But Judah said, "The strength of the burden bearers is failing, and there is too much rubbish so that we are unable to work on the wall."
And our enemies said, "They will not know or see anything before we come upon them and kill them and stop the work."
When the Jews who lived near them came, they said to us ten times, "From all the places where they live a they will come up against us." b13
So in the lowest parts of the space behind the wall, in open places, I stationed the people according to their families, c with their swords, their spears, and their bows.
After I looked these things over, I stood up and said to the nobles and the officials and the rest of the people, "Do not be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your kin, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes."
When our enemies heard that their plot was known to us, and that God had frustrated it, we all returned to the wall, each to his work.
From that day on, half of my servants worked on construction, and half held the spears, shields, bows, and body-armor; and the leaders posted themselves behind the whole house of Judah,
who were building the wall. The burden bearers carried their loads in such a way that each labored on the work with one hand and with the other held a weapon.
And each of the builders had his sword strapped at his side while he built. The man who sounded the trumpet was beside me.
And I said to the nobles, the officials, and the rest of the people, "The work is great and widely spread out, and we are separated far from one another on the wall.
Rally to us wherever you hear the sound of the trumpet. Our God will fight for us."
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (New Revised Standard Bible Version Online)