1 But it came to pass, that when Sanballat heard that we were building the wall, he was angry, and felt great indignation, and mocked the Jews.
2 And he spoke before his brethren and the army of Samaria, and said, What do these feeble Jews? will they fortify themselves? will they sacrifice? will they finish 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, Even that which they build, if a fox should go up, he would even 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 for a spoil 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 we built the wall; and all the wall was joined together to the half of it: for the people had a mind to work.
7 But it came to pass, when Sanballat, and Tobiah, and the Arabians, and the Ammonites, and the Ashdodites, heard that the walls of Jerusalem were set up, and that the breaches began to be closed, then they were very angry,
8 And conspired all of them together to come and to fight against Jerusalem, and to hinder it.
9 Nevertheless we made our prayer to 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 failing, 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, till 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 to us ten times, From all places where ye shall return to us they will be upon you.
13 Therefore I set in the lower places behind the wall, and on the higher places, I even set the people according to their families with their swords, their spears, and their bows.
14 And I looked, and arose, and said to the nobles, and to the rulers, and to the rest of the people, Be ye not afraid of them: remember the Lord, who is great and terrible, 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 to us, and God had brought their counsel to nought, that we returned all of us to the wall, every one to 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 coats of mail; and the rulers were behind all the house of Judah.
17 They who built on the wall, and they that bore burdens, burdened themselves, 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 to 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 there to us: our God shall fight for us.
21 So we laboured in the work: and half of them held the spears from the rising of the morning till the stars appeared.
22 Likewise at the same time said I to the people, Let every one with his servant lodge within Jerusalem, that in the night they may be a guard to us, and labour 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.