Our enemies said, “They will not know or see us until we are among them, kill them and put a stop to the work.” When the Jews who lived near them came, they said to us ten times (repeatedly), “From every place you turn, they will come up against us.” So I stationed armed men behind the wall in the lowest places, at the open positions [where it was least protected]; and I stationed the people in families with their swords, spears, and bows. When I saw their fear, I stood and said to the nobles and officials and the rest of the people: “Do not be afraid of them; [confidently] remember the Lord who is great and awesome, and [with courage from Him] fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and for your homes.” – Nehemiah 4:11-14
It is interesting to note that the Lord did not use miraculous means to defeat the enemy. He simply He simply empowered his people to carry out the task.. This inner power is still available to us. – Ian McPherson
Nehemiah does more than pray, however. He posts a guard as well. Prayer and preparedness! This blending of the resources of the spiritual life with those of the material world is a marvelous picture of how believers ought to face threats, recognizing that we need action on both levels. Ray Steadman
Nehemiah rarely executes a temporal decision without framing it in spiritual terms or consulting his God. The text indicates that godliness is not necessarily incompatible with earthly success. His spiritual activity and physical behavior are not in opposition to each other. There is nothing “secular” about Nehemiah. – Ted Slater
The phrase “be on the alert” defines a fighter’s posture of “keeping your dukes up”, stay alert, keep your guard up against the enemy of your soul, your family, your relationships, your faith. If we let it down, that will be an “opportune moment” for the devil to strike.
They were willing to be vulnerable and release their comforts and to take action. The Holy Spirit undergirds, we just respond. Nehemiah means comfort, like the Holy Spirit. – Cheryl Canon
You say that you forget so soon; that you would remember, though at the critical moment you’re betrayed into forgetfulness. But you must recall His precious promise, that the Holy Spirit will bring all things to remembrance. If only you will trust the difficulty into His hands, you will find that He will gladly undertake it; and as long as you leave it with Him, you will hear His voice rising in your heart, and saying, “Remember the Lord.”
There are many wives taking verse 14 as an encouragement to challenge their husbands to be the men of God they’re purposed and for the most part, have pledged to be. Pray that husbands will not back down under the pressure of the enemy but stand with conviction to do battle for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. May they courageously and passionately fight for, protect, and lead their families by the power of the Holy Spirit within them.