"You see the distress that we are in, how Jerusalem lies waste, and its gates are burned with fire. Come and let us build the wall of Jerusalem, that we may no longer be a reproach." Nehemiah 2:17
Nehemiah was a contemporary of Queen Esther, the prophet Haggai, and Ezra. Nehemiah was a cupbearer to King Artaxerxes. It is possible that Queen Esther persuaded her stepson, Artaxerxes, to give this place of honour and trust to Nehemiah.
News of the trouble and disgrace of the returned exiles in Jerusalem reached Nehemiah. The walls were still broken down and the gates had been burned with fire. Nehemiah sat down, wept, mourned, fasted and prayed. From his regret and repentance, he was led to make a request of the king, to be released to travel to Jerusalem to aid his people in rebuilding the walls of the city. Nehemiah provides us with a proven strategy for success in any venture. This book inspired the launch of Africa Christian Action and it has guided many in how to achieve their goals.
"My people perish for lack of knowledge." Hosea 4:6.
We must be informed. It is when people are informed that they can be inspired to prayer and action. Nehemiah researched amongst the rubble and developed a plan of action.
"Without a vision a people perish." Nehemiah had a vision of a great work and he inspired those around him with that vision.