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Biblical People

Biblical People: Noadiah

Noadiah is a prophetess during the time of Nehemiah when he leads the people in rebuilding the wall in Jerusalem. There is opposition to Nehemiah and his mission from some of the local people. They merely seem to want to stir up trouble. 

His chief opponents are Tobiah and Sanballat. They also enlist the help of a few others, including Geshem and Shemaiah. Tobiah and Sanballat pay Shemaiah to give Nehemiah bad advice, but Nehemiah discerns Shemaiah’s duplicity, accusing Shemaiah of prophesying against him.

Immediately after this, Nehemiah turns his detractors over to God for punishment. He lists Tobiah and Sanballat by name, but not Geshem and Shemaiah. He does, however, mention another person, the prophetess Noadiah. He says she and the rest of the prophets tried to intimidate him. 

While several chapters in the Bible detail the efforts of Tobiah and Sanballat to derail Nehemiah’s mission, this is the first we hear about Noadiah, her efforts to intimidate, and her misguided influence over the other prophets. We don’t know the details of what she did or why Nehemiah was so vexed with her, but we do know that after Tobiah and Sanballat, Nehemiah views her as his third biggest nemesis.

Noadiah could have used her status as prophetess for good or for bad. She chose wrong.

How can we best use our position, skills, and abilities to support God’s purpose and not oppose him?

[Discover more about Noadiah in Nehemiah 6:14.]


Read about other biblical women in Women of the Bible, available in audiobook, e-book, paperback, and hardcover.

A lifelong student of the Bible, Peter DeHaan, PhD, wrote the 700-page website ABibleADay.com to encourage people to explore the Bible. His main blog and numerous books urge Christians to push past the status quo and reconsider how they practice their faith in every area of their lives.