Chapter 11 and 12 of Nehemiah reads very much like a family tree. It is giving a record of the names and location and a few personal details of the people living inside Jerusalem and outside Jerusalem during the time of the wall being rebuilt. At Chapter 12: 27 we get some inside information in regards to the dedication of the wall- I loved this section as it spoke about a thanksgiving choir. Wow how many times have we been thankful enough unto God to bring out the thanksgiving choir? This was a group of singers and musicians that sung nothing but thanks to God for His goodness and grace, mercy and love.
Chapter 13 is the section that most intrigued me. It struck a cord in me as I have been in the process of rebuilding some walls of my own. Spiritual walls of safety and protection and trust are very important and whenever there has been a breach or breakdown there is a process to rebuilding. This sections deals with the fortifying of the walls after you have rebuilt or repaired it. You must make sure that you not only keep the enemy out but you must rid the enemy from within. Nehemiah was away for a time and when he returned there were a few things not in order. For one Tobiah (an enemy) had moved into the temple and Nehemiah promptly evicted him and cleaned out the room he had had his possessions in and rededicated that space to God. He gave wages back to the priests so they did not have to go to work to make a living. He took action and dealt with the practice of working on the Sabbath day by closing and guarding the gates- so that those breaking the rules would stop. And finally he dealt with those that had married pagan women of other cultures which was strictly forbidden. They were raising a generation that was more pagan and that did not follow the laws of God.
We must make sure that every place in our lives does not give a small space for the enemy to dwell. We need to kick him out and rededicate that place in our lives to God. Some times due to financial need we the priests of God are too busy working in the fields to tend to the house of God and to perform the duties of the priests of the Lord. He is our first priority and all other things come after Him. He will take care of us. There is also sacred time that belongs to the Lord and many of us have been too busy investing in the things of the world and this has caused many of us to sleep outside of the walls on occasion. We must guard these gates and understand the ramifications of not keeping holy what God calls holy. All of these things have one root in common, those that are married to the world, the secular or pagans are drawn away from the things of God. They will not reproduce seed after their own kind. We must be willing to root out worldly ways that have become established in our lives. We need to reject carnal compromises and refuse evil alliances.
It is not good enough to just rebuild the wall we must make sure to fortify it from the inside out.