Nehemiah 4-6 21st Century King James Version (KJ21)
4 But it came to pass that when Sanballat heard that we were building the wall, he was wroth and felt great indignation and mocked the Jews.
2 And he spoke before his brethren and the army of Samaria, and said, “What are these feeble Jews doing? Will they fortify themselves? Will they make sacrifice? Will they finish it in a day? Will they revive the stones out of the heaps of the rubbish which are burned?”
3 Now Tobiah the Ammonite was by him, and he said, “Indeed that which they build, if a fox go up, even he shall break down their stone wall.”
4 Hear, O our God, for we are despised; and turn their reproach upon their own head, and give them as a prey in the land of captivity.
5 And cover not their iniquity, and let not their sin be blotted out from before Thee; for they have provoked Thee to anger before the builders.
6 So built we the wall; and all the wall was joined together unto half its height, for the people had a mind to work.
7 But it came to pass that when Sanballat and Tobiah and the Arabians and the Ammonites and the Ashdodites heard that the walls of Jerusalem were being rebuilt, and that the breaches began to be stopped, then they were very wroth,
8 and conspired all of them together to come and to fight against Jerusalem and to hinder it.
9 Nevertheless we made our prayer unto our God, and set a watch against them day and night, because of them.
10 And Judah said, “The strength of the bearers of burdens is decayed, and there is much rubbish, so that we are not able to build the wall.”
11 And our adversaries said, “They shall not know, neither see, until we come in the midst among them and slay them and cause the work to cease.”
12 And it came to pass that when the Jews who dwelt by them came, they said unto us ten times, “From all places whence ye shall return unto us, they will be upon you.”
13 Therefore set I men in the lower places behind the wall, and on the higher places; I even set the people by families with their swords, their spears, and their bows.
14 And I looked, and rose up, and said unto the nobles and to the rulers and to the rest of the people, “Be not ye afraid of them; remember the Lord, who is great and fearsome, and fight for your brethren, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your houses.”
15 And it came to pass, when our enemies heard that it was known unto us and God had brought their counsel to nought, that we returned all of us to the wall, every one unto his work.
16 And it came to pass from that time forth, that the half of my servants wrought in the work, and the other half of them held both the spears, the shields and the bows and the jackets of mail; and the rulers were behind all the house of Judah.
17 Those who built on the wall and those who bore burdens with those who loaded — every one with one of his hands wrought in the work and with the other hand held a weapon.
18 For the builders, every one, had his sword girded by his side, and so built. And he that sounded the trumpet was by me.
19 And I said unto the nobles and to the rulers and to the rest of the people, “The work is great and large, and we are separated upon the wall, one far from another.
20 In what place therefore ye hear the sound of the trumpet, resort ye thither unto us. Our God shall fight for us.”
21 So we labored in the work; and half of them held the spears from the rising of the morning until the stars appeared.
22 Likewise at the same time said I unto the people, “Let every one with his servant lodge within Jerusalem, that in the night they may be a guard to us, and labor in the day.”
23 So neither I, nor my brethren, nor my servants, nor the men of the guard who followed me, none of us, put off our clothes, except that every one put them off for washing.
5 And there was a great cry of the people and of their wives against their brethren the Jews.
2 For there were those who said, “We, our sons and our daughters are many; therefore we take up corn for them, that we may eat and live.”
3 There were some also who said, “We have mortgaged our lands, vineyards, and houses, that we might buy corn because of the dearth.”
4 There were also those who said, “We have borrowed money for the king’s tribute, and that upon our lands and vineyards.
5 Yet now our flesh is as the flesh of our brethren, our children as their children; and lo, we bring into bondage our sons and our daughters to be servants, and some of our daughters are brought unto bondage already; neither is it in our power to redeem them, for other men have our lands and vineyards.”
6 And I was very angry when I heard their cry and these words.
7 Then I consulted with myself, and I rebuked the nobles and the rulers and said unto them, “Ye exact usury, every one from his brother.” And I set a great assembly against them.
8 And I said unto them, “We, according to our ability, have redeemed our brethren the Jews who were sold unto the heathen. And will ye even sell your brethren? Or shall they be sold unto us?” Then they held their peace, and found nothing to answer.
9 Also I said, “It is not good what ye do. Ought ye not to walk in the fear of our God because of the reproach of the heathen, our enemies?
10 I likewise, and my brethren and my servants, might exact from them money and corn; I pray you, let us leave off this usury.
11 Restore, I pray you, to them even this day their lands, their vineyards, their oliveyards, and their houses, also the hundredth part of the money and of the corn, the wine, and the oil that ye exact from them.”
12 Then said they, “We will restore them, and will require nothing of them. So will we do as thou sayest.” Then I called the priests and took an oath from them, that they should do according to this promise.
13 Also I shook my lap, and said, “So God shake out every man from his house and from his labor who performeth not this promise; eventhus be he shaken out and emptied.” And all the congregation said, “Amen,” and praised the Lord. And the people did according to this promise.
14 Moreover, from the time that I was appointed to be their governor in the land of Judah, from the twentieth year even unto the two and thirtieth year of Artaxerxes the king (that is, twelve years), I and my brethren have not eaten the bread of the governor.
15 But the former governors who had been before me were chargeable unto the people, and had taken from them bread and wine, besides forty shekels of silver. Yea, even their servants ruled over the people, but so did I not, because of the fear of God.
16 Yea, also I continued in the work of this wall, neither bought we any land; and all my servants were gathered thither for the work.
17 Moreover there were at my table a hundred and fifty of the Jews and rulers, besides those who came unto us from among the heathen who are about us.
18 Now that which was prepared for me daily was one ox and six choice sheep; also fowls were prepared for me, and once in ten days, a store of all sorts of wine; yet for all this I required not the bread of the governor, because the bondage was heavy upon this people.
19 Think upon me, my God, for good, according to all that I have done for this people.
6 Now it came to pass, when Sanballat and Tobiah and Geshem the Arabian and the rest of our enemies heard that I had built the wall and that there was no breach left therein (though at that time I had not set up the doors upon the gates),
2 that Sanballat and Geshem sent unto me, saying, “Come, let us meet together in one of the villages in the plain of Ono.” But they thought to do me mischief.
3 And I sent messengers unto them, saying, “I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down. Why should the work cease, whilst I leave it and come down to you?”
4 Yet they sent unto me four times in this manner, and I answered them in the same manner.
5 Then Sanballat sent his servant unto me in like manner the fifth time with an open letter in his hand,
6 wherein was written: “It is reported among the heathen, and Geshem saith it, that thou and the Jews think to rebel; for which cause thou buildest the wall, that thou mayest be their king according to these words.
7 And thou hast also appointed prophets to preach of thee at Jerusalem, saying, ‘There is a king in Judah!’ And now shall it be reported to the king according to these words. Come now therefore, and let us take counsel together.”
8 Then I sent unto him, saying, “There are no such things done as thou sayest, but thou feignest them out of thine own heart.”
9 For they all made us afraid, saying, “Their hands shall be weakened from the work, that it be not done.” Now therefore, O God, strengthen my hands.
10 Afterward I came unto the house of Shemaiah the son of Delaiah the son of Mehetabeel, who was shut up; and he said, “Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple, and let us shut the doors of the temple; for they will come to slay thee, yea, in the night will they come to slay thee.”
11 And I said, “Should such a man as I flee? And who is there that, being as I am, would go into the temple to save his life? I will not go in.”
12 And lo, I perceived that God had not sent him, but that he pronounced this prophecy against me; for Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him.
13 Therefore was he hired, that I should be afraid, and do so, and sin, and that they might have cause for an evil report, that they might reproach me.
14 My God, think Thou upon Tobiah and Sanballat according to these their works, and on the prophetess Noadiah and the rest of the prophets who would have put me in fear.
15 So the wall was finished in the twenty and fifth day of the month of Elul, in fifty and two days.
16 And it came to pass that when all our enemies heard thereof, and all the heathen who were about us saw these things, they were much cast down in their own eyes; for they perceived that this work was wrought by our God.
17 Moreover in those days the nobles of Judah sent many letters unto Tobiah, and the letters of Tobiah came unto them.
18 For there were many in Judah sworn unto him, because he was the son-in-law of Shechaniah the son of Arah, and his son Jehohanan had taken the daughter of Meshullam the son of Berechiah.
19 Also they reported his good deeds before me, and uttered my words to him. And Tobiah sent letters to put me in fear.