|Overview - Nehemiah 13|
|1||Upon the reading of the law, separation is made from the mixed multitude.|
|4||Nehemiah, at his return, causes the chambers to be cleansed.|
|10||He reforms the offices in the house of God;|
|15||the violation of the sabbath;|
|23||and the marriages with the strange wives.|
Nehemiah 13:31 (King James Version)
And for the wood offering, at times appointed, and for the firstfruits. Remember me, O my God, for good.
- the wood
- Nehemiah 13:14 Nehemiah 13:22 ; Psalms 25:7 ; Psalms 26:8 Psalms 26:9 106:4 Luke 23:42 Of Nehemiah, the author and principal actor in the eventsrecorded in this book, the Jews speak as one of the greatest menof their nation. His concern for his country entitles him tothe character of the first patriot that ever lived. Descended,according to some, of the family of Aaron, or according toothers, of the tribe of Judah and allied to the royal family ofDavid, in the course of Divine Providence, he was a captive inBabylon: but there his excellences were so apparent, that hewas chosen by the Persian king to fill an office the mostrespectable and the most confidential in the whole court. Herehe lived in ease and affluence: he lacked no good thing; andhere he might have continued to live, in the same affluence, andin the same confidence; but he could enjoy neither, so long ashe knew his people distressed, the sepulchres of his fatherstrodden under foot, the altars of his God overturned, and hisworship either totally neglected or corrupted. He sought thepeace of Jerusalem; prayed for it; and was willing to sacrificewealth, ease, safety, and even life itself, if he might be theinstrument of restoring the desolations of Israel. And God, whosaw the desire of his heart, and knew the excellences with whichhe had endowed him, granted his request, and gave him the highhonour of restoring the desolated city of his ancestors, and thepure worship of their God. The opposition of Sanballat and theSamaritans, and the firmness and zeal with which he repelledtheir insults and ineffectual efforts cannot be read without theliveliest emotions; and will afford to the latest times, a nobleand animating example of distinguished patriotism, united withthe sincerest devotion to the interests of religion. The virtueand piety of this great and good man, appear with equal lustrein the numerous and important reformations he effected. Herelieved the people from their hardships and oppressions, byabolishing the harsh and usurious practices of the nobles andrulers; gave up his own revenue, as governor of the province,for the benefit of the people; and, as a further means ofconciliating their affections, exhibited an example of the mostprincely hospitality. As the best security for good morals, andthe better observance of the laws of God, he re-established theoffices of public worship, and prevented the profanation of thesabbath, which had arrived at a shameful excess; he furnishedthe returned captives with authentic registers, and enabledthem, in the best manner possible, after so long and calamitousan interval, to trace the genealogies, and claim the inheritanceof their respective families; and further, he accomplished theseparation of the Jewish people from the mixed multitude, withwhich they had been incorporated, and annulled the numerousmarriages which they had made with heathens and idolaters ofevery description. For disinterestedness, philanthropy,patriotism, prudence, courage, zeal, humanity, and every virtuethat constitutes a great mind, and proves a soul in deepcommunion with God, Nehemiah will ever stand conspicuous amongthe greatest men of the Jewish nation; and an exemplar worthy ofbeing copied by the first patriots in every nation under heaven.