Epistles of Thomas

November 19, 2009

Nehemiah 1-3

Filed under: Old Testament — Thomas @ 19:14
Tags: , , , ,

This book begins with Nehemiah’s discovery that Jerusalem still lies in ruins with her gates burned and wall broken down. In serving as cupbearer to the king he appeared sad and King Artaxerxes asked what was wrong. Nehemiah explained the situation and offered a quick prayer to God before requesting that he be sent to Jerusalem to rebuild the city. The king granted his permission and Nehemiah returned with letters authorising him to rebuild.

“But when Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiah the Ammonite official and Geshem the Arab heard about it, they mocked and ridiculed us. ‘What is this you are doing?’ they asked. ‘Are you rebelling against the king?’ I answered them by saying, ‘The God of heaven will give us success. We his servants will start rebuilding, but as for you, you have no share in Jerusalem or any claim or historic right to it’” (2:19-20). The descendants of these various groups are fighting over Jerusalem to this day. I find it very interesting that 2400+ years ago Nehemiah would make the claim that these other parties have no claim or historic right to the city.
Chapter 3 records the names of the various parties who were instrumental in rebuilding the city walls and gates. No doubt those mentioned were very proud of the job they accomplished and the speed at which it happened.

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