one out of ten. Populating the city by means of a tithe (a tenth) of the people is the first step in not neglecting the house of God, as pledged in 10:39.
the holy city. A rare phrase, used elsewhere only in v. 18; Is. 48:2; 52:1. Holiness has been expanding—from holy vessels (Ezra 1:7; cf. 8:28) to priests (Ezra 8:28), people (Ezra 9:2), the holy place (Ezra 9:8), the gates (3:1), the Sabbaths (9:14)—the entire city is now holy. The city with all that is in it has become holy, “God’s house,” which the Lord purposed to build (Heb. 3:1–6).