Monday, November 16, 2009

A King, Part 2

Way back on June 11th, I wrote a post about the definition of a king. He is a person in authority, and given authority for others. Not like Jeroboam who used the people to make him king. I want to point out another example of a good king.

What was Nehemiah's title? Was he a king, a prophet, a governor, a priest? He was appointed governor by King Artaxerxes. On October 9th (Nehemiah 5), the people were crying out, "We have to borrow money to pay the king's tax on our fields and vineyards." Basically, the kings and nobles before had put a high tax on the people so the king could have lots of stuff, but it was so great that the people were selling their children into slavery and their land to pay the tax. Nehemiah does two things that made him a good "king." The first is that didn't take from the people. He cancelled the tax and even though he was entitled to a big meal everyday he didn't take it. "I never demanded the food allotted to the governor, because the demands were heavy on these people (Nehemiah 5:19)." So he didn't make his leadership about him, but he was there for the people.
The second way he was a good 'king' was that he used his authority for others. He is only one who could stop the tax. One lowly Joe-Jew could not stop the tax. Nehemiah was put in charge and given authority to make good decisions for the people. Here he exercises that authority by canceling the tax. "When I heard the outcry and these charges, I was very angry. I pondered in my mind and then accused the nobles and officials (Neh. 5:6)."
Although Nehemiah was not an official royal blood and titled king, he was in a kingly position and acted properly in it. It's interesting to me too that he is the end of the Old Testament. Could this be a foreshadowing of kings to come in the future? Part 3 coming soon.
Funny thing too, listen to what some of the negative accusers say of Nehemiah as they are rebuilding:

"It is reported among the nations...that you and the Jews are plotting a revolt, and therefore you are building the wall. Moreover, according to these reports you are about to become their king..." (Nehemiah 6:5-7)

Now what this guy was saying was false, but his accusers were thinking that Nehemiah was acting like a king. I hope this insight adds to your knowledge.


Teena Phamster said...

Awesome post and insight about kings. I think being a great leader takes true humilty. Nowadays we don't have 'kings' but many people in leadership position...such as presidents, boss', coaches..etc. People are moved by those who care for them as a whole person (heart, body, mind and soul)...and having their best interest in mind.

I remember a great quote from a great basketball coach, John Wooden, 'I rather be in front carrying a banner with the people than behind them with a whip.'

I love the many examples of both good n bad truly grateful for the ultimate King...Jesus Christ. I can devote my heart and time to this king all the days of my life. :-)

Danger Ashley said...

I like the scripture in Timothy where Jesus is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. One of my favorite songs is You are my King (Amazing Love) by Newsboys.