What was the Ophel? The Ophel (3:26) was a hill in Jerusalem between the Kidron and Central Valleys. It was northeast of the older City of David and just south of the Temple Mount. The oldest part of Jerusalem was built long before David captured the city from the Jebusites.
The fortress of the temple (2:8) provided extra defense for the temple area, since this section of Jerusalem was very vulnerable to attack. Many other governors of Jerusalem after Nehemiah built fortresses here, including Herod the Great, whose famous Antonia Fortress can be visited today.
Cupbearer to the king may sound like a lowly position, but it was actually considered a high office. The cupbearer’s job was to taste any wine brought to the king, in case it was poisoned. The king had to trust his cupbearer with his very life. Because of their trusted position, many cupbearers, such as […]