Tasks for this week:

  1. Watch all three parts of Leading Men
  2. Complete daily Bible reading
  3. Memorize Deuteronomy 29:29 and Psalm 101:3-4

Week 28: Day 5

Please watch the last part of Leading Men.

Today’s F260 Bible reading: Nehemiah 5-6

5:1 Then there was a great outcry from the people and their wives against their fellow Jews. 2There were those who said, “With our sons and daughters, we are many. We must obtain grain in order to eat and stay alive.” 3There were others who said, “We are putting up our fields, our vineyards, and our houses as collateral in order to obtain grain during the famine.” 4Then there were those who said, “We have borrowed money to pay our taxes to the king on our fields and our vineyards. 5And now, though we share the same flesh and blood as our fellow countrymen and our children are just like their children, still we have found it necessary to subject our sons and daughters to slavery. Some of our daughters have been subjected to slavery, while we are powerless to help, since our fields and vineyards now belong to other people.” 6I was very angry when I heard their outcry and these complaints. 7I considered these things carefully and then registered a complaint with the wealthy and the officials. I said to them, “Each one of you is seizing the collateral from your own countrymen!” Because of them I called for a great public assembly. 8I said to them, “To the extent possible we have bought back our fellow Jews who had been sold to the Gentiles. But now you yourselves want to sell your own countrymen, so that we can then buy them back!” They were utterly silent, and could find nothing to say. 9Then I said, “The thing that you are doing is wrong! Should you not conduct yourselves in the fear of our God in order to avoid the reproach of the Gentiles who are our enemies? 10Even I and my relatives and my associates are lending them money and grain. But let us abandon this practice of seizing collateral! 11This very day return to them their fields, their vineyards, their olive trees, and their houses, along with the interest that you are exacting from them on the money, the grain, the new wine, and the olive oil.” 12They replied, “We will return these things, and we will no longer demand anything from them. We will do just as you say.” Then I called the priests and made the wealthy and the officials swear to do what had been promised. 13I also shook out my garment, and I said, “In this way may God shake out from his house and his property every person who does not carry out this matter. In this way may he be shaken out and emptied!” All the assembly replied, “So be it!” and they praised the Lord. Then the people did as they had promised. 14From the day that I was appointed governor in the land of Judah, that is, from the twentieth year until the thirty-second year of King Artaxerxes—twelve years in all—neither I nor my relatives ate the food allotted to the governor. 15But the former governors who preceded me had burdened the people and had taken food and wine from them, in addition to 40 shekels of silver. Their associates were also domineering over the people. But I did not behave in this way, due to my fear of God. 16I gave myself to the work on this wall, without even purchasing a field. All my associates were gathered there for the work. 17There were 150 Jews and officials who dined with me routinely, in addition to those who came to us from the nations all around us. 18Every day one ox, six select sheep, and some birds were prepared for me, and every ten days all kinds of wine in abundance. Despite all this I did not require the food allotted to the governor, for the work was demanding on this people. 19Please remember me for good, O my God, for all that I have done for this people. 6:1 When Sanballat, Tobiah, Geshem the Arab, and the rest of our enemies heard that I had rebuilt the wall and no breach remained in it (even though up to that time I had not positioned doors in the gates), 2Sanballat and Geshem sent word to me saying, “Come on! Let’s set up a time to meet together at Kephirim in the plain of Ono.” Now they intended to do me harm. 3So I sent messengers to them saying, “I am engaged in an important work, and I am unable to come down. Why should the work come to a halt when I leave it to come down to you?” 4They contacted me four times in this way, and I responded the same way each time. 5The fifth time that Sanballat sent his assistant to me in this way, he had an open letter in his hand. 6Written in it were the following words: “Among the nations it is rumored (and Geshem has substantiated this) that you and the Jews have intentions of revolting, and for this reason you are building the wall. Furthermore, according to these rumors you are going to become their king. 7You have also established prophets to announce in Jerusalem on your behalf, ‘We have a king in Judah!’ Now the king is going to hear about these rumors. So come on, let’s talk about this.” 8I sent word back to him, “We are not engaged in these activities you are describing. All of this is a figment of your imagination.” 9All of them were wanting to scare us, supposing, “Their hands will grow slack from the work, and it won’t get done.” So now, strengthen my hands! 10Then I went to the house of Shemaiah son of Delaiah, the son of Mehetabel. He was confined to his home. He said, “Let’s set up a time to meet in the house of God, within the temple. Let’s close the doors of the temple, for they are coming to kill you. It will surely be at night that they will come to kill you.” 11But I replied, “Should a man like me run away? Would someone like me flee to the temple in order to save his life? I will not go!” 12I recognized the fact that God had not sent him, for he had spoken the prophecy against me as a hired agent of Tobiah and Sanballat. 13He had been hired to scare me so that I would do this and thereby sin. They would thus bring reproach on me and I would be discredited. 14Remember, O my God, Tobiah and Sanballat in light of these actions of theirs—also Noadiah the prophetess and the other prophets who have been trying to scare me! 15So the wall was completed on the twenty-fifth day of Elul, in just fifty-two days. 16When all our enemies heard and all the nations who were around us saw this, they were greatly disheartened. They knew that this work had been accomplished with the help of our God. 17In those days the aristocrats of Judah repeatedly sent letters to Tobiah, and responses from Tobiah were repeatedly coming to them. 18For many in Judah had sworn allegiance to him, because he was the son-in-law of Shecaniah son of Arah. His son Jonathan had married the daughter of Meshullam son of Berechiah. 19They were telling me about his good deeds and then taking back to him the things I said. Tobiah, on the other hand, sent letters in order to scare me. (NET Bible)

Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible® (NASB),
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973,
1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
Used by permission. www.Lockman.org