“However, Jonathan left his brother Simon in the town, while he went out into the country. He went with only a few men. He struck down Odomera and his kindred and the people of Phasiron in their tents. Then he began to attack. He went into battle with his forces. Simon and his men sallied out from the town. They set fire to the machines of war. They fought with Bacchides. He was crushed by them. They pressed him very hard. His plan and his expedition had been in vain. So he was greatly enraged at the renegades who had counseled him to come into the country. He killed many of them. Then he decided to depart to his own land.”
Jonathan split up his forces. He left his brother Simon in the town and he went into the countryside with a few men. He attacked and defeated Odomera and Phasiron. Odomera was either an independent wandering chief or an officer of the army of the Syrian General Bacchides. Phasiron was another independent Arab chief. Simon and his group set fire to the war machines of General Bacchides that were set to attack the Jews people. He was defeated but he did not die. There is no indication of how many people he lost, but he was discouraged because his plan and invasion had not worked. Thus General Bacchides decided to kill some of the men who had encouraged him to invade Judea. Then he left in disgust to go back to his own land.
“So I came to Jerusalem. I was there three days. Then I got up during the night. I and a few men with me went out. I told no one what my God had put into my heart to do for Jerusalem. The only animal I took was the animal I rode. I went out by night by the Valley Gate past the Dragon’s Spring to the Dung Gate. I inspected the walls of Jerusalem that had been broken down. Its gates had been destroyed by fire. Then I went to the Fountain Gate and to the King’s Pool. However, there was no place for the animal that I was riding to continue. So I went by way of the valley by night. I inspected the wall. Then I turned back. I entered by the Valley Gate, and so returned. The officials did not know where I had gone or what I was doing. I had not yet told the Jews, the priests, the nobles, the officials, and the rest that they were to do the work.”
Nehemiah was in Jerusalem for 3 days. He did not say that he was fasting as Ezra had done. He told no one about his plan to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem. He got up at night with a few men. He rode on an animal inspecting the situation in Jerusalem. Finally, he had to go on foot since his unnamed animal could go no further. What did he see? Interesting enough, Nehemiah made a complete tour of the wall with the southwestern side with the Valley Gate, the Dragon Springs, and the Dung Gate, where there was a lot of rubbish or garbage in those days. The Fountain Gate and King’s Pool was on the southeast side of the wall. So he had inspected the western, southern, and eastern portions of the wall. However, he had not told anyone about his inspection, but the few people that were with him.