I also found out that 1the portions of the Levites had not been given to them, so that the Levites and the singers, who did the work, had fled each 2to his field.
3So I confronted the officials and said, 4"Why is the house of God forsaken?" And I gathered them together and set them in their stations.
Then all Judah brought 5the tithe of the grain, wine, and oil into the storehouses.
And 6I appointed as treasurers over the storehouses Shelemiah the priest, Zadok the scribe, and Pedaiah of the Levites, and as their assistant Hanan the son of Zaccur, son of Mattaniah, 7for they were considered reliable, and their duty was to distribute to their brothers.
8Remember me, O my God, concerning this, and do not wipe out my good deeds that I have done for the house of my God and for his service.
In those days I saw in Judah people treading winepresses 9on the Sabbath, and bringing in heaps of grain and loading them on donkeys, and also wine, grapes, figs, and all kinds of loads, 10which they brought into Jerusalem on the Sabbath day. And 11I warned them on the day when they sold food.
Tyrians also, who lived in the city, brought in fish and all kinds of goods and sold them on the Sabbath to the people of Judah, in Jerusalem itself!
12Then I confronted the nobles of Judah and said to them, "What is this evil thing that you are doing, 13profaning the Sabbath day?
14Did not your fathers act in this way, and did not our God bring all this disaster on us and on this city? Now you are bringing more wrath on Israel by profaning the Sabbath."
As soon as it 15began to grow dark at the gates of Jerusalem before the Sabbath, I commanded that the doors should be shut and gave orders that they should not be opened until after the Sabbath. And I stationed some of my servants at the gates, that no load might be brought in on the Sabbath day.
Then the merchants and sellers of all kinds of wares lodged outside Jerusalem once or twice.
16But I warned them and said to them, "Why do you lodge outside the wall? If you do so again, I will lay hands on you." From that time on they did not come on the Sabbath.
Then I commanded the Levites 17that they should purify themselves and come and guard the gates, to keep the Sabbath day holy. 18Remember this also in my favor, O my God, and spare me according to the greatness of your steadfast love.
In those days also I saw the Jews 19who had married women 20of Ashdod, 21Ammon, and 22Moab.
And half of their children spoke the language of Ashdod, and they could not speak the language of Judah, but only the language of each people.
23And I confronted them and cursed them and beat some of them and pulled out their hair. 24And I made them take oath in the name of God, saying, "You shall not give your daughters to their sons, or take their daughters for your sons or for yourselves.
25Did not Solomon king of Israel sin on account of such women? 26Among the many nations there was no king like him, and he was 27beloved by his God, and God made him king over all Israel. Nevertheless, foreign women made even him to sin.
Shall we then listen to you and do all this great evil and 28act treacherously against our God by marrying foreign women?"
And one of the sons of 29Jehoiada, the son of 30Eliashib the high priest, was the son-in-law of 31Sanballat the Horonite. Therefore I chased him from me.
32Remember them, O my God, because they have desecrated the priesthood 33and the covenant of the priesthood and the Levites.
34Thus I cleansed them from everything foreign, and I established the duties of the priests and Levites, each in his work;
and I provided 35for the wood offering 36at appointed times, and for the firstfruits. 37Remember me, O my God, for good.