Time with Nehemiah – The Rebuilding


Nehemiah was ready to build, and did so in a divine rhythm. He started with the Sheep Gate, the place where the animal sacrifices where first brought, then he moved the wall to the two military towers. He started building the holiness defense first, then the physical defense. For God, then against man. The walls were important to the people – politically, social, religiously – of the city. It was a sign of God’s favor, His grace, His protection. The ruined walls had stood as a testament to the people for a generation or more that Jerusalem was no longer under the protection of God, but was upon for all to pass by and laugh upon her. Nehemiah had most likely lived within walls all his life, and knew the military importance, as well as the placating force, of them; however, he also know that God’s sacrifices must come first. Before they could hope to have the walls mean anything, they must return the city to a holiness before God.

As they began to rebuild, people from the surrounding areas came to help. Leaders, workers, Jews, Gentiles, government officials, even a maker of perfumes began to help. Men, and even women, helped with seemingly no dissemination between them. Each group of workers had their assigned place, some even working in front of their own homes.

The work didn’t stop here, drawing in help from all over, people returning to build up God’s city, and to refortify His walls. The rebuilding had begun.

Joel L. Watts
Joel L. Watts holds a Masters of Arts from United Theological Seminary with a focus in literary and rhetorical criticism of the New Testament. He is currently a Ph.D. student at the University of the Free State, analyzing Paul’s model of atonement in Galatians. He is the author of Mimetic Criticism of the Gospel of Mark: Introduction and Commentary (Wipf and Stock, 2013), a co-editor and contributor to From Fear to Faith: Stories of Hitting Spiritual Walls (Energion, 2013), and Praying in God's Theater, Meditations on the Book of Revelation (Wipf and Stock, 2014).

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