Vs. 5, “and I answered the king, “If it pleases the king and if your servant has found favor in his sight, let him send me to the city in Judah where my fathers are buried so that I can rebuild it.” Four months would pass as Nehemiah would patiently wait and the sadness of his heart would weigh heavy. He would ask the Persian king Artaxerxes if he may go to Jerusalem to help the rebuilding process. Upon arriving to Jerusalem, Nehemiah would take wisely scout the area by night to not stir any possible response from Israel’s enemies. Without doubt or fear, he would press on to challenge the people to help him build.
Regarding application…Ridicule. Vs. 19, “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.” This same type of opposition and ridicule came in Ezra’s time, but Nehemiah would hold steadfast. It’s not easy to do any task when people belittle you along the way. This is a mean sin-filled world and we must learn to not allow ridicule to bring us down. Growing up in a little farming town, I often was the subject of ridicule. While it’s not as obvious as we grow up, people still find ways to ridicule, gossip and slander others. Whether it’s a form of jealousy or envy…or just the enemy outright trying to discourage, we must stand up for what we believe in.