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Leadership 101 #1

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Leadership 101:


Text: Nehemiah

Thesis: To prove that a godly leader is a motivated person.


(1)    There is a leadership breakdown today in our world (e.g., Enron, Clinton).

(2)    There are a plethora of books available on the subject; however, the classic was written around 425 B.C. (i.e., Nehemiah).

(3)    There are several lessons on leadership from Nehemiah; today, we will look at the role that motivation plays in leadership.

(4)    A person once said to TDR, “Mr. Roosevelt, you are a great man!”  He replied, “No, Teddy Roosevelt is simply a plain, ordinary man – highly motivated.”


I.                    What is motivation?

A.     Webster’s defines “motive” as “some inner drive, impulse, intention, etc. that causes a person to do something or act in a certain way; incentive; goal.”

B.     Let us see this word defined in the life of Nehemiah:

1.      The situation of the day –

a.       Medo-Persian empire is now in control after the Babylonian captivity of Israel

b.      Cyrus has decreed that the Jews may return to Jerusalem

c.       Nehemiah is a cupbearer for King Artaxerxes

2.      Nehemiah was motivated to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.

a.       He was moved with emotion at the news of the destruction (1:3-4).

b.      He went to God in prayer about the situation for an opportunity to do something (1:5-11).

c.       He went to inspect the walls (2:11-15).

d.      He called upon the people to rebuild (2:16-18).

II.                 What is our motivation?

A.     For Nehemiah, it was the power and promises of God (Neh. 1:8-10).

B.     For us, it must be the same.

1.      With God, all things are possible (Matt. 19:26).

2.      We should want for the church what God wants for it.

a.       We should be motivated to reach out to others.

b.      We should be motivated to grow.

c.       We should be motivated to speak out against evil.

d.      We should be motivated to do what ever we can do to glorify God in the church.

III.       Why do some people lack motivation?

A.     Apathy

B.     Contentment

C.     Laziness



(1)   Christ was motivated to do something about our condition because of love.

(2)   Because of His love, we need to be motivated to do something about our condition also.

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