Beyond the Broadcast: Operation Intimidation

For months Nehemiah led the project of rebuilding Jerusalem’s walls in spite of constant opposition. As the walls neared completion, foes once again assailed this leader. But this time the attacks were more insidious—the enemy attempted to intimidate him.

Nehemiah’s discernment helped him frustrate the plots of his adversaries. In the same way, God-given discernment can help us face intimidating circumstances in our own realms of leadership.

Discovering the Way

1. When Did the Attacks Occur? (Nehemiah 6:1)

The walls of Jerusalem were nearly complete and the people were just about to begin a well-deserved celebration when the attacks began.

2. What Were the Attacks? (Nehemiah 6:2–14, 16–19)

First, Nehemiah’s enemies sent a personal request, intending to lure him into a trap (6:2–4). Second, his opponents circulated a public letter defaming Nehemiah’s character (6:5–9). Third, they formed a subtle conspiracy, seeking to frighten him (6:10–14). And finally, Nehemiah’s greatest enemy, Tobiah, sent threatening communication (6:16–19).

3. Did the Attacks Affect the Situation? (Nehemiah 6:15)

Nehemiah refused to be intimidated. Instead trusting God for the discernment he needed to continue to survive the attacks of his enemies he completed the task.

Starting Your Journey

It is impossible to do the will of God without experiencing opposition. Like Nehemiah, we need discernment to persevere through the inevitable challenges in our own realms of leadership.

“Operation Intimidation” is from Chuck Swindoll’s series Hand Me Another Brick: Timeless Lessons on Leadership. You can stream this message online anytime at