Nehemiah Chapter 5, Complaints and Problems of Judah

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This chapter is full of many different problems which happened during the time of construction if the Walls around Jerusalem. This time frame took 52 days to complete.

Three different problems arose. ONE:Many landless People were without food. TWO:Landlords were forced to mortgage their land because of the famine. THREE: Borrowing was necessary to pay property tax imposed by the Persistent.

Verses 1-5, debts, interests and bondage.
Verses 6-13, payments of interest abolished.
Verses 14-19, examples of Unselfishness.

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Nehemiah 5:5-6, Why Should We Be There Servants?

During this time of uncertainty in Judah, there was a great outcry for "Social Justice". It didn't happen right away. There was still the reminder that they were all once in bondage in Babylon.

Yet, in Babylon and with this bondage, came the ability of some to rise above their place in bondage and be a Light to those Captors in Babylon of The One True G-d of Israel, YHVH. Those Leaders like Ezra and Nehemiah were now on the receiving end of an outcry by those who were now scraping the bottom of the flower bin to make a small loaf of bread to feed their family. Nehemiah is now angered.

Now The People of Judah were struggling again to be A Nation that was free to Worship G-d in their own homeland and with their own customs given to them by G-d for a remembrance where they had been and how G-d was leading them on the completion of that journey. But they were still a Satrap of Persian Rule among many Persian Satraps all around them.

It was the less unfortunate who were suffering the most as they cried out to G-d for their Daily Bread in prayer. Times were hard on the pocket book and what little they did have, did not stretch out to cover this expense of living in a war zone.

When you read the two verses today, I ask you; Do the words of this set of verses sound any different than what you are now hearing coming out of this same Holy Place of Jerusalem? Times have changed but still there is No Peace in this Place, not even today.

Lets read the next two verses of Nehemiah 5,

V5 "Yet now our flesh [is] as the flesh of our brethren, our children as their children; and indeed we are forcing our sons and our daughters to be slaves, and [some] of our daughters have been brought into slavery. [It is] not in our power [to redeem them,] for other men have our lands and vineyards."
V6 And I became very angry when I heard their outcry and these words.

One of the benefits of living under G-d's Laws, was that people did get their freedom back, even when they were a bond servant. Their was a limited time that you would serve and then freedom was given back. Even land and property like your home and vineyards and fields were returned to you after a set time.

But what was going on was even worse, it went further than Torah Law contained. They were engaging in things[selling their children into bondage] that were not even in Torah. To save the lives of those in their family from death by starvation, was going beyond Torah. They had gone beyond Torah because no one was reaching out to them from Judah and assisting them in the hour of their need. The times were desperate, and Nehemiah was seeing and hearing the crying out of The People. It angered him to make a confrontation with those who were the nobles of Judah.