Time Passes; Heads of Provinces

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

(E)Now these are the heads of the provinces who lived in Jerusalem, but in the cities of Judah (F)each lived on his own property in their cities—the [a]Israelites, the priests, the Levites, the [b](G)temple servants, and the [c](H)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 [d]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 [e]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 [f]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 [g]leaders of the Levites, who were [h]in charge of (I)the outside work of the house of God; 17 and Mattaniah the son of Mica, the son of [i]Zabdi, the son of Asaph, who was the [j]leader in beginning the thanksgiving at prayer, and Bakbukiah, the second among his kinsmen; and [k]Abda the son of [l]Shammua, the son of Galal, the son of Jeduthun. 18 All the Levites in (J)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 (K)on his own inheritance. 21 But (L)the temple servants were living in Ophel, and Ziha and Gishpa were [m]in charge of the temple servants.

22 Now (M)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 [n]service of the house of God. 23 (N)For there was a commandment from the king concerning them and a royal command for the singers (O)day by day. 24 And Pethahiah the son of Meshezabel, of the sons (P)of Zerah the son of Judah, was the (Q)king’s [o]representative for every matter concerning the people.

25 Now as for the villages with their fields, some of the sons of Judah lived in (R)Kiriath-arba and its [p]towns, in (S)Dibon and its [q]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.


  1. Nehemiah 11:3 Lit Israel
  2. Nehemiah 11:3 Heb Nethinim
  3. Nehemiah 11:3 Lit sons
  4. Nehemiah 11:9 Lit over
  5. Nehemiah 11:12 Lit house
  6. Nehemiah 11:14 Or the great ones
  7. Nehemiah 11:16 Lit heads
  8. Nehemiah 11:16 Lit over
  9. Nehemiah 11:17 In 1 Chr 9:15, Zichri
  10. Nehemiah 11:17 Lit head
  11. Nehemiah 11:17 In 1 Chr 9:16, Obadiah
  12. Nehemiah 11:17 In 1 Chr 9:16, Shemaiah
  13. Nehemiah 11:21 Lit over
  14. Nehemiah 11:22 Or work
  15. Nehemiah 11:24 Lit hand
  16. Nehemiah 11:25 Lit daughters, and so throughout the ch
  17. Nehemiah 11:25 Lit daughters, and so throughout the ch

Priests and Levites Who Returned to Jerusalem with Zerubbabel

12 Now these are (A)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 [a]in charge of the songs of thanksgiving, he and his brothers. Also Bakbukiah and Unni, their brothers, stood opposite them (B)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 [b]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, (C)to praise and give thanks, [c]as prescribed by David the man of God, (D)division corresponding to division. 25 Mattaniah, Bakbukiah, Obadiah, Meshullam, Talmon, and Akkub were gatekeepers keeping watch at (E)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 (F)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 (G)to the accompaniment of cymbals, harps, and lyres. 28 So the sons of the singers were assembled from the territory around Jerusalem, and from (H)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 (I)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 [d]choirs, [e](J)the first proceeding to the right on top of the wall toward (K)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, (L)with the musical instruments of David the man of God. And Ezra the scribe went before them. 37 At (M)the Fountain Gate they went directly up (N)the steps of the city of David by the stairway of the wall, above the house of David to (O)the Water Gate on the east.

38 (P)The second [f]choir proceeded to the [g]left, while I followed them with half of the people on the wall, (Q)above the Tower of Furnaces, to (R)the Broad Wall, 39 and above (S)the Gate of Ephraim, by (T)the Ancient Gate, by the (U)Fish Gate, (V)the Tower of Hananel, and the Tower of the Hundred, as far as the Sheep Gate; and they stopped at (W)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 [h]sang, with Jezrahiah their leader, 43 and on that day they offered great sacrifices and rejoiced because (X)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 (Y)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 [i]served. 45 For they performed the [j]worship of their God and the service of purification, together with the singers and the gatekeepers (Z)in accordance with the command of David and of his son Solomon. 46 For in the days of David and (AA)Asaph, in ancient times, there were [k](AB)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 (AC)as each day required, and they [l](AD)set apart the consecrated portion for the Levites, and the Levites [m]set apart the consecrated portion for the sons of Aaron.


  1. Nehemiah 12:8 Lit over
  2. Nehemiah 12:14 In v 2, Malluch
  3. Nehemiah 12:24 Lit by the commandment of
  4. Nehemiah 12:31 Lit thanksgiving choirs
  5. Nehemiah 12:31 Heb and processions to the right
  6. Nehemiah 12:38 Lit thanksgiving choir
  7. Nehemiah 12:38 Heb uncertain, perhaps opposite
  8. Nehemiah 12:42 Lit made themselves heard
  9. Nehemiah 12:44 Lit stood
  10. Nehemiah 12:45 Lit service
  11. Nehemiah 12:46 Lit heads
  12. Nehemiah 12:47 Or gave votive offerings to
  13. Nehemiah 12:47 Or gave votive offerings to

Foreigners Excluded

13 On that day the Book of Moses was (A)read aloud [a]as the people listened; and there was found written in it that (B)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 (C)hired Balaam against them to curse them. However, (D)our God turned the curse into a blessing. So when they heard the Law, (E)they excluded (F)all foreigners from Israel.

Tobiah Expelled and the Temple Cleansed

Now prior to this, Eliashib the priest, (G)who was appointed over the chambers of the house of our God, being [b]related to (H)Tobiah, had prepared a large [c]room for him, where previously they used to put the grain offerings, the frankincense, the utensils and the tithes of grain, wine, and oil (I)prescribed for the Levites, the singers, and the gatekeepers, and the [d]contributions for the priests. But during all this time I was not in Jerusalem, for in (J)the thirty-second year of (K)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 [e]learned about the evil that Eliashib had committed for [f]Tobiah, (L)by preparing a [g]room for him in the courtyards of the house of God. It was very displeasing to me, so I (M)threw all of Tobiah’s household articles out of the room. Then I gave an order, and (N)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 [h]discovered that (O)the portions of the Levites had not been given to them, so the Levites and the singers who performed the service had [i]gone away, (P)each to his own field. 11 So I [j](Q)reprimanded the officials and said, “(R)Why has the house of God been neglected?” Then I gathered them together and stationed them at their posts. 12 All Judah then brought (S)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 (T)they were considered reliable, and it was [k]their task to distribute to their kinsmen. 14 (U)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 (V)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, (W)and they were bringing them into Jerusalem on the Sabbath day. So (X)I admonished them on the day they sold food. 16 Also people of Tyre were living [l]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 (Y)I [m]reprimanded the nobles of Judah and said to them, “What is this evil thing that you are doing, [n]by profaning the Sabbath day? 18 (Z)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 (AA)it came about that just as it became dark at the gates of Jerusalem before the Sabbath, I ordered that the doors be shut, [o]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 (AB)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 [p]use force against you.” From that time on they did not come on the Sabbath. 22 And I ordered the Levites that (AC)they were to purify themselves and come as gatekeepers to sanctify the Sabbath day. For this also (AD)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 [q](AE)married women from (AF)Ashdod, (AG)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 [r]only the language of his own people. 25 So (AH)I quarreled with them and cursed them, and (AI)struck some of them and pulled out their hair, and (AJ)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 (AK)Did Solomon the king of Israel not sin regarding these things? (AL)Yet among the many nations there was no king like him, and (AM)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 (AN)by acting unfaithfully against our God, by [s]marrying foreign women?” 28 Even one of the sons of Joiada, the son of Eliashib the high priest, became a son-in-law of (AO)Sanballat the Horonite, so I chased him away from me. 29 (AP)Remember them, my God, [t]because they have defiled the priesthood and the (AQ)covenant of the priesthood and the Levites.

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


  1. Nehemiah 13:1 Lit in the ears of the people
  2. Nehemiah 13:4 Lit close to
  3. Nehemiah 13:5 Or chamber
  4. Nehemiah 13:5 Or uplifted offerings
  5. Nehemiah 13:7 Or understood
  6. Nehemiah 13:7 An Ammonite, banned from the temple
  7. Nehemiah 13:7 Or chamber, and so in vv 8, 9
  8. Nehemiah 13:10 Or knew
  9. Nehemiah 13:10 Lit fled
  10. Nehemiah 13:11 Or contended with
  11. Nehemiah 13:13 Lit on them to
  12. Nehemiah 13:16 Lit in it
  13. Nehemiah 13:17 Or contended with
  14. Nehemiah 13:17 Lit and
  15. Nehemiah 13:19 Lit and commanded
  16. Nehemiah 13:21 Lit send a hand against
  17. Nehemiah 13:23 Lit given dwelling to
  18. Nehemiah 13:24 Lit according to the tongue of people and people
  19. Nehemiah 13:27 Lit giving dwelling to
  20. Nehemiah 13:29 Lit for the defilements of

Thanksgiving for Return from Captivity.

A Song of Ascents.

126 When the Lord (A)brought back [a]the captives of Zion,
We were (B)like those who dream.
Then our (C)mouth was filled with laughter
And our (D)tongue with joyful shouting;
Then they said among the nations,
“The Lord has (E)done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us;
We are (F)joyful.

Restore our fortunes, Lord,
As the [b](G)streams in the [c]South.
Those who sow in (H)tears shall harvest with (I)joyful shouting.
One who goes here and there weeping, carrying his bag of seed,
Shall indeed come again with a shout of joy, bringing his sheaves with him.


  1. Psalm 126:1 Or those who returned to
  2. Psalm 126:4 Lit stream-beds
  3. Psalm 126:4 Heb Negev

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