Nehemiah was a layman who was directly involved in rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem and restoring law and order but he first had to get permission from the king (Artaxerxes 464 BC – 423 BC) to leave Babylon and go back to Jerusalem.
Nehemiah 1:7-9, 11
Nehemiah’s prayer to God to be able to go back to Jerusalem from service to the king of Babylon
verses 7-9 “Grievously have we offended You, not keeping the commandments, the statues, and the ordinances which You committed to Your servant Moses. But remember, I pray, the promise which You gave through Moses, Your servant, when You said: ‘Should you prove faithless, I will scatter you among the nations; but should you return to Me and carefully keep My commandments, even though your outcasts have been driven to the farthest corner of the world, I will gather them from there, and bring them back to the place which I have chosen as the dwelling place for My Name.‘
verse 11 O LORD, may Your Ear be attentive to my prayer and that of all Your willing servants who revere Your Name. Grant success to Your servant this day, and let him find favor with this man” – for I was cupbearer to the king.
The wall was rebuilt in 52 days.
Ezra the priest led a gathering of people to confess to the LORD.
Nehemiah 9:5, 10
verse 5 “Arise, bless the LORD, your God from eternity to eternity!” The Israelites answered with the blessing, “Blessed is Your glorious Name, and exalted above all blessing and praise.”
verse 10 “You worked signs and wonders against Pharaoh, against all his servants and the people of his land, Because You knew of their insolence toward them; thus You made for Yourself a Name even to this day.”