Scoffing and mocking were just symptoms of an underlying hatred. That hatred would continue to grow into schemes to lure and lie and harm.
Sanballat was very angry when he learned that we were rebuilding the wall. He flew into a rage and mocked the Jews, 2 saying 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?”
3 Tobiah the Ammonite, who was standing beside him, remarked, “That stone wall would collapse if even a fox walked along the top of it!” Nehemiah 4:1-3, NLT
2 So Sanballat and Geshem sent a message asking me to meet them at one of the villages in the plain of Ono.
But I realized they were plotting to harm me, 3 so I replied by sending this message to them: “I am engaged in a great work, so I can’t come. Why should I stop working to come and meet with you?” Nehemiah 6:2-3, NLT
13 They were hoping to intimidate me and make me sin. Then they would be able to accuse and discredit me. Nehemiah 6:13, NLT
19 They kept telling me about Tobiah’s good deeds, and then they told him everything I said. And Tobiah kept sending threatening letters to intimidate me. Nehemiah 6:19, NLT
An enemy’s agenda is always destruction.
How the Jews responded is a testimony of their faith. They worked enthusiastically. They resolved conflict between each other. When one portion was building, the other portion stood guard and protected them.
23 During 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. Nehemiah 4:23, NLT
9 They were just trying to intimidate us, imagining that they could discourage us and stop the work. So I continued the work with even greater determination. Nehemiah 6:9, NLT
Lord, these scriptures from Nehemiah, Psalms and Revelation speak of your sovereignty, might and power. An enemy is hard at work to discourage and destroy.
Sing a new song to the Lord,
for he has done wonderful deeds.
His right hand has won a mighty victory;
his holy arm has shown his saving power!
2 The Lord has announced his victory
and has revealed his righteousness to every nation!
3 He has remembered his promise to love and be faithful to Israel.
The ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God. Psalm 98:1-3, NLT
15 Then everyone—the kings of the earth, the rulers, the generals, the wealthy, the powerful, and every slave and free person—all hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains. 16 And they cried to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of the one who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb. 17 For the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to survive?” Revelation 6:15-17, NLT
May I always remember the victory is yours.