Just like the people were challenged, motivated, organized and led to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. So were they when it came to their relationship with God. There is no doubt that there were people there who loved God, but we are speaking to the corporate body, the nation of Israel. Yes, there are people in the church who love God, but the church will not change nor be successful in its endeavors unless they, corporately, seek Him.
What did they do? A) They heard the Word of God. You don't know what to repent for if you don't know His Word. B) They repented. They key to their future success was to start right with God. C) They praised and worshipped God. The evidence that A and B works a soul rejoicing because mercy has set it free! D) They received a history lesson reminding them how they got into trouble in the first place. History lessons are not bad as long as you don't live in history.
In verse 36 they admit that their sin got them in the mess that they were in and in verse 37 they make it a matter of public record what they did and repented for! WOW! Can you imagine going down to the local courthouse and making this a matter of public record? I (insert your name here) have given my life to Jesus Christ. I will now live my life under the principles and guidelines of His Word. My attitude and actions are now going to be Christ like. From that point on you could never tell anyone that you were not a Christian or that you didn't believe in the Word of God.