Very often, even after the hard work is done, there is still work left to do. Nehemiah has led his people to rebuild the walls which protect the holy city. They have found a measure of safety and order. Still, after Nehemiah goes back to Artaxerxes for a time, not a few of Judah’s leaders begin to do dishonorable things in Jerusalem with God’s tithes. Nehemiah has faced incredibly hard work leading a people in the midst of external opposition; upon returning, Nehemiah must work still to prevent internal corruption.
When God does a great work for Israel, the important issues of addressing sin, systemic injustice, or corrupt leadership don’t always go away. God has brought order and blessings for His people, but maintaining these blessings will take virtue. Virtue doesn’t happen accidentally, for we must work in faith to cultivate a love for whatever is noble, good, and true. Thus, no matter the level of external opposition we meet with in our lives, nor the number of struggles we as a church will face, there will always be important work to do, individually and corporately, for we must continually grow virtuous by grace.