But it came to pass, that when Sanballat heard that we built the wall, he was wroth, and took great indignation, and mocked the Jews.…
When we behold a wide, turf-covered expanse, we should remember that its smoothness, on which so much of its beauty depends, is mainly due to all the inequalities having been slowly levelled by worms. It is a marvellous reflection that the whole of the superficial mould over any such expanse has passed, and will pass again, every few years, through the bodies of worms. The plough is one of the most ancient and most valuable of man's inventions; but long before he existed the land was, in fact, regularly ploughed by earth-worms. It may be doubted whether there are any other animals which have played so important a part in the history of the world as have these lowly organised creatures. Some other animal, however, still more lowly organised — namely, corals, have done far more conspicuous work in having constructed innumerable reefs and islands in the great oceans; but these are almost confined to the tropical zones.
Parallel VersesKJV: But it came to pass, that when Sanballat heard that we builded the wall, he was wroth, and took great indignation, and mocked the Jews.