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Bible Commentaries

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Nehemiah 6

Verses 1-19

Nehemiah 6:6 . Thou mayest be king. Sanballat accused this very old man of a crime that was in his own heart, had he but seen an opening, for he kept a standing army in Samaria.

Nehemiah 6:7 . There is a king in Judah. The hostile governors thought to intimidate and unman the governor, by charges of high treason. They construed those who conducted the public worship, to flatter Nehemiah with regal dignity.

Nehemiah 6:10 . Mehetabeel who was shut up, as an ascetic. This religious traitor endeavoured to work on the fears of the governor, to save his life by hiding in the sanctuary. Noadiah and others seconded his views. What a reproach must they have brought on themselves by their venality!

Nehemiah 6:15 . The wall was finished in fifty and two days. No work is done like that which is done with a willing heart.


Wisdom is better than might; but here the courage of the governor equalled his years, and is worthy the imitation of christians. The answer he gave his enemies is very proper for us, when attacked by the temptations of Satan. He was employed in a great work; the business of religion is the most important of all; let it not cease that we may go into bad company, either for the sake of compliment or ceremony. Shall we flee, who profess the religion of Jesus, and are his by solemn engagements? We who have families that will be influenced by our example? Let us be resolute that we will neither do that which is evil, nor decline that which is good, on account of any solicitation or importunity whatever.

When any attempts are made to weaken our hands, let us earnestly pray that God would strengthen them. This is a proper petition when we are entering upon duty, when surrounded by enemies, when temptations present themselves, especially at a time when iniquity abounds, and the love of many waxes cold. We have need of strength to stand resolute; it is a great comfort to reflect that God is able and willing to strengthen us, and that those who come to the throne of grace shall find grace in time of need. Stedfastness and resolution in a good work will overcome all difficulties, and at last be crowned with success. Had Nehemiah been discouraged and intimidated by these various artifices, the rising glory of Jerusalem had been covered with a cloud. Had he fled to the temple, and shut himself up there; it would have been taken as a proof of guilt, and would have proved the ruin of himself and his work; but his stedfastness brought the work to perfection. Let those who are desirous to serve God themselves, and promote the interests of religion, be resolute in the good cause. Let no allurements draw them aside, let no threatenings or banters dishearten them, and let us all learn from this example, to be stedfast and unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as we know that our labour is not in vain in the Lord. 1 Corinthians 15:58.

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Bibliographical Information
Sutcliffe, Joseph. "Commentary on Nehemiah 6". Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments. 1835.