Journey Through The Scriptures
Lesson 4: The Walls Are Completed
(Scripture to Read: Nehemiah 6:17:5)
The closer Nehemiah came to completing the walls of Jerusalem, the more he was harassed and threatened by the enemies of God. First, his foes tried to lure Nehemiah to Ono, an area at least twenty miles north of Jerusalem, on the pretext of wanting to make peace. But Nehemiah knew there was no good reason for him to leave Jerusalem in the middle of his work, and that his enemies planned to kill him. Their second effort was slander, sending an open letter in which they accused Nehemiah of wanting to make himself king of Judah—a declaration which would have been treasonous to King Artaxerxes of Persia because Jerusalem at this time was a province of Persia.
Nehemiah’s enemies were at least persistent. Their third attempt to bring him down involved paying an “insider” to trick Nehemiah into fleeing into the Temple to save himself from would-be assassins. But Nehemiah knew the Law of God! Only the priests were permitted to go where Nehemiah was told to hide (Numbers 3:10). To go there would have violated the Law and exposed Nehemiah to disgrace and even God’s judgment. Despite all of these efforts, Nehemiah and the people of Jerusalem completed the city’s walls in just fifty-two days! Nehemiah then proceeded to register the people to determine who was eligible to live in the holy city.
- Why were Nehemiah’s enemies so desperate to stop him in any way they could?
- How did Nehemiah know his enemies’ suggestions were subtle tricks?
- Why was completing the walls of Jerusalem in fifty-two days so significant?
- Why did Nehemiah include this long list of names in 7:672?
Something to Think About
Many of us start worthwhile projects that we have every intention of finishing—but finishing is usually the most difficult part of any task! Nehemiah turned to God regularly in prayer, and used his God-given abilities to the full, to finish his assignment. We can do the same to finish the tasks God gives us to do.