4Sanballat was very angry when he learned that we were rebuilding the wall. He flew into a rage and mocked the Jews,H5571H8085H1129H2346H2734H7235H3707H3932H3064 2saying in front of his friends and the Samarian army officers, "What does this bunch of poor, feeble Jews think they're doing? Do they think they can build the wall in a single day by just offering a few sacrifices? Do they actually think they can make something of stones from a rubbish heap—and charred ones at that?"H559H6440H251H2428H8111H559H6213H537H3064H5800H2076H3615H3117H2421H68H6194H6083H8313 3Tobiah the Ammonite, who was standing beside him, remarked, "That stone wall would collapse if even a fox walked along the top of it!"H2900H5984H681H559H1129H7776H5927H6555H68H2346 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!H8085H430H939H7725H2781H7218H5414H961H776H7633 5Do not ignore their guilt. Do not blot out their sins, for they have provoked you to anger here in front of the builders."H3680H5771H2403H4229H6440H3707H1129 6At last the wall was completed to half its height around the entire city, for the people had worked with enthusiasm.H1129H2346H2346H7194H2677H5971H3820H6213 7But 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.H5571H2900H6163H5984H796H8085H2346H3389H724H5927H6555H2490H5640H3966H2734 8They all made plans to come and fight against Jerusalem and throw us into confusion.H7194H3162H935H3898H3389H6213H8442 9But we prayed to our God and guarded the city day and night to protect ourselves.H6419H430H5975H4929H3119H3915H6440 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."H3063H559H3581H5449H3782H7235H6083H3201H1129H2346 11Meanwhile, our enemies were saying, "Before they know what's happening, we will swoop down on them and kill them and end their work."H6862H559H3045H7200H935H8432H8432H2026H4399H7673 12The Jews who lived near the enemy came and told us again and again, "They will come from all directions and attack us!"H3064H3427H681H935H559H6235H6471H4725H7725 13So I placed armed guards behind the lowest parts of the wall in the exposed areas. I stationed the people to stand guard by families, armed with swords, spears, and bows.H5975H8482H4725H310H2346H6706H6708H5975H5971H4940H2719H7420H7198 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!"H7200H6965H559H2715H5461H3499H5971H3372H6440H2142H136H1419H3372H3898H251H1121H1323H802H1004 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.H341H8085H3045H430H6565H6098H6565H7725H2346H376H4399 16But from then on, only half my men worked while the other half stood guard with spears, shields, bows, and coats of mail. The leaders stationed themselves behind the people of JudahH3117H2677H5288H6213H4399H2677H2388H7420H4043H7198H8302H8269H310H1004H3063 17who were building the wall. The laborers carried on their work with one hand supporting their load and one hand holding a weapon.H1129H2346H5375H5447H6006H259H3027H6213H4399H259H2388H7973 18All the builders had a sword belted to their side. The trumpeter stayed with me to sound the alarm.H1129H376H2719H631H4975H1129H8628H7782H681 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.H559H2715H5461H3499H5971H4399H7235H7342H6504H2346H376H7350H251 20When you hear the blast of the trumpet, rush to wherever it is sounding. Then our God will fight for us!"H4725H8085H6963H7782H6908H430H3898 21We worked early and late, from sunrise to sunset. And half the men were always on guard.H6213H4399H2677H2388H7420H5927H7837H3556H3318 22I also told everyone living outside the walls to stay in Jerusalem. That way they and their servants could help with guard duty at night and work during the day.H6256H559H5971H376H5288H3885H8432H3389H3915H4929H4399H3117 23During this time, none of us—not I, nor my relatives, nor my servants, nor the guards who were with me—ever took off our clothes. We carried our weapons with us at all times, even when we went for water.H251H5288H582H4929H310H587H6584H899H376H7973H4325
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