Tag Archives: Other Centered

Nehemiah’s Response

Being involved in the lives of other people isn’t a new concept. It is something God has intended from the very beginning. In the Old Testament there is a an example of Nehemiah who has found himself living in a foreign land, working for a foreign king, and living a very comfortable lifestyle as a cupbearer.

This is written at a time in Israel’s history where their land, homes, and people have been devastated, destroyed, and in verse Hanani (vs. 2) returns from seeing the devastation and informs Nehemiah of their pain.

1 The words of Nehemiah the son of Hacaliah Now it happened in the month Chislev, in the twentieth year, while I was in Susa the capitol, (the capital of Persia) 2 that Hanani, one of my brothers, and some men from Judah came; and I asked them concerning the Jews who had escaped and had survived the captivity, and about Jerusalem. 3 They said to me, “The remnant there in the province who survived the captivity are in great distress and reproach, and the wall of Jerusalem is broken down and its gates are burned with fire.”

Nehemiah is just a regular guy and this letter is basically his journal and in verse 3 it tells us the physical condition of Jerusalem and the people. They are in distress, scared, they are in a crisis, and the wall of Jerusalem is broken down and gates burned with fire. There is a lack of safety and visually the gates are burned and it reminds them of the pain and loss they have experienced as a people. People have either died, been taken, or ran in fear and look at how Nehemiah responds in verse 4.

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