In the first part of Neh 2, we explored how Nehemiah 2 is so passionate about God’s glory being revealed that he left his life in Persia (which was pretty cush) and headed out to get after what God has for him in Jerusalem; to rebuild.  Because of his deep knowledge of scripture he likely knew rebuilding the wall was coming and hard work was ahead.  In the second part, we read about his clear purpose.

Chapters Thus Far:

1 – Nehemiah broken when learns of state of Jerusalem; because he loves God and hurts to see the state of His people and desires to see His promise fulfilled.

2: 1-10 – Nehemiah desires to bring God glory so much he abandons his Persian palace and heads out to do work in Jerusalem.

11 So I arrived in Jerusalem. Three days later, 12 I slipped out during the night, taking only a few others with me. I had not told anyone about the plans God had put in my heart for Jerusalem. We took no pack animals with us except the donkey I was riding…13 to inspect the broken walls and burned gates…16 The city officials did not know I had been out there or what I was doing, for I had not yet said anything to anyone about my plans. I had not yet spoken to the Jewish leaders

Straight to business.  My man arrives and then heads out to assess the situation personally, to take an inventory of how things are, to develop a game plan of what is to be done.  Let’s remember, 4 months passed before he headed out and then 3 days pass before he inspects.  I am not sure the significance of the 3 day wait, but what we observe is a man who is :

  • Faithful (to God and His plan in the world)
  • Patient (able to wait and learn)
  • Personally Committed (left to be there, willing to “roll up his sleeves”)
  • A Planner (seeing for himself the state)
  • Traditional (seems to obey Jewish law)
  • Honest (inspecting the wall himself, honest to the the king about Jerusalem)

I’m really interested in his personal visual inspection of the situation and quite detailed at that.  I did not include the details of v1-16, but it refers to his tracking through various gates and going by foot at a point his donkey could not pass.  As best we can tell, Nehemiah inspects everything personally before he draws up a game plan.

Q: Do I take the time to personally inspect situations?

Q: Do I listen when God inspects (and reveals) situations in my life that need repair?  (Oooooh, Daddy…NOW we are getting somewhere eh?!  I’m thinking this ‘rebuilding project’ may not be just about the wall…)

17 I said to them, “You know very well what trouble we are in. Jerusalem lies in ruins, and its gates have been destroyed by fire. Let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem and end this disgrace!”…18 They replied at once, “Yes, let’s rebuild the wall!” 19 But when Sanballat, Tobiah, and Geshem the Arab heard of our plan, they scoffed contemptuously asking, “Are you rebelling against the King?” 20 I replied, “The God of heaven will help us succeed. We, his servants, will start rebuilding this wall. But you have no share, legal right, or historic claim in Jerusalem.”

The call to rebuild is undeniably clear, has been for awhile, and now the time has come to announce the plans and the reason for it – to end this disgrace (inferring to bring God glory in Jerusalem once again).

And what happens?  Some rejoice and some reject.  Our antagonists (Sanballat, Tobaih, and Geshem) emerge again and we are foreshadowed that aside from the perilous work itself, there will be other, possibly more difficult, challenges to overcome.

But, when it comes to doing the work of God, that is par for the course.

Here is the trippy part of this study, though – for me – paralleling the physical journey of what has taken place with something more personal :

Jerusalem Journey

  1. Jews were in captivity
  2. Returned Home
  3. Some restoration has happened (temple rebuilt)
  4. Lots of restoration is still required (infrastructure around it)
  5. Nehemiah has come
  6. There will be those who encourage
  7. There will be those who discourage

My Journey

  1. I was in captivity
  2. Salvation returned me home
  3. Some restoration has happened (heart changed)
  4. Lots of restoration is still required (circumstance, addiction.)
  5. Jesus / Friends / His word have come
  6. There will be those who encourage
  7. There will be those who discourage

I want to be Nehemiah, not Jerusalem, but unquestionably, God has shown me in Nehemiah 2 which one I am.


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Logan Ramirez

Native San Antonian Logan Seth Ramirez, graduated from Trinity University with a degree in Computer Science , does analytics professionally, and founded San Antonio based Web Design & Hosting company Orange Pulley, LLC. His creative outlets are music and web design and laughing at his favorite Spanish word, cacahuates. Come find me on Google+

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