Learning Leadership From Nehemiah


I just finished reading through a new study by Gregory Brown and The Bible Teachers Guide on the book of Nehemiah. This particular book in the Bible is a great one to dig into concerning the topic of leadership.

Below is a couple of excerpts from the book. Brown writes,

“The words of Nehemiah son of Hacaliah: In the month of Kislev in the twentieth year, while I was in the citadel of Susa… In the month of Nisan in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when wine was brought for him, I took the wine and gave it to the king. I had not been sad in his presence before. (Nehemiah 1:1; Nehemiah 2:1)

Interpretation Question: What can we learn about godly leadership from the fact that Nehemiah started praying in December (Kislev; 1:1) but approached the king about Israel in April (Nisan; 2:1)?

Godly leaders are patient in waiting on God. It is clear from the text that Nehemiah heard about the problem around November-December (Kislev) and nothing happened until March-April (Nisan). He waited and prayed for four months to be used before God provided an opportunity to talk to the king. It is very possible to get in front of God. I almost wonder if that is what happened with Joseph as he shared his dream to his dad and brothers about them bowing down before him (Gen 37). It was not his time, and it only made his jealous brothers even angrier with him. Consequently, though the vision was true, he suffered for his unwise sharing.

Interpretation Question: What other godly leaders in the Scripture had to wait on God to be used?

The following quote spoke volumes to me…

Many of us have to learn to wait on God. Some of us may be waiting for a vision for what is next, waiting for a godly spouse, waiting to be delivered from a difficult trial. Yes, there is a time to be active, but there is also a time to wait, and we must discern the times. A flower dies if it blooms in winter.

Certainly, we can see that though Nehemiah waited, he was not inactive. He spent day and night in prayer for those four months (Neh 1:6).

This is the normal process for somebody who God is preparing to lead. He sends them into a waiting season, and in this waiting season, he prepares them for greater leadership. Even Christ waited for some thirty years and then forty days in the wilderness before he began his ministry. We should be prepared for this as well. We must learn to wait on God.

Application Question: In what ways has God been teaching you to wait on him? What makes this a difficult lesson to learn?

This book, similar to others in The Bible Teachers Guide, is written in such a way to walk the reader through the text of the Scriptures using the fundamentals of observation, interpretation, and application. The book is a great tool to help the reader understand the context of the book of Nehemiah as well as to help them see how it still very much relates to us today.

We are in desperate need of godly leadership in our day. We need it in our country, in our communities, in our schools, and we need it in our churches. However, most importantly, we need it in our homes.

Brown shares that, “This book can be used as a manual to follow in teaching, a resource to use in preparation for teaching, or simply as an expositional devotional to enrich one’s own study.

This book can be used to take you and others into a study that will be both convicting and encouraging. This would be a great study to be used to mentor young men. I could also see it being used with a father and sons. Of course we ladies are expected to be godly leaders as well! So I also would recommend this study for women and young ladies as well. I know this girl found it enlightening and inspiring!

To learn more about Gregory Brown and the resources available to you through his ministry please check out: his blog. At his blog you will also find a current giveaway available for Nehemiah: Becoming a Godly Leader through Goodreads!