Census of First Returned Exiles

Now when (A)the wall was rebuilt and I had installed the doors, and the gatekeepers, the singers, and the Levites were appointed, then I put (B)Hanani my brother, and (C)Hananiah the commander of (D)the citadel, in charge of Jerusalem, for he was (E)a faithful man and feared God more than many. Then I said to them, “The gates of Jerusalem are not to be opened until the sun is hot, and while they are standing guard, the gatekeepers are to [a]keep the doors shut and bolted. Also appoint guards from the inhabitants of Jerusalem, each at his post, and each in front of his own house.” Now the city was large and spacious, but the people in it were few and the houses were not built.

(F)Then my God put it into my heart to assemble the nobles, the officials, and the other people to be enrolled by genealogies. Then I found the book of the genealogy of those who came up first, [b]in which I found the following record:

(G)These are the [c]people of the province who came up from the captivity of the exiles whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had taken into exile, and who returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to his city, who came with Zerubbabel, Jeshua, Nehemiah, [d]Azariah, [e]Raamiah, Nahamani, Mordecai, Bilshan, [f]Mispereth, Bigvai, [g]Nehum, and Baanah.

The number of men of the people of Israel: the sons of Parosh, 2,172; the sons of Shephatiah, 372; 10 the sons of Arah, 652; 11 the sons of Pahath-moab of the sons of Jeshua and Joab, 2,818; 12 the sons of Elam, 1,254; 13 the sons of Zattu, 845; 14 the sons of Zaccai, 760; 15 the sons of [h]Binnui, 648; 16 the sons of Bebai, 628; 17 the sons of Azgad, 2,322; 18 the sons of Adonikam, 667; 19 the sons of Bigvai, 2,067; 20 the sons of Adin, 655; 21 the sons of Ater, of Hezekiah, 98; 22 the sons of Hashum, 328; 23 the sons of Bezai, 324; 24 the sons of [i]Hariph, 112; 25 the sons of [j]Gibeon, 95; 26 the men of Bethlehem and Netophah, 188; 27 the men of Anathoth, 128; 28 the men of [k]Beth-azmaveth, 42; 29 the men of [l]Kiriath-jearim, Chephirah, and Beeroth, 743; 30 the men of Ramah and Geba, 621; 31 the men of Michmas, 122; 32 the men of Bethel and Ai, 123; 33 the men of the other Nebo, 52; 34 the sons of the other Elam, 1,254; 35 the sons of Harim, 320; 36 the [m]men of Jericho, 345; 37 the sons of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, 721; 38 the sons of Senaah, 3,930.

39 The priests: the sons of Jedaiah of the house of Jeshua, 973; 40 the sons of Immer, 1,052; 41 the sons of Pashhur, 1,247; 42 the sons of Harim, 1,017.

43 The Levites: the sons of Jeshua, of Kadmiel, of the sons of [n]Hodevah, 74. 44 The singers: the sons of Asaph, 148. 45 The gatekeepers: the sons of Shallum, the sons of Ater, the sons of Talmon, the sons of Akkub, the sons of Hatita, the sons of Shobai, 138.

46 The temple servants: the sons of Ziha, the sons of Hasupha, the sons of Tabbaoth, 47 the sons of Keros, the sons of [o]Sia, the sons of Padon, 48 the sons of Lebana, the sons of Hagaba, the sons of Shalmai, 49 the sons of Hanan, the sons of Giddel, the sons of Gahar, 50 the sons of Reaiah, the sons of Rezin, the sons of Nekoda, 51 the sons of Gazzam, the sons of Uzza, the sons of Paseah, 52 the sons of Besai, the sons of Meunim, the sons of [p]Nephushesim, 53 the sons of Bakbuk, the sons of Hakupha, the sons of Harhur, 54 the sons of [q]Bazlith, the sons of Mehida, the sons of Harsha, 55 the sons of Barkos, the sons of Sisera, the sons of Temah, 56 the sons of Neziah, the sons of Hatipha.

57 The sons of Solomon’s servants: the sons of Sotai, the sons of [r]Sophereth, the sons of [s]Perida, 58 the sons of Jaala, the sons of Darkon, the sons of Giddel, 59 the sons of Shephatiah, the sons of Hattil, the sons of Pochereth-hazzebaim, and the sons of [t]Amon.

60 All the temple servants and the sons of Solomon’s servants totaled 392.

61 These were the ones who came up from Tel-melah, Tel-harsha, Cherub, [u]Addon, and Immer; but they could not provide evidence for their fathers’ households or their [v]descendants, whether they were of Israel: 62 the sons of Delaiah, the sons of Tobiah, the sons of Nekoda, 642. 63 And of the priests: the sons of Hobaiah, the sons of Hakkoz, the sons of Barzillai, who took a wife of the daughters of Barzillai, the Gileadite, and was named after them. 64 These searched among their ancestral registration, but it could not be located; therefore they were considered unclean and disqualified from the priesthood. 65 And (H)the [w]governor said to them that they were not to eat from the most holy things until a priest arose with (I)Urim and Thummim.

Total of People and Gifts

66 The whole assembly together totaled 42,360, 67 besides their male slaves and their female slaves, [x]of whom there were 7,337; and they had 245 male and female singers. 68 [y](J)Their horses were 736; their mules, 245; 69 their camels, 435; their donkeys, 6,720.

70 Some of the heads of fathers’ households gave to the work. The [z](K)governor gave to the treasury a thousand gold drachmas, fifty basins, and 530 priests’ garments. 71 And some of the heads of fathers’ households gave to the treasury for the work twenty thousand gold drachmas and 2,200 silver minas. 72 What the rest of the people gave was twenty thousand gold drachmas, two thousand silver minas, and sixty-seven priests’ garments.

73 Now (L)the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, some of the people, the temple servants, and all Israel lived in their cities.

(M)And when the seventh month came, the sons of Israel were in their cities.

Ezra Reads the Law

And all the people gathered as one person at the public square which was in front of (N)the Water Gate, and they [aa]asked (O)Ezra the scribe to bring (P)the Book of the Law of Moses which the Lord had [ab]given to Israel. Then (Q)Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly of men, women, and all who could listen with understanding, on (R)the first day of the seventh month. And he read from it before the public square which was in front of (S)the Water Gate, from [ac]early morning until midday, in the presence of men and women, those who could understand; and [ad]all the people were attentive to the Book of the Law. Ezra the scribe stood at a wooden podium which they had made for the purpose. And beside him stood Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah, and Maaseiah on his right; and Pedaiah, Mishael, Malchijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah, and Meshullam on his left. Then Ezra opened (T)the book in the sight of all the people, for he was standing above all the people; and when he opened it, all the people (U)stood up. Then Ezra blessed the Lord, the great God. And all the people answered, “(V)Amen, Amen!” with the raising of their hands; then (W)they kneeled down and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground. Also Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites explained the Law to the people while the people remained in their place. They read from the book, from the Law of God, [ae]translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading.

This Day Is Holy

Then Nehemiah, who was the [af](X)governor, and Ezra (Y)the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, “(Z)This day is holy to the Lord your God; (AA)do not mourn or weep.” For all the people were weeping when they heard the words of the Law. 10 Then he said to them, “Go, eat the festival foods, drink the sweet drinks, and (AB)send portions to him who has nothing prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your [ag]refuge.” 11 So the Levites silenced all the people, saying, “Be still, for the day is holy; do not be grieved.” 12 Then all the people went away to eat, drink, (AC)to send portions, and to [ah]celebrate a great feast, (AD)because they understood the words which had been made known to them.

Feast of Booths Restored

13 Then on the second day the heads of fathers’ households of all the people, the priests, and the Levites were gathered to Ezra the scribe so that they might gain insight into the words of the Law. 14 And they found written in the Law how the Lord had commanded through Moses that the sons of Israel (AE)were to live in [ai]booths during the feast of the seventh month. 15 (AF)And that they were to proclaim and circulate a proclamation in all their cities and (AG)in Jerusalem, saying, “(AH)Go out to the hills, and bring olive branches and [aj]wild olive branches, myrtle branches, palm branches, and branches of other trees with thick branches, to make booths, as it is written.” 16 So the people went out and brought them and made booths for themselves, each (AI)on his roof, and in their courtyards and in the courtyards of the house of God, and in the public square at (AJ)the Water Gate, and in the square at (AK)the Gate of Ephraim. 17 The entire assembly of those who had returned from the captivity made booths and lived in the booths. Indeed, the sons of Israel (AL)had not done so since the days of Joshua the son of Nun to that day. And (AM)there was very great rejoicing. 18 (AN)He read from the Book of the Law of God daily, from the first day to the last day. And they (AO)celebrated the feast seven days, and on (AP)the eighth day there was a festive assembly in accordance with the ordinance.

The People Confess Their Sin

Now on the twenty-fourth day of (AQ)this month the sons of Israel assembled (AR)with fasting, in sackcloth and with (AS)dirt upon them. The [ak](AT)descendants of Israel separated themselves from all foreigners, and they stood and (AU)confessed their sins and the wrongdoings of their fathers. While (AV)they stood in their place, they read from the Book of the Law of the Lord their God for a fourth of the day; and for another fourth they confessed and worshiped the Lord their God. (AW)Now on the Levites’ platform stood Jeshua, Bani, Kadmiel, Shebaniah, Bunni, Sherebiah, Bani, and Chenani, and they cried out with a loud voice to the Lord their God.

Then the Levites, Jeshua, Kadmiel, Bani, Hashabneiah, Sherebiah, Hodiah, Shebaniah, and Pethahiah said, “Arise, bless the Lord your God forever and ever!

May Your glorious name be blessed
And exalted above all blessing and praise!
(AX)You alone are the Lord.
(AY)You have made the heavens,
The heaven of heavens with all their [al]lights,
The earth and everything that is on it,
The seas and everything that is in them.
(AZ)You give life to all of them,
And the heavenly [am]lights bow down before You.
You are the Lord God,
(BA)Who chose Abram
And brought him out from (BB)Ur of the Chaldees,
And (BC)gave him the name Abraham.
You found (BD)his heart faithful before You,
And made a covenant with him
To give him the land of the Canaanite,
Of the Hittite and the Amorite,
Of the Perizzite, the Jebusite, and the Girgashite—
To give it to his [an]descendants.
And You (BE)have fulfilled Your [ao]promise,
Because You are righteous.

(BF)You saw the affliction of our fathers in Egypt,
And (BG)heard their cry by the [ap]Red Sea.
10 Then You performed (BH)signs and wonders against Pharaoh,
Against all his servants and all the people of his land;
For You knew that (BI)they acted arrogantly toward them,
And You (BJ)made a name for Yourself as it is this day.
11 (BK)You divided the sea before them,
So they passed through the midst of the sea on dry ground;
And You hurled (BL)their pursuers into the depths,
Like a stone into [aq]raging waters.
12 And with a pillar of cloud (BM)You led them by day,
And with a pillar of fire by night
To light for them the way
In which they were to go.
13 Then (BN)You came down on Mount Sinai,
And (BO)spoke with them from heaven;
You gave them (BP)just ordinances and true laws,
Good statutes and commandments.
14 So You made known to them (BQ)Your holy Sabbath,
And gave them commandments, statutes, and law,
Through Your servant Moses.
15 You (BR)provided bread from heaven for them for their hunger,
You (BS)brought out water from a rock for them for their thirst,
And You (BT)told them to enter in order to take possession of
The land which You [ar]swore to give them.

16 “But they, our fathers, (BU)acted arrogantly;
They [as](BV)became stubborn and would not listen to Your commandments.
17 They refused to listen,
And (BW)did not remember Your wondrous deeds which You performed among them;
So they became stubborn and (BX)appointed a leader to return to their slavery in [at]Egypt.
But You are a God (BY)of forgiveness,
Gracious and compassionate,
Slow to anger and abounding in [au]mercy;
And You did not abandon them.
18 Even when they (BZ)made for themselves
A calf of cast metal
And said, ‘This is your [av]god
Who brought you up from Egypt,’
And committed great blasphemies,
19 (CA)You, in Your great compassion,
Did not abandon them in the wilderness;
(CB)The pillar of cloud did not leave them by day,
To guide them on their way,
Nor the pillar of fire by night, to light for them the way in which they were to go.
20 Instead, (CC)You gave Your good Spirit to instruct them,
You did not withhold Your manna from their mouth,
And You gave them water for their thirst.
21 Indeed, for (CD)forty years You provided for them in the wilderness and they were not lacking;
Their clothes did not wear out, nor did their feet swell up.
22 You also gave them kingdoms and peoples,
And allotted them to them as a [aw]boundary.
(CE)They took possession of the land of Sihon [ax]the king of Heshbon
And the land of Og the king of Bashan.
23 You made their sons as numerous as (CF)the stars of heaven,
And You brought them into the land
Which You had told their fathers to enter and possess.
24 (CG)So their sons entered and took possession of the land.
And (CH)You subdued before them the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites,
And You handed them over to them, with their kings and the peoples of the land,
To do with them [ay]as they desired.
25 (CI)They captured fortified cities and a [az](CJ)fertile land.
They took possession of (CK)houses full of every good thing,
Carved out cisterns, vineyards, olive groves,
Fruit trees in abundance.
So they ate, were filled and (CL)put on fat,
And (CM)lived luxuriously in Your great goodness.

26 (CN)But they became rebellious and revolted against You,
And (CO)threw Your Law behind their backs
And (CP)killed Your prophets who had (CQ)admonished them
In order to bring them back to You,
And (CR)they committed great blasphemies.
27 Therefore You (CS)handed them over to their enemies who oppressed them,
But when they cried out to You (CT)in the time of their distress,
You heard from heaven, and according to Your great compassion
You (CU)gave them [ba]people who saved them from the hand of their enemies.
28 But (CV)as soon as they had rest, they did evil again before You;
Therefore You abandoned them to the hand of their enemies, so that they ruled over them.
When they cried out again to You, You heard from heaven,
And (CW)many times You rescued them according to Your compassion,
29 And (CX)admonished them in order to turn them back to Your Law.
Yet (CY)they acted arrogantly and did not listen to Your commandments but sinned against Your ordinances,
(CZ)Which, if a person [bb]follows them, then he will live by them.
And they [bc](DA)turned a stubborn shoulder and stiffened their neck, and would not listen.
30 (DB)However, You remained patient with them for many years,
And (DC)admonished them by (DD)Your Spirit through Your prophets,
Yet they would not listen.
Therefore You handed them over to the peoples of the lands.
31 Nevertheless, in Your great compassion You (DE)did not make an end of them or abandon them,
For You are (DF)a gracious and compassionate God.

32 “Now then, our God, (DG)the great, the mighty, and the awesome God, who keeps His covenant and faithfulness,
Do not let all the hardship seem insignificant before You,
Which has happened to us, our kings, our leaders, our priests, our prophets, our fathers, and to all Your people,
(DH)From the days of the kings of Assyria to this day.
33 However, (DI)You are righteous in everything that has happened to us;
For You have dealt faithfully, but we have acted wickedly.
34 For our kings, our leaders, our priests, and our fathers have not kept Your Law
Or paid attention to Your commandments and Your [bd]admonitions with which You have [be]admonished them.
35 But (DJ)they, in their own kingdom,
(DK)With Your great goodness which You gave them,
With the broad and rich land which You placed before them,
Did not serve You or turn from their evil deeds.
36 Behold, (DL)we are slaves today,
And as for the land which You gave to our fathers to eat its fruit and its bounty,
Behold, we are slaves on it.
37 And (DM)its abundant produce is for the kings
Whom You have set over us because of our sins;
They also rule over our bodies
And over our cattle as they please,
So we are in great distress.

A Covenant Results

38 [bf]Now because of all this
(DN)We are making an agreement in writing;
And on the (DO)sealed document are the names of our leaders, our Levites, and our priests.”

Signers of the Document

10 [bg]Now on the (DP)sealed document were the names of: Nehemiah the [bh]governor, the son of Hacaliah, and Zedekiah, Seraiah, Azariah, Jeremiah, Pashhur, Amariah, Malchijah, Hattush, Shebaniah, Malluch, Harim, Meremoth, Obadiah, Daniel, Ginnethon, Baruch, Meshullam, Abijah, Mijamin, Maaziah, Bilgai, and Shemaiah. These were the priests. And the Levites: Jeshua the son of Azaniah, Binnui of the sons of Henadad, and Kadmiel; 10 also their brothers Shebaniah, Hodiah, Kelita, Pelaiah, Hanan, 11 Mica, Rehob, Hashabiah, 12 Zaccur, Sherebiah, Shebaniah, 13 Hodiah, Bani, and Beninu. 14 The leaders of the people: Parosh, Pahath-moab, Elam, Zattu, Bani, 15 Bunni, Azgad, Bebai, 16 Adonijah, Bigvai, Adin, 17 Ater, Hezekiah, Azzur, 18 Hodiah, Hashum, Bezai, 19 Hariph, Anathoth, Nebai, 20 Magpiash, Meshullam, Hezir, 21 Meshezabel, Zadok, Jaddua, 22 Pelatiah, Hanan, Anaiah, 23 Hoshea, Hananiah, Hasshub, 24 Hallohesh, Pilha, Shobek, 25 Rehum, Hashabnah, Maaseiah, 26 Ahiah, Hanan, Anan, 27 Malluch, Harim, and Baanah.

Obligations of the Document

28 Now (DQ)the rest of the people, the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, the temple servants, and (DR)all those who had separated themselves from the peoples of the lands to the Law of God, their wives, their sons, and their daughters, all those who had knowledge and understanding, 29 are joining with their kinsmen, their nobles, and are [bi](DS)taking on themselves a curse and an oath to walk in God’s Law, which was given through Moses, God’s servant, and to keep and to [bj]comply with all the commandments of [bk]God our Lord, and His ordinances and statutes; 30 and (DT)that we will not give our daughters to the peoples of the land or take their daughters for our sons. 31 As (DU)for the peoples of the land who bring wares or any grain on the Sabbath day to sell, we will not [bl]buy from them on the Sabbath or on any holy day; and we will forgo the crops of the (DV)seventh year and [bm](DW)every debt.

32 We also imposed [bn]on ourselves the obligation to contribute yearly (DX)a third of a shekel for the service of the house of our God: 33 for the (DY)showbread, for the continual grain offering, for the continual burnt offering, the Sabbaths, the new moons, for the appointed times, for the holy things, and for the sin offerings to make atonement for Israel, and all the work of the house of our God.

34 Likewise (DZ)we cast lots (EA)for the supply of wood among the priests, the Levites, and the people so that they could bring it to the house of our God, according to our fathers’ households, at set times annually, to burn on the altar of the Lord our God, as it is written in the Law; 35 and so that they could bring the first fruits of our ground and (EB)the first fruits of all the fruit of every tree to the house of the Lord annually, 36 and (EC)bring to the house of our God the firstborn of our sons and of our cattle, and the firstborn of our herds and our flocks as it is written in the Law, for the priests who are ministering in the house of our God. 37 (ED)We will also bring the first of our [bo]dough, our contributions, the fruit of every tree, the new wine, and the oil (EE)to the priests at the chambers of the house of our God, and the (EF)tithe of our ground to the Levites, for the Levites are they who receive the tithes in all the rural towns. 38 And (EG)the priest, the son of Aaron, shall be with the Levites when the Levites receive tithes, and the Levites shall bring up the tenth of the tithes to the house of our God, to the chambers of (EH)the storehouse. 39 For the sons of Israel and the sons of Levi shall bring the (EI)contribution of the grain, the new wine, and the oil to the chambers; the utensils of the sanctuary, the priests who are ministering, the gatekeepers, and the singers are there. So (EJ)we will not [bp]neglect the house of our God.

Time Passes; Heads of Provinces

11 Now (EK)the leaders of the people lived in Jerusalem, but the rest of the people (EL)cast lots to bring one out of ten to live in Jerusalem, (EM)the holy city, while nine-tenths remained in the other cities. And the people blessed all the men who (EN)volunteered to live in Jerusalem.

(EO)Now these are the heads of the provinces who lived in Jerusalem, but in the cities of Judah (EP)each lived on his own property in their cities—the [bq]Israelites, the priests, the Levites, the [br](EQ)temple servants, and the [bs](ER)descendants of Solomon’s servants. Some of the sons of Judah and some of the sons of Benjamin lived in Jerusalem. From the sons of Judah: Athaiah the son of Uzziah, the son of Zechariah, the son of Amariah, the son of Shephatiah, the son of Mahalalel, of the sons of Perez; and Maaseiah the son of Baruch, the son of Col-hozeh, the son of Hazaiah, the son of Adaiah, the son of Joiarib, the son of Zechariah, the son of the Shilonite. All the sons of Perez who lived in Jerusalem were 468 able men.

Now these are the sons of Benjamin: Sallu the son of Meshullam, the son of Joed, the son of Pedaiah, the son of Kolaiah, the son of Maaseiah, the son of Ithiel, the son of Jeshaiah; and after him Gabbai and Sallai, 928. Joel the son of Zichri was their overseer, and Judah the son of Hassenuah was second [bt]in command of the city.

10 From the priests: Jedaiah the son of Joiarib, Jachin, 11 Seraiah the son of Hilkiah, the son of Meshullam, the son of Zadok, the son of Meraioth, the son of Ahitub, the overseer of the house of God, 12 and their kinsmen who did the work of the [bu]temple, 822; and Adaiah the son of Jeroham, the son of Pelaliah, the son of Amzi, the son of Zechariah, the son of Pashhur, the son of Malchijah, 13 and his kinsmen, heads of fathers’ households, 242; and Amashsai the son of Azarel, the son of Ahzai, the son of Meshillemoth, the son of Immer, 14 and their brothers, valiant warriors, 128. And their overseer was Zabdiel, the son of [bv]Haggedolim.

15 Now from the Levites: Shemaiah the son of Hasshub, the son of Azrikam, the son of Hashabiah, the son of Bunni; 16 and Shabbethai and Jozabad, from the [bw]leaders of the Levites, who were [bx]in charge of (ES)the outside work of the house of God; 17 and Mattaniah the son of Mica, the son of [by]Zabdi, the son of Asaph, who was the [bz]leader in beginning the thanksgiving at prayer, and Bakbukiah, the second among his kinsmen; and [ca]Abda the son of [cb]Shammua, the son of Galal, the son of Jeduthun. 18 All the Levites in (ET)the holy city were 284.

19 Also the gatekeepers: Akkub, Talmon, and their kinsmen who kept watch at the gates, were 172.

Outside Jerusalem

20 The rest of Israel, of the priests and of the Levites, were in all the cities of Judah, each (EU)on his own inheritance. 21 But (EV)the temple servants were living in Ophel, and Ziha and Gishpa were [cc]in charge of the temple servants.

22 Now (EW)the overseer of the Levites in Jerusalem was Uzzi the son of Bani, the son of Hashabiah, the son of Mattaniah, the son of Mica, from the sons of Asaph, who were the singers for the [cd]service of the house of God. 23 (EX)For there was a commandment from the king concerning them and a royal command for the singers (EY)day by day. 24 And Pethahiah the son of Meshezabel, of the sons (EZ)of Zerah the son of Judah, was the (FA)king’s [ce]representative for every matter concerning the people.

25 Now as for the villages with their fields, some of the sons of Judah lived in (FB)Kiriath-arba and its [cf]towns, in (FC)Dibon and its [cg]towns, and in Jekabzeel and its villages, 26 and in Jeshua, in Moladah, and Beth-pelet, 27 and in Hazar-shual, in Beersheba and its towns, 28 and in Ziklag, in Meconah and in its towns, 29 and in En-rimmon, in Zorah, and in Jarmuth, 30 Zanoah, Adullam, and their villages, Lachish and its fields, Azekah and its towns. So they camped from Beersheba as far as the Valley of Hinnom. 31 The sons of Benjamin also lived from Geba onward, at Michmash and Aija, at Bethel and its towns, 32 at Anathoth, Nob, Ananiah, 33 Hazor, Ramah, Gittaim, 34 Hadid, Zeboim, Neballat, 35 Lod, and Ono, the Valley of Craftsmen. 36 And from the Levites, some divisions in Judah belonged to Benjamin.

Priests and Levites Who Returned to Jerusalem with Zerubbabel

12 Now these are (FD)the priests and the Levites who came up with Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua: Seraiah, Jeremiah, Ezra, Amariah, Malluch, Hattush, Shecaniah, Rehum, Meremoth, Iddo, Ginnethoi, Abijah, Mijamin, Maadiah, Bilgah, Shemaiah and Joiarib, Jedaiah, Sallu, Amok, Hilkiah, and Jedaiah. These were the heads of the priests and their kinsmen in the days of Jeshua.

And the Levites were Jeshua, Binnui, Kadmiel, Sherebiah, Judah, and Mattaniah who was [ch]in charge of the songs of thanksgiving, he and his brothers. Also Bakbukiah and Unni, their brothers, stood opposite them (FE)in their service divisions. 10 Jeshua fathered Joiakim, Joiakim fathered Eliashib, Eliashib fathered Joiada, 11 Joiada fathered Jonathan, and Jonathan fathered Jaddua.

12 Now in the days of Joiakim, the priests, the heads of fathers’ households were: of Seraiah, Meraiah; of Jeremiah, Hananiah; 13 of Ezra, Meshullam; of Amariah, Jehohanan; 14 of [ci]Malluchi, Jonathan; of Shebaniah, Joseph; 15 of Harim, Adna; of Meraioth, Helkai; 16 of Iddo, Zechariah; of Ginnethon, Meshullam; 17 of Abijah, Zichri; of Miniamin, of Moadiah, Piltai; 18 of Bilgah, Shammua; of Shemaiah, Jehonathan; 19 of Joiarib, Mattenai; of Jedaiah, Uzzi; 20 of Sallai, Kallai; of Amok, Eber; 21 of Hilkiah, Hashabiah; and of Jedaiah, Nethanel.

The Chief Levites

22 As for the Levites, the heads of fathers’ households were registered in the days of Eliashib, Joiada, and Johanan, and Jaddua; so were the priests in the reign of Darius the Persian. 23 The sons of Levi, the heads of fathers’ households, were registered in the Book of the Chronicles up to the days of Johanan the son of Eliashib. 24 And the heads of the Levites were Hashabiah, Sherebiah, and Jeshua the son of Kadmiel, with their brothers opposite them, (FF)to praise and give thanks, [cj]as prescribed by David the man of God, (FG)division corresponding to division. 25 Mattaniah, Bakbukiah, Obadiah, Meshullam, Talmon, and Akkub were gatekeepers keeping watch at (FH)the storerooms of the gates. 26 These men served in the days of Joiakim the son of Jeshua, the son of Jozadak, and in the days of (FI)Nehemiah the governor and Ezra the priest and scribe.

Dedication of the Wall

27 Now at the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem they sought out the Levites from all their places, to bring them to Jerusalem so that they could celebrate the dedication with joy, with songs of thanksgiving and with songs (FJ)to the accompaniment of cymbals, harps, and lyres. 28 So the sons of the singers were assembled from the territory around Jerusalem, and from (FK)the villages of the Netophathites, 29 from Beth-gilgal and from their fields in Geba and Azmaveth, because the singers had built themselves villages around Jerusalem. 30 The priests and the Levites (FL)purified themselves; they also purified the people, the gates, and the wall.

Procedures for the Temple

31 Then I had the leaders of Judah come up on top of the wall, and I appointed two large [ck]choirs, [cl](FM)the first proceeding to the right on top of the wall toward (FN)the Dung Gate. 32 Hoshaiah and half of the leaders of Judah followed them, 33 with Azariah, Ezra, Meshullam, 34 Judah, Benjamin, Shemaiah, Jeremiah, 35 and some of the sons of the priests with trumpets; and Zechariah the son of Jonathan, the son of Shemaiah, the son of Mattaniah, the son of Micaiah, the son of Zaccur, the son of Asaph, 36 and his kinsmen, Shemaiah, Azarel, Milalai, Gilalai, Maai, Nethanel, Judah, and Hanani, (FO)with the musical instruments of David the man of God. And Ezra the scribe went before them. 37 At (FP)the Fountain Gate they went directly up (FQ)the steps of the city of David by the stairway of the wall, above the house of David to (FR)the Water Gate on the east.

38 (FS)The second [cm]choir proceeded to the [cn]left, while I followed them with half of the people on the wall, (FT)above the Tower of Furnaces, to (FU)the Broad Wall, 39 and above (FV)the Gate of Ephraim, by (FW)the Ancient Gate, by the (FX)Fish Gate, (FY)the Tower of Hananel, and the Tower of the Hundred, as far as the Sheep Gate; and they stopped at (FZ)the Gate of the Guard. 40 Then the two choirs took their positions in the house of God. So did I and half of the officials with me; 41 and the priests, Eliakim, Maaseiah, Miniamin, Micaiah, Elioenai, Zechariah, and Hananiah, with the trumpets; 42 and Maaseiah, Shemaiah, Eleazar, Uzzi, Jehohanan, Malchijah, Elam, and Ezer. And the singers [co]sang, with Jezrahiah their leader, 43 and on that day they offered great sacrifices and rejoiced because (GA)God had given them great joy, and the women and children rejoiced as well, so that the joy of Jerusalem was heard from far away.

44 On that day (GB)men were also appointed over the chambers for the supplies, the contributions, the first fruits, and the tithes, to gather into them from the fields of the cities the portions required by the Law for the priests and Levites; for Judah rejoiced over the priests and the Levites who [cp]served. 45 For they performed the [cq]worship of their God and the service of purification, together with the singers and the gatekeepers (GC)in accordance with the command of David and of his son Solomon. 46 For in the days of David and (GD)Asaph, in ancient times, there were [cr](GE)leaders of the singers, songs of praise and songs of thanksgiving to God. 47 So all Israel in the days of Zerubbabel and Nehemiah gave the portions due the singers and the gatekeepers (GF)as each day required, and they [cs](GG)set apart the consecrated portion for the Levites, and the Levites [ct]set apart the consecrated portion for the sons of Aaron.

Foreigners Excluded

13 On that day the Book of Moses was (GH)read aloud [cu]as the people listened; and there was found written in it that (GI)no Ammonite or Moabite was ever to enter the assembly of God, because they did not meet the sons of Israel with bread and water, but (GJ)hired Balaam against them to curse them. However, (GK)our God turned the curse into a blessing. So when they heard the Law, (GL)they excluded (GM)all foreigners from Israel.

Tobiah Expelled and the Temple Cleansed

Now prior to this, Eliashib the priest, (GN)who was appointed over the chambers of the house of our God, being [cv]related to (GO)Tobiah, had prepared a large [cw]room for him, where previously they used to put the grain offerings, the frankincense, the utensils and the tithes of grain, wine, and oil (GP)prescribed for the Levites, the singers, and the gatekeepers, and the [cx]contributions for the priests. But during all this time I was not in Jerusalem, for in (GQ)the thirty-second year of (GR)Artaxerxes king of Babylon I had come to the king. After some time, however, I requested a leave of absence from the king, and I came to Jerusalem and [cy]learned about the evil that Eliashib had committed for [cz]Tobiah, (GS)by preparing a [da]room for him in the courtyards of the house of God. It was very displeasing to me, so I (GT)threw all of Tobiah’s household articles out of the room. Then I gave an order, and (GU)they cleansed the rooms; and I returned the utensils of the house of God there with the grain offering and the frankincense.

Tithes Restored

10 I also [db]discovered that (GV)the portions of the Levites had not been given to them, so the Levites and the singers who performed the service had [dc]gone away, (GW)each to his own field. 11 So I [dd](GX)reprimanded the officials and said, “(GY)Why has the house of God been neglected?” Then I gathered them together and stationed them at their posts. 12 All Judah then brought (GZ)the tithe of the grain, wine, and oil into the storehouses. 13 To be in charge of the storehouses, I appointed Shelemiah the priest, Zadok the scribe, and Pedaiah from the Levites, and in addition to them was Hanan the son of Zaccur, the son of Mattaniah; for (HA)they were considered reliable, and it was [de]their task to distribute to their kinsmen. 14 (HB)Remember me for this, my God, and do not wipe out my loyal deeds which I have performed for the house of my God and its services.

Sabbath Restored

15 In those days I saw in Judah people who were treading wine presses (HC)on the Sabbath, and bringing in sacks of grain and loading them on donkeys, as well as wine, grapes, figs, and every kind of load, (HD)and they were bringing them into Jerusalem on the Sabbath day. So (HE)I admonished them on the day they sold food. 16 Also people of Tyre were living [df]there who imported fish and all kinds of merchandise, and sold them to the sons of Judah on the Sabbath, even in Jerusalem. 17 Then (HF)I [dg]reprimanded the nobles of Judah and said to them, “What is this evil thing that you are doing, [dh]by profaning the Sabbath day? 18 (HG)Did your fathers not do the same, so that our God brought on us and on this city all this trouble? Yet you are adding to the wrath against Israel by profaning the Sabbath.”

19 And (HH)it came about that just as it became dark at the gates of Jerusalem before the Sabbath, I ordered that the doors be shut, [di]and that they were not to open them until after the Sabbath. Then I stationed some of my servants at the gates so that no load would enter on the Sabbath day. 20 Once or twice the traders and merchants of every kind of merchandise spent the night outside Jerusalem. 21 Then (HI)I warned them and said to them, “Why do you spend the night in front of the wall? If you do so again, I will [dj]use force against you.” From that time on they did not come on the Sabbath. 22 And I ordered the Levites that (HJ)they were to purify themselves and come as gatekeepers to sanctify the Sabbath day. For this also (HK)remember me, my God, and have compassion on me according to the greatness of Your mercy.

Mixed Marriages Forbidden

23 In those days I also saw that the Jews had [dk](HL)married women from (HM)Ashdod, (HN)Ammon, and Moab. 24 As for their children, half spoke in the language of Ashdod, and none of them knew how to speak the language of Judah, but [dl]only the language of his own people. 25 So (HO)I quarreled with them and cursed them, and (HP)struck some of them and pulled out their hair, and (HQ)made them swear by God, “You shall not give your daughters to their sons, nor take any of their daughters for your sons or for yourselves. 26 (HR)Did Solomon the king of Israel not sin regarding these things? (HS)Yet among the many nations there was no king like him, and (HT)he was loved by his God, and God made him king over all Israel; yet the foreign women caused even him to sin. 27 Has it not then been reported about you that you have committed all this great evil (HU)by acting unfaithfully against our God, by [dm]marrying foreign women?” 28 Even one of the sons of Joiada, the son of Eliashib the high priest, became a son-in-law of (HV)Sanballat the Horonite, so I chased him away from me. 29 (HW)Remember them, my God, [dn]because they have defiled the priesthood and the (HX)covenant of the priesthood and the Levites.

30 (HY)So I purified them from everything foreign, and assigned duties to the priests and the Levites, each in his work, 31 and I arranged (HZ)for the delivery of wood at appointed times and for the first fruits. (IA)Remember me, my God, for good.


  1. Nehemiah 7:3 Lit shut the doors and bolt
  2. Nehemiah 7:5 Lit and I found written in it
  3. Nehemiah 7:6 Lit sons
  4. Nehemiah 7:7 In Ezra 2:2, Seraiah
  5. Nehemiah 7:7 In Ezra 2:2, Reelaiah
  6. Nehemiah 7:7 In Ezra 2:2, Mispar
  7. Nehemiah 7:7 In Ezra 2:2, Rehum
  8. Nehemiah 7:15 In Ezra 2:10, Bani
  9. Nehemiah 7:24 In Ezra 2:18, Jorah
  10. Nehemiah 7:25 In Ezra 2:20, Gibbar
  11. Nehemiah 7:28 In Ezra 2:24, Azmaveth
  12. Nehemiah 7:29 In Ezra 2:25, Kiriath-arim
  13. Nehemiah 7:36 Lit sons
  14. Nehemiah 7:43 In Ezra 2:40, Hodaviah, in Ezra 3:9, Judah
  15. Nehemiah 7:47 In Ezra 2:44, Siaha
  16. Nehemiah 7:52 In Ezra 2:50, Nephisim
  17. Nehemiah 7:54 In Ezra 2:52, Bazluth
  18. Nehemiah 7:57 In Ezra 2:55, Hassophereth
  19. Nehemiah 7:57 In Ezra 2:55, Peruda
  20. Nehemiah 7:59 In Ezra 2:57, Ami
  21. Nehemiah 7:61 In Ezra 2:59, Addan
  22. Nehemiah 7:61 Lit seed
  23. Nehemiah 7:65 Heb Tirshatha, a Persian title
  24. Nehemiah 7:67 Lit these
  25. Nehemiah 7:68 As in some ancient mss and LXX; verse not in MT
  26. Nehemiah 7:70 Heb Tirshatha, a Persian title
  27. Nehemiah 8:1 Lit said to
  28. Nehemiah 8:1 Lit commanded
  29. Nehemiah 8:3 Lit the light
  30. Nehemiah 8:3 Lit the ears of all...were to
  31. Nehemiah 8:8 Or explaining
  32. Nehemiah 8:9 Heb Tirshatha, a Persian title
  33. Nehemiah 8:10 Or stronghold
  34. Nehemiah 8:12 Lit make a great rejoicing
  35. Nehemiah 8:14 I.e., huts, also called tabernacles
  36. Nehemiah 8:15 Lit oil tree, species unknown
  37. Nehemiah 9:2 Lit seed
  38. Nehemiah 9:6 Lit host; i.e., sun, stars, etc.
  39. Nehemiah 9:6 Lit host; i.e., sun, stars, etc.
  40. Nehemiah 9:8 Lit seed
  41. Nehemiah 9:8 Lit words
  42. Nehemiah 9:9 Lit Sea of Reeds
  43. Nehemiah 9:11 Lit strong, mighty
  44. Nehemiah 9:15 Lit lifted up Your hand
  45. Nehemiah 9:16 Lit stiffened their neck; so also v 17
  46. Nehemiah 9:17 As in LXX and some Heb mss; MT their rebellion
  47. Nehemiah 9:17 Or faithfulness
  48. Nehemiah 9:18 Or God; i.e., an idol intended to represent God
  49. Nehemiah 9:22 Lit side, corner
  50. Nehemiah 9:22 As in LXX and Lat; MT and the land of the king of Heshbon
  51. Nehemiah 9:24 Lit according to their desire
  52. Nehemiah 9:25 Lit fat
  53. Nehemiah 9:27 Lit deliverers
  54. Nehemiah 9:29 Lit does them
  55. Nehemiah 9:29 Lit gave
  56. Nehemiah 9:34 Lit testimonies
  57. Nehemiah 9:34 Or testified to
  58. Nehemiah 9:38 Ch 10:1 in Heb
  59. Nehemiah 10:1 Ch 10:2 in Heb
  60. Nehemiah 10:1 Heb Tirshatha, a Persian title
  61. Nehemiah 10:29 Lit entering into a
  62. Nehemiah 10:29 Lit do all
  63. Nehemiah 10:29 Heb YHWH, usually rendered Lord
  64. Nehemiah 10:31 Lit take
  65. Nehemiah 10:31 Lit the loan from every hand
  66. Nehemiah 10:32 Lit commandments on us
  67. Nehemiah 10:37 Or coarse meal
  68. Nehemiah 10:39 Lit abandon
  69. Nehemiah 11:3 Lit Israel
  70. Nehemiah 11:3 Heb Nethinim
  71. Nehemiah 11:3 Lit sons
  72. Nehemiah 11:9 Lit over
  73. Nehemiah 11:12 Lit house
  74. Nehemiah 11:14 Or the great ones
  75. Nehemiah 11:16 Lit heads
  76. Nehemiah 11:16 Lit over
  77. Nehemiah 11:17 In 1 Chr 9:15, Zichri
  78. Nehemiah 11:17 Lit head
  79. Nehemiah 11:17 In 1 Chr 9:16, Obadiah
  80. Nehemiah 11:17 In 1 Chr 9:16, Shemaiah
  81. Nehemiah 11:21 Lit over
  82. Nehemiah 11:22 Or work
  83. Nehemiah 11:24 Lit hand
  84. Nehemiah 11:25 Lit daughters, and so throughout the ch
  85. Nehemiah 11:25 Lit daughters, and so throughout the ch
  86. Nehemiah 12:8 Lit over
  87. Nehemiah 12:14 In v 2, Malluch
  88. Nehemiah 12:24 Lit by the commandment of
  89. Nehemiah 12:31 Lit thanksgiving choirs
  90. Nehemiah 12:31 Heb and processions to the right
  91. Nehemiah 12:38 Lit thanksgiving choir
  92. Nehemiah 12:38 Heb uncertain, perhaps opposite
  93. Nehemiah 12:42 Lit made themselves heard
  94. Nehemiah 12:44 Lit stood
  95. Nehemiah 12:45 Lit service
  96. Nehemiah 12:46 Lit heads
  97. Nehemiah 12:47 Or gave votive offerings to
  98. Nehemiah 12:47 Or gave votive offerings to
  99. Nehemiah 13:1 Lit in the ears of the people
  100. Nehemiah 13:4 Lit close to
  101. Nehemiah 13:5 Or chamber
  102. Nehemiah 13:5 Or uplifted offerings
  103. Nehemiah 13:7 Or understood
  104. Nehemiah 13:7 An Ammonite, banned from the temple
  105. Nehemiah 13:7 Or chamber, and so in vv 8, 9
  106. Nehemiah 13:10 Or knew
  107. Nehemiah 13:10 Lit fled
  108. Nehemiah 13:11 Or contended with
  109. Nehemiah 13:13 Lit on them to
  110. Nehemiah 13:16 Lit in it
  111. Nehemiah 13:17 Or contended with
  112. Nehemiah 13:17 Lit and
  113. Nehemiah 13:19 Lit and commanded
  114. Nehemiah 13:21 Lit send a hand against
  115. Nehemiah 13:23 Lit given dwelling to
  116. Nehemiah 13:24 Lit according to the tongue of people and people
  117. Nehemiah 13:27 Lit giving dwelling to
  118. Nehemiah 13:29 Lit for the defilements of

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