• Nehemiah was the son of Hacaliah and brother of Hanani; cupbearer to Persian King Artaxerxes (Longimanus) and, later, governor of the Jews, rebuilder of Jerusalemâ??s wall, and writer of the Bible book bearing his name He was a man of feelings and of action. Nehemiah was appointed governor of Jerusalem, but before that, he was a high-ranking official in the Persian court in the city of Shushan. Yet, his life of comfort did not diminish his concern for the welfare of his Jewish brothers in faraway Jerusalem. In fact, the first thing he did when a delegation of Jews from Jerusalem visited Shushan was to ask them about the Jews, those who had escaped, who had been left over of the captivity, and also about Jerusalem.(Nehemiah 1:2) When the visitors responded that the people of Jerusalem were in a very bad plightand that the city wall was broken down, Nehemiah sat down and began to weep and mourn for days. After that he expressed his feelings of sadness in a heartfelt prayer to Jehovah God. (Nehemiah 1:3-11) Why was Nehemiah so sad? Because Jerusalem was the center of Jehovah's worship on earth, and it had been neglected. (1 Kings 11:36) Moreover, the city's broken-down condition was a reflection of the poor spiritual state of its inhabitants.Nehemiah 1:6, 7. Nehemiah's concern for Jerusalem and his compassion for the Jews living there moved him to give of himself. As soon as the Persian king allowed him to take a leave of absence from his duties, Nehemiah began to plan the long trip to Jerusalem. (Nehemiah 2:5, 6) He wanted to give his strength, time, and skills in support of the needed repair work. Within a few days of his arrival, he already had a plan in place for the repair of Jerusalem's entire wall.Nehemiah 2:11-18. Nehemiah divided the huge task of repairing the wall among many families, all of whom worked side by side. The result? With so many workers including parents accompanied by their children giving their time and energy, a seemingly overwhelming task became manageable. (Nehemiah 3:11, 12, 19, 20) Within two action-packed months, the entire wall was repaired! Nehemiah wrote that even those who had opposed the repair work were forced to acknowledge that it was from our God that this work had been done.Nehemiah 6:15, 16. We can learn from his fine example. Nehemiah contributed more than his time and organizational skills. He also used his material means to support true worship. He used his own money to buy back his Jewish brothers from slavery. He lent money without interest. He never "made it heavy" upon the Jews by demanding an allowance as governor, something to which he was entitled. Instead, he kept an open house to feed a hundred and fifty men, and those coming in to us from the nations that were around. Each day he provided "one bull, six select sheep and birds for his guests. In addition, once every ten days he offered them every sort of wine in abundance,all at his own expense.Nehemiah 5:8, 10, 14-18. What an outstanding example of generosity Nehemiah set for all of God's servants then and now! This courageous servant of God freely and willingly used his material means to support the workers so as to advance true worship. Appropriately, he could ask Jehovah: "Do remember . . . O my God, for good, all that I have done in behalf of this people." (Nehemiah 5:19) Surely Jehovah God will do just that.Hebrews 6:10.

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