15When our enemies heard that we knew their scheme and that God had frustrated it, every one of us returned to his own work on the wall. 16From that day on, half of my men did the work while the other half held spears, shields, bows, and armor. The officers supported all the people of Judah, 17who were rebuilding the wall. The laborers who carried the loads worked with one hand and held a weapon with the other. 18Each of the builders had his sword strapped around his waist while he was building, and the one who sounded the ram’s horn was beside me. 19Then I said to the nobles, the officials, and the rest of the people, “The work is enormous and spread out, and we are separated far from one another along the wall. 20Wherever you hear the sound of the ram’s horn, rally to us there. Our God will fight for us!” 21So we continued the work, while half of the men were holding spears from daybreak until the stars came out. 22At that time, I also said to the people, “Let everyone and his servant spend the night inside Jerusalem, so that they can stand guard by night and work by day.” 23And I, my brothers, my servants, and the men of the guard with me never took off our clothes. Each carried his weapon, even when washing.