Nehemiah 2 Commentary


The plan of work followed (2:11-3:32)

Rebuilding the broken-down wall was going to mean much hard work. In fact, the task was so huge that some may have said it could not be done. Therefore, before announcing his plans, Nehemiah made a secret survey himself so that he would know exactly how much work was to be done and the amount of materials that would be required (11-16). This first-hand knowledge, together with his account of how God had guided all the events leading up to his return, convinced the people that they should start rebuilding the walls. Opposition, however, seemed inevitable (17-20).

The work was properly planned. Groups of people were allotted work areas side by side around the city, so that the entire wall was built. The list of workers shows that Jews from far and near came to help. Not only builders, but priests, goldsmiths, perfumers, government officials, merchants and young women helped in the work (3:1-16). The Levites repaired the section near the high priest’s house (17-21). Priests and others who were residents of Jerusalem were usually allotted those sections of the wall that were closest to the areas where they lived. People from other regions built the remaining sections (22-32).

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