Opposition to the wall is predictable and dangerous. It starts with ridicule, but driven by greed, fear and vested interests, it rapidly accelerates to plans of genocide.
Nehemiah can respond with confidence because he is confident god wants it to happen. I love the boldness that comes from understanding God’s will for you. The narrative flicks into prayer at the point where the plot is discovered. Then they organise and are ready to successfully deflect the attack.
His word of encouragement to the people is not to fear, to remember the Lord’s greatness and to fight for your family. Always the mix of spiritual and practical. What a leadership model!
They organise and finish the wall in a state of extreme readiness for attack. The beautifully economic and vivid prose adds the detail that Nehemiah doesn’t really change clothes until the wall is done: focus.