Webster Bible Translation
The Work is Ridiculed
1But it came to pass that when Sanballat heard that we were building the wall, he was wroth, and took great indignation, and mocked the Jews. 2And 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 make an end in a day? will they revive the stones out of the heaps of the rubbish which are burned? 3Now 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.
4Hear, O our God; for we are despised: and turn their reproach upon their own head, and give them for a prey in the land of captivity: 5And 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.
6So we built the wall; and all the wall was joined together to the half of it, for the people had a mind to work.
7But 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 stopped, then they were very wroth, 8And conspired all of them together to come and to fight against Jerusalem, and to hinder it.
9Nevertheless we made our prayer to our God, and set a watch against them day and night, because of them.
10And Judah said, The strength of the bearers of burdens is decayed, and there is much rubbish; so that we are not able to build the wall.
11And 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. 12And it came to pass, that when the Jews who dwelt by them came, they said to us ten times, From all places whence ye shall return to us they will be upon you. 13Therefore I set in the lower places behind the wall, and on the higher places, I even set the people after their families with their swords, their spears, and their bows. 14And 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.
15And it came to pass, when our enemies heard that it was known to us, and God had brought their counsel to naught, that we returned all of us to the wall, every one to his work. 16And 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 habergeons; and the rulers were behind all the house of Judah. 17They who built on the wall, and they that bore burdens, with those that laded, every one with one of his hands wrought in the work, and with the other hand held a weapon. 18For the builders, every one had his sword girded by his side, and so built. And he that sounded the trumpet was by me. 19And 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. 20In what place therefore ye hear the sound of the trumpet, resort ye thither to us: our God will fight for us.
21So we labored in the work: and half of them held the spears from the rising of the morning till the stars appeared. 22Likewise 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 labor in the day. 23So neither I, nor my brethren, nor my servants, nor the men of the guard who followed me, none of us put off our clothes, saving that every one put them off for washing.