There was this guy named Hacaliah. He was born in captivity. He married a fellow captive woman and they had captive kids. Their captive kids were raised under some crazy rules that were not Hacaliah’s family’s true destiny.
You see, Hacaliah was in Persia. He was a Jew, living under the authority of King Artaxerxes. His kids were running around the land of the current day Iran. And then something happened … Hacaliah’s son had a job interview.
His son got the job! He became the official drink-the-liquid-before-the-king-does guy. So, sweet job. You get to hang out with the King and all … but there’s always that chance. Of drinking your last drink.
So Hacaliah’s son was the cup-bearer for the King of Persia. Wow! I believe Hacaliah would be proud of his son, yet a little concerned. And perhaps it wasn’t even a job that people coveted. However, Hacaliah’s son grabbed the job and did it well. So well in fact, he had the ear of King Artaxerxes.
Hacaliah’s son’s name …
There’s an entire book in the Old Testament of the Bible that reveals Nehemiah’s adventures. But more importantly let’s remember his job.
The official drink-the-liquid-before-the-king-does guy.
However, what was truly going on is that the King of Kings had placed Nehemiah in a job that was a little weird and unnerving. Why? For when God wanted His Temple rebuilt in Jerusalem.
Nehemiah, Hacaliah’s son, asked the King of Persia for a vacation. The King of Persia gave him time off … and benefits. The official pass of the King to make it to Jerusalem and lead the effort to rebuild the Temple of God.
Pertaining to today
My brothers and sisters, this is happening today. You have been put in jobs and careers that liken to the drink-the-liquid-before-the-king-does guy. You have some weird environment that is actually preparing you for a rebuilding of His Temple.
But not of bricks and mortar, but of living stones! Our King has called us to take a vacation from the rhythm of this world. He has asked us to join Him on His Eternal Purpose of building a Building, a Temple for His Presence, my brothers and sisters!
When you look at the cup you are drinking at the job you have, remember the son of Hacaliah. Some of his friends told him this:
The remnant there in the province who survived the captivity are in great distress and reproach, and the wall of Jerusalem is broken down and its gates are burned with fire. (Nehemiah 1:3 NASB)
That may be where you are. That may be where your friends came from. That may be where your friends are. A place that is broken down and burned up.
The son of Hacaliah had a very unique, immediate response. It was not a fleshly response. He knew that his identity had been violated from this news. He new the source of His identity. So this is what he did:
When I heard these words, I sat down and wept and mourned for days; and I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven. I said, “I beseech You, O Lord God of heaven, the great and awesome God, who preserves the covenant and lovingkindness for those who love Him and keep His commandments, let Your ear now be attentive and Your eyes open to hear the prayer of Your servant which I am praying before You now, day and night, on behalf of the sons of Israel Your servants, confessing the sins of the sons of Israel which we have sinned against You; I and my father’s house have sinned. We have acted very corruptly against You and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the ordinances which You commanded Your servant Moses.
Remember the word which You commanded Your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful I will scatter you among the peoples; but if you return to Me and keep My commandments and do them, though those of you who have been scattered were in the most remote part of the heavens, I will gather them from there and will bring them to the place where I have chose to cause My name to dwell.’ They are Your servants and Your people whom You redeemed by Your great power and by Your strong hand. (Nehemiah 1:4-10 NASB)
Maybe you feel scattered. Maybe you feel distant from your destiny, from your purpose.
The WONDERFUL news is that the only thing needed is for you to return to Him! He is bringing us to the place where He has chosen to cause His name to dwell.
This place, my brothers and sisters, is His Temple, where we are living stones and Christ is the Cornerstone.
And the commandments of the Old Covenant have been replaced by a New Commandment. Love.
Hacaliah had a son.
His name was Nehemiah. Nehemiah rebuilt the city of Jerusalem with his brothers and sisters by the great power of God and by His strong hand.
I say to you, “Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem so that we will no longer be a reproach.” May we build with Christ, not because of our own will. May His dwelling place be paramount in our lives.
And may His glory shine in our cities!