Monday, January 6, 2020

READ IT! - Introduction to Nehemiah 1-6

Readings for this week

Monday: Ezra 10
Tuesday: Nehemiah 1
Wednesday: Nehemiah 2
Thursday: Nehemiah 3
Friday: Nehemiah 4
Saturday: Nehemiah 5
Sunday: Nehemiah 6

Introduction to Nehemiah 1-6

The books of Ezra and Nehemiah were originally one united work written during Persian dominance over the world.


Ezra 1:1–6:22 – Rebuilding the Temple
Ezra 7:1–10:44 – Reforming the Community
Nehemiah 1:1–7:73 – Rebuilding the city wall
Nehemiah 8:1–10:39 – Hearing and doing the Law
Nehemiah 11:1–13:31 – Further reforms by Nehemiah

Chapters 1-6

In the second half of this unified work, we see the character of Nehemiah introduced. He was a contemporary of Ezra and was cupbearer to King Artaxerxes of Persia.

At this point, Jerusalem had not yet been rebuilt, and so the Book of Nehemiah focuses mainly on the rebuilding of Jerusalem’s walls, and King Artaxerxes grants Nehemiah special permission to return to Jerusalem with another wave of exiles to rebuild the walls.

But unfortunately, some opposition arises to this work as well. Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiah the Ammonite and Gesham the Arab are the chief opposition. Sanballat and Tobiah mock and threaten the builders, and so Nehemiah posts guards and tells the people to carry a shovel in one hand and in the other hand a spear.

Sanballat, Tobiah, and Gesham invite Nehemiah over for a meal, but Nehemiah knows it’s a trap.

They also write a letter to Nehemiah, saying that pretty soon the people of Jerusalem will proclaim someone king and Artaxerxes will be jealous. But Nehemiah says, “…you are just making it up out of your head.”

They also hire a false prophet to tell Nehemiah to run away and hide, but Nehemiah doesn’t fall for it.

The wall was amazingly completed in only 52 days.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comments!