We alone will build it for the Lord, the God of Israel, as King Cyrus, the king of Persia, commanded us. (Ezra 4:3)

THE MAN WAS VERY POPULAR as teacher of his Sunday school class. However, the pastor of the church learned that he was living an immoral life and immediately removed him from his position. Some very unhappy people in the church objected, possibly because they did not know of his lifestyle or did not believe the rumors.

The Jews had just celebrated the laying of the foundation for the temple after returning from captivity. When the people around Jerusalem offered to help, the leaders refused and said that King Cyrus had commanded them to be the ones to build. They may have been suspicious of the volunteers’ motives. The context suggests that these volunteers did not want to see Judah rebuild again at all, but really hoped to disrupt the work in some way. Verse one calls them “enemies.”

Whether building a temple for the Lord or building Christian lives through lessons in a classroom, we need the right people in the right places to be most effective. We cannot afford to use those who are bad examples of the very concepts we want to convey.

Let’s pray that those in leadership will have wisdom to choose the right people as leaders or helpers in our churches. As we pray, “Thy kingdom come on earth,” may God’s will be done in choosing kingdom partners.

Pray for godly leaders.

Edwin Wiles is a retired science instructor from Kernersville Wesleyan and Surry Community Colleges. He enjoys his wife and family, reading, photography, gardening, and his church family.

© 2018 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.