Rebuked The Nobles

Rebuked The Nobles by Kirk Hunt

After serious thought, I rebuked the nobles and rulers, and said to them, “Each of you is exacting usury from his brother.” So I called a great assembly against them. And I said to them, “According to our ability we have redeemed our Jewish brethren who were sold to the nations. Now indeed, will you even sell your brethren? Or should they be sold to us?”

Then they were silenced and found nothing to say.

Nehemiah 5:7-8 NKJV
Full account: Nehemiah 5:1-13

Nehemiah confronted the worst enemies of the emancipated Jews: Jewish nobility and rulers. In a great assembly of the people, Nehemiah publicly rebuked the nobles and rulers for their criminal behavior. Their crimes? Using usury to steal the homes and farms of other Jews and sell Jewish men and women into slavery.

The rich and powerful exploit the poor and weak before Nehemiah’s era. Current events have taught us that greed for money and lust for power still leads people down the same shameful roads. Still, what are you doing about it?

As one of God’s people, you have the calling and purpose of standing up against domestic enemies. It may lead to an uncomfortable public confrontation. I cannot guarantee you that the wrongdoers will repent or become silent.

Nehemiah publicly rebuked the nobles who callously enslaved neighbors and countrymen. How are you going to stand against domestic enemies? Your friends and family are looking to see how you will live out God’s righteousness.

Think: Should I be rebuked as a domestic enemy? How can I help to make things right?

Pray: “Lord, help me to restore men and women in Your righteousness.

Copyright © January 2021, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Bad Princes

Bad Princes By Kirk Hunt

Neither our kings nor our princes,
Our priests nor our fathers,
Have kept Your law,
Nor heeded Your commandments and Your testimonies,

 Nehemiah 9:34 NKJV

 

Nehemiah spent a lot of his time and energy getting national leadership to do the right thing.  The Hebrew word for “princes” (see Strong’s 8269) refers to a “chief (captain), general, governor.”  Nehemiah first called to repentance the very people who should have been the best behaved.  God’s Law was not inadequate or incomplete.  They chose to ignore or violate the Law to line their pockets and fill their purses.

 

Nehemiah faced widespread corruption among those who knew better.  The leaders were supposed to respond according to the Law.  The leaders became rich while the “regular folk” became poor, or in some cases, literal slaves.  The problem was not pagan outsiders.  The problem was greedy or immoral insiders.  Nor could they claim they “did not know.”

 

Modern “princes” include more than members of Congress or State legislatures.  Relatively senior members of the Judicial, Legislative or Executive Branches of government, State or National, are “princes.”  The higher-ranking leaders of Corporations and other Commercial Interests are also “princes” by this definition.  If you have a higher rank, and/or a higher paycheck, you are included in this group.  

 

It is easy to blame foreign strangers.  It is harder work to hold insiders of rank and privilege accountable.  The problem is rarely a marauding outsider.  Much more likely, the problem is an insider who is supposed to be the solution.  

 

If you want compliance with God’s Law, as expressed in Scripture, then you have to get involved.  Do not let a “prince” claim they “did not know.”  Even “princes” can be held accountable, if you have the courage to call them on their unrighteousness. 

 

Think:        It is easy to blame others.  Usually, the problem starts among ourselves.

Pray:           “Lord, help me, and my leadership, to obey Your Scripture.”

 

Copyright © September 2016, Kirk Hunt

 

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press.  You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

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Appoint Over This Business

Appoint Over This Business By Kirk Hunt

 

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

Acts 6: 3 NKJV

 

Can you be impartial yet considerate?  Can you serve others honestly and graciously?  Should we appoint you to important work?

 

The widows needed the distribution.  No one suggested otherwise.  Still, whose hands and feet would conduct the business effectively and joyously?  Whose head and heart would conduct the business with compassion and efficiency?

 

I am certain there were several Spirit-filled believers available who did not make the standard.  Good reputation requires time and focus doing the right things.  Wisdom comes from God, and from the hard work of seeking wisdom.  Salvation alone is not a passkey to all jobs.

 

Salvation opens the door to God’s work and benefit in your life.  God could instantaneously and radically transform your qualifications.  Typically, the Holy Spirit makes possible the long and sweat-soaked road to new abilities and characteristics. 

 

It is possible to be full of the Holy Spirit and have a less-than-good reputation.  Being saved does not automatically fill you with wisdom.  Because God gives us free-will, you and I get to choose. 

 

You choose your reputation and wisdom.  If you are filled with the Holy Spirit, then you have God’s power to carry you forward.  Still, you must make the choices, and do the work, that qualifies you for your appointment.

 

Think:        Am I qualified to be appointed over business in God’s Kingdom?

 

Pray:           “Lord, help me be qualified to serve your Kingdom.”

 

 

Copyright © September 2016, Kirk Hunt

 

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press.  You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

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