Nechemia Three: Credit

The vast majority of this chapter is comprised of verses the note who was responsible for rebuilding various parts of Jerusalem. For example, “Next to him Uziel the son of Haraiah, [of the] goldsmiths, repaired, and next to him, Hananiah the son of the perfumers repaired, and they filled Jerusalem until the broad wall (Nehemia 3:8).” What I love about this chapter, repetitive though the verses may be, is that it would be so easy for Nehemia to take all of the credit. In many iterations of history, the person at the helm is the only one who’s remembered, and Nehemia is the royal governor, so he could easily be the only one mentioned, as the one spearheading the initiative. But instead, all of these small contributions to the larger whole are enumerated. At my job, whenever a major event is concluded, the custom is to send out a staff-wide email, which, instead of being self-congratulatory to the program director or manager, is one of gratitude to all of the people who were responsible for the moving pieces – marketing, catering, setup, content, recruitment, and all of the other elements that make an event successful. Nehemia is doing the same thing, by giving credit where credit is due to all of the builders of Jerusalem.


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