Saturday, September 24, 2016

Nehemiah-Strength in Teamwork

By Mary Vee
Nehemiah 5

From Nehemiah's Journal

My name is Nehemiah. I have been a servant in Babylon for a long time. I was cupbearer to the king. 

I must admit, the years I'd spent growing up in Babylon as a servant seemed really difficult at the time. My Jewish brothers worked, how we worked to stay alive in the foreign country, to build homes, to please those who had power over us.

After a really rough start back home in Jerusalem, my Jewish brothers and I have found strength and courage. Thanks to God who gave us the ideas, we have made progress on the walls surrounding the city despite the bullying from men who were not Jews.

Half of my men did the work rebuilding the walls, while the other half stood guard with spears, shields, bows, and armor. These guards posted themselves behind all the people of Judah who worked rebuilding the walls. Those who carried rock, mortar, or tools did so with one one hand holding a weapon. Each builder wore his sword at his side. 

I also had a few men with trumpets positioned next to me armed with trumpets. We had designed signals to have specific meanings. The messages were conveyed to the whole city with the trumpet blasts. This way brothers on the west wall would know if trouble happened on the south wall. The team effort made us strong. When the trumpet signal warned of trouble, men from all parts of the city ran to help. We had our confidence in the God who would fight for us.

The trouble didn't stop, though. Our bullies took the challenge to pester us even at night. I ordered the men who worked on the walls during the day to not go home, but to stay inside the city at night and guard against our tormenters. 

A Jerusalem gate. They are not small!! At this point
the men have built these walls half this height.
Photo Courtesy

Neither I, nor my brothers, nor my men, nor the guards with me changed clothes or took time to bathe. Each of us had a weapon, even when we went for water.

Even still our problems were not over. Since the men were working night and day on the wall, there was no one to tend the fields. Food became a problem. 

Come back next time to see what happens.
sources: New International Version, New King James Version 


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