Nehemiah 1:1-3 says, “The words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah. And it came to pass in the month Chisleu, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the palace, that Hanani, one of my brethren, came, he and certain men of Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews that had escaped, which were left of the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem. And they said unto me, the remnant that is left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire.”
Nehemiah was the King of Persia cupbearer, Artaxerxes who stayed at the palace in Shushan. Shushan, or Susa, was the ordinary residence of the Persian kings. "The palace" or acropolis was a distinct quarter of the city, occupying an artificial eminence.
In order to understand Nehemiah’s calling one must know about Ezra’s calling. Ezra was a comtempory of Nehemiah. In the seventh year of Artaxerxes (458 B.C.) the Babylonian Jews requested that permission should be given to the priest Ezra to visit Palestine, with full power over the Jews there, and to enforce the book of the Law (Torah) as the will of the king. Ezra took a strong measure against mixed marriages, (Samaritans) which caused a conflict with the Samaritans and their allies. Many of the Samaritans had intermarried with the Jewish people and wanted to adopt Israel’s God, with their gods (Idol).
Ezra the Priest had to stop ministering the Word of God to build up the walls and gates, which had been burned down. With the walls and gates burned down it gave the enemy a huge advantage to afflict, and torment God’s people. Whenever God is working the enemy is their attempting to hinder, and stop God’s purpose in being fulfilled. The enemy (Devil) is not interested in anything that is not effective to the kingdom of God. Religion doesn’t bother him, however Salvation, Praise, and Deliverance do.
Isaiah 60:18 says, “Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise." Many of God’s people today are unable to receive the Word of God because they’re cracks in their walls, and the gates are broken.
If sin is found in our walls and despair and unbelief at our gates we are open to the enemy’s attacks. Many today are unable to receive the Word of God, because of the cracks in their walls and broken gates. In order to stop the verbal and physical attacks of Israel’s enemies they had to rebuild the walls and fix the gates. So it is in the body of Christ.
Ezra realized that in order for the people to know and live the word of God they needed the walls to be fortified against the enemy. To protect themselves against their enemies, Ezra undertook to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. However, the Samaritans and their governor, Rehum wrote a letter to the King stating the danger of refortification. The Samaritans were triumph and the walls were torn down and the gates were burnt.
Eph.6:12 say, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”It would take several years before another man who was led by the Lord would come and supernaturally finish what Ezra started. A delay doesn’t mean no from the Lord, it simply means regroup, wait for God’s directive, even if it takes awhile. He is preparing the way for you to finish what He has started.