Ezra and Nehemiah are two of my favorite books in the Old Testament due to representing a joint project between Church and Market Place for the Kingdom of God. Ezra was a priest and Nehemiah was a businessman; these two led Judah in rebuilding Jerusalem under the reign of Cyrus.
People from Judah were given permission to return and assist in the reconstruction; however they weren’t forced to. Those who chose not to return were expected to assist those who did return.
Cyrus supplied those who returned with material and even some of “articles of the house of the Lord” that had been taken away.
Those who didn’t return had found themselves in a comfort zone in Babylon and opted to stay.
How many saints of God have made similar choices in selecting to stay in the comfort zones of the world, rather than being involved in the work of the Kingdom? When those choices are made there are long and short term consequences.
Also, we see a transfer of wealth from Babylon to Judah for the work of the Lord. It is my opinion that before the Lord returns, there will be a similar kind of transfer of wealth to finance many mission and evangelistic efforts on a global scale. As a friend of mine asks when blessed, “is this return on seed sown or is this seed to be sown?”
We can’t receive a return if there hasn’t been any sowing taking place. Sow to the Spirit!