Nehemiah 4:1-23, NLT
Enemies Oppose the Rebuilding
1*4:1 Verses 4:1-6 are numbered 3:33-38 in Hebrew text.Sanballat was very angry when he learned that we were rebuilding the wall. He flew into a rage and mocked the Jews,
3Tobiah the Ammonite, who was standing beside him, remarked, “That stone wall would collapse if even a fox walked along the top of it!”
4Then I prayed, “Hear us, our God, for we are being mocked. May their scoffing fall back on their own heads, and may they themselves become captives in a foreign land!
6At last the wall was completed to half its height around the entire city, for the people had worked with enthusiasm.
7*4:7 Verses 4:7-23 are numbered 4:1-17 in Hebrew text.But when Sanballat and Tobiah and the Arabs, Ammonites, and Ashdodites heard that the work was going ahead and that the gaps in the wall of Jerusalem were being repaired, they were furious.
10Then the people of Judah began to complain, “The workers are getting tired, and there is so much rubble to be moved. We will never be able to build the wall by ourselves.”
11Meanwhile, our enemies were saying, “Before they know what’s happening, we will swoop down on them and kill them and end their work.”
12The Jews who lived near the enemy came and told us again and again, “They will come from all directions and attack us!”*4:12 The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain.
14Then as I looked over the situation, I called together the nobles and the rest of the people and said to them, “Don’t be afraid of the enemy! Remember the Lord, who is great and glorious, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes!”
15When our enemies heard that we knew of their plans and that God had frustrated them, we all returned to our work on the wall.
19Then I explained to the nobles and officials and all the people, “The work is very spread out, and we are widely separated from each other along the wall.
21We worked early and late, from sunrise to sunset. And half the men were always on guard.