other towns of Judah and Benjamin were chosen by sacred lots to live there, too, while the rest stayed where they were. And the people commended everyone who volunteered to resettle in Jerusalem." I read an interesting commentary that speculated that some people did not want to move to Jerusalem from the countryside because it would mean they would have to more stringently follow God with their lives. This would be due to social pressures of living in Jerusalem and proximity to the Temple. And this made me wonder - are we like this in our lives today too? Maybe we go through periods of time where we don't go to church because it means we might have to actually start living our lives like Christians due to the community that church provides? I am always worried when I get to points in my life where I don't feel like going to church. It is in those moments that I realize how desperately I need church - and yet how I'm trying to avoid going. I don't want to change some behavior. I don't want people to see me for who I really am. I don't want to be too close to the "Temple"... How about you. If you're called to "move to Jerusalem" by God, will you move? In the words of a famous Switchfoot song, "I dare you to move." Below is a nice map of Jerusalem in Nehemiah's time:
Worship God: Today's readings reminded me of Casting Crowns' song "Voice of Truth." This is such a beautiful song...
Do you know the Voice of Truth? Click here and receive beautiful Truth!
Comments from You: What verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!