Nehemiah 9; Nehemiah 10; Nehemiah 11

1 On the twenty-fourth day of that same month, the people of Israel gathered. They did not eat, and they wore rough cloth and put dust on their heads to show their sadness. 2 Those people whose ancestors were from Israel had separated themselves from all foreigners. They stood and confessed their sins and their ancestors' sins. 3 For a fourth of the day they stood where they were and read from the Book of the Teachings of the Lord their God. For another fourth of the day they confessed their sins and worshiped the Lord their God. 4 These Levites were standing on the stairs: Jeshua, Bani, Kadmiel, Shebaniah, Bunni, Sherebiah, Bani, and Kenani. They called out to the Lord their God with loud voices. 5 Then these Levites spoke: Jeshua, Kadmiel, Bani, Hashabneiah, Sherebiah, Hodiah, Shebaniah, and Pethahiah. They said, "Stand up and praise the Lord your God, who lives forever and ever." "Blessed be your wonderful name. It is more wonderful than all blessing and praise. 6 You are the only Lord. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, with all the stars. You made the earth and everything on it, the seas and everything in them; you give life to everything. The heavenly army worships you. 7 "You are the Lord, the God who chose Abram and brought him out of Ur in Babylonia and named him Abraham. 8 You found him faithful to you, so you made an agreement with him to give his descendants the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Jebusites, and Girgashites. You have kept your promise, because you do what is right. 9 "You saw our ancestors suffering in Egypt and heard them cry out at the Red Sea. 10 You did signs and miracles against the king of Egypt, and against all his officers and all his people, because you knew how proud they were. You became as famous as you are today. 11 You divided the sea in front of our ancestors; they walked through on dry ground. But you threw the people chasing them into the deep water, like a stone thrown into mighty waters. 12 You led our ancestors with a pillar of cloud by day and with a pillar of fire at night. It lit the way they were supposed to go. 13 You came down to Mount Sinai and spoke from heaven to our ancestors. You gave them fair rules and true teachings, good orders and commands. 14 You told them about your holy Sabbath and gave them commands, orders, and teachings through your servant Moses. 15 When they were hungry, you gave them bread from heaven. When they were thirsty, you brought them water from the rock. You told them to enter and take over the land you had promised to give them. 16 "But our ancestors were proud and stubborn and did not obey your commands. 17 They refused to listen; they forgot the miracles you did for them. So they became stubborn and turned against you, choosing a leader to take them back to slavery. But you are a forgiving God. You are kind and full of mercy. You do not become angry quickly, and you have great love. So you did not leave them. 18 Our ancestors even made an idol of a calf for themselves. They said, 'This is your god, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.' They spoke against you. 19 "You have great mercy, so you did not leave them in the desert. The pillar of cloud guided them by day, and the pillar of fire led them at night, lighting the way they were to go. 20 You gave your good Spirit to teach them. You gave them manna to eat and water when they were thirsty. 21 You took care of them for forty years in the desert; they needed nothing. Their clothes did not wear out, and their feet did not swell. 22 "You gave them kingdoms and nations; you gave them more land. and the country of Og king of Bashan. 23 You made their children as many as the stars in the sky, and you brought them into the land that you told their fathers to enter and take over. 24 So their children went into the land and took over. The Canaanites lived there, but you defeated them for our ancestors. You handed over to them the Canaanites, their kings, and the people of the land. Our ancestors could do what they wanted with them. 25 They captured strong, walled cities and fertile land. They took over houses full of good things, wells that were already dug, vineyards, olive trees, and many fruit trees. They ate until they were full and grew fat; they enjoyed your great goodness. 26 "But they were disobedient and turned against you and ignored your teachings. Your prophets warned them to come back to you, but they killed those prophets and spoke against you. 27 So you handed them over to their enemies, and their enemies treated them badly. But in this time of trouble our ancestors cried out to you, and you heard from heaven. You had great mercy and gave them saviors who saved them from the power of their enemies. 28 But as soon as they had rest, they again did what was evil. So you left them to their enemies who ruled over them. When they cried out to you again, you heard from heaven. Because of your mercy, you saved them again and again. 29 You warned them to return to your teachings, but they were proud and did not obey your commands. If someone obeys your laws, he will live, but they sinned against your laws. They were stubborn, unwilling, and disobedient. 30 You were patient with them for many years and warned them by your Spirit through the prophets, but they did not pay attention. So you handed them over to other countries. 31 But because your mercy is great, you did not kill them all or leave them. You are a kind and merciful God. 32 "And so, our God, you are the great and mighty and wonderful God. You keep your agreement of love. Do not let all our trouble seem unimportant to you. This trouble has come to us, to our kings and our leaders, to our priests and prophets, to our ancestors and all your people from the days of the kings of Assyria until today. 33 You have been fair in everything that has happened to us; you have been loyal, but we have been wicked. 34 Our kings, leaders, priests, and ancestors did not obey your teachings; they did not pay attention to the commands and warnings you gave them. 35 Even when our ancestors were living in their kingdom, enjoying all the good things you had given them, enjoying the land that was fertile and full of room, they did not stop their evil ways. 36 "Look, we are slaves today in the land you gave our ancestors. They were to enjoy its fruit and its good things, but look, we are slaves here. 37 The land's great harvest belongs to the kings you have put over us because of our sins. Those kings rule over us and our cattle as they please, so we are in much trouble. 38 "Because of all this, we are making an agreement in writing, and our leaders, Levites, and priests are putting their seals on it."
1 These are the men who sealed the agreement: Nehemiah the governor, son of Hacaliah. Zedekiah, 2 Seraiah, Azariah, Jeremiah, 3 Pashhur, Amariah, Malkijah, 4 Hattush, Shebaniah, Malluch, 5 Harim, Meremoth, Obadiah, 6 Daniel, Ginnethon, Baruch, 7 Meshullam, Abijah, Mijamin, 8 Maaziah, Bilgai, and Shemaiah. These are the priests. 9 These are the Levites who sealed it: Jeshua son of Azaniah, Binnui of the sons of Henadad, Kadmiel, 10 and their fellow Levites: Shebaniah, Hodiah, Kelita, Pelaiah, Hanan, 11 Mica, Rehob, Hashabiah, 12 Zaccur, Sherebiah, Shebaniah, 13 Hodiah, Bani, and Beninu. 14 These are the leaders of the people who sealed the agreement: 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. 28 The rest of the people took an oath. They were the priests, Levites, gatekeepers, singers, Temple servants, all those who separated themselves from foreigners to keep the Teachings of God, and also their wives and their sons and daughters who could understand. 29 They joined their fellow Israelites and their leading men in taking an oath, which was tied to a curse in case they broke the oath. They promised to follow the Teachings of God, which they had been given through Moses the servant of God, and to obey all the commands, rules, and laws of the Lord our God. 30 They said: We promise not to let our daughters marry foreigners nor to let our sons marry their daughters. 31 Foreigners may bring goods or grain to sell on the Sabbath, but we will not buy on the Sabbath or any holy day. Every seventh year we will not plant, and that year we will forget all that people owe us. 32 We will be responsible for the commands to pay for the service of the Temple of our God. We will give an eighth of an ounce of silver each year. 33 It is for the bread that is set out on the table; the regular grain offerings and burnt offerings; the offerings on the Sabbaths, New Moon festivals, and special feasts; the holy offerings; the offerings to remove the sins of the Israelites so they will belong to God; and for the work of the Temple of our God. 34 We, the priests, the Levites, and the people, have thrown lots to decide at what time of year each family must bring wood to the Temple. The wood is for burning on the altar of the Lord our God, and we will do this as it is written in the Teachings. 35 We also will bring the first fruits from our crops and the first fruits of every tree to the Temple each year. 36 We will bring to the Temple our firstborn sons and cattle and the firstborn of our herds and flocks, as it is written in the Teachings. We will bring them to the priests who are serving in the Temple. 37 We will bring to the priests at the storerooms of the Temple the first of our ground meal, our offerings, the fruit from all our trees, and our new wine and oil. And we will bring a tenth of our crops to the Levites, who will collect these things in all the towns where we work. 38 A priest of Aaron's family must be with the Levites when they receive the tenth of the people's crops. The Levites must bring a tenth of all they receive to the Temple of our God to put in the storerooms of the treasury. 39 The people of Israel and the Levites are to bring to the storerooms the gifts of grain, new wine, and oil. That is where the utensils for the Temple are kept and where the priests who are serving, the gatekeepers, and singers stay. We will not ignore the Temple of our God.
1 The leaders of Israel lived in Jerusalem. But the rest of the people threw lots to choose one person out of every ten to come and live in Jerusalem, the holy city. The other nine could stay in their own cities. 2 The people blessed those who volunteered to live in Jerusalem. 3 These are the area leaders who lived in Jerusalem. (Some people lived on their own land in the cities of Judah. These included Israelites, priests, Levites, Temple servants, and descendants of Solomon's servants. 4 Others from the families of Judah and Benjamin lived in Jerusalem.) These are the descendants of Judah who moved into Jerusalem. There was Athaiah son of Uzziah. (Uzziah was the son of Zechariah, the son of Amariah. Amariah was the son of Shephatiah, the son of Mahalalel. Mahalalel was a descendant of Perez.) 5 There was also Masseiah son of Baruch. (Baruch was the son of Col-Hozeh, the son of Hazaiah. Hazaiah was the son of Adaiah, the son of Joiarib. Joiarib was the son of Zechariah, a descendant of Shelah.) 6 All the descendants of Perez who lived in Jerusalem totaled 468 men. They were soldiers. 7 These are descendants of Benjamin who moved into Jerusalem. There was Sallu son of Meshullam. (Meshullam was the son of Joed, the son of Pedaiah. Pedaiah was the son of Kolaiah, the son of Maaseiah. Maaseiah was the son of Ithiel, the son of Jeshaiah.) 8 Following him were Gabbai and Sallai, for a total of 928 men. 9 Joel son of Zicri was appointed over them, and Judah son of Hassenuah was second in charge of the new area of the city. 10 These are the priests who moved into Jerusalem. There was Jedaiah son of Joiarib, Jakin, 11 and Seraiah son of Hilkiah, the supervisor in the Temple. (Hilkiah was the son of Meshullam, the son of Zadok. Zadok was the son of Meraioth, the son of Ahitub.) 12 And there were others with them who did the work for the Temple. All together there were 822 men. Also there was Adaiah son of Jeroham. (Jeroham was the son of Pelaliah, the son of Amzi. Amzi was the son of Zechariah, the son of Pashhur. Pashhur was the son of Malkijah.) 13 And there were family heads with him. All together there were 242 men. Also there was Amashsai son of Azarel. (Azarel was the son of Ahzai, the son of Meshillemoth. Meshillemoth was the son of Immer.) 14 And there were brave men with Amashsai. All together there were 128 men. Zabdiel son of Haggedolim was appointed over them. 15 These are the Levites who moved into Jerusalem. There was Shemaiah son of Hasshub. (Hasshub was the son of Azrikam, the son of Hashabiah. Hashabiah was the son of Bunni.) 16 And there were Shabbethai and Jozabad, two of the leaders of the Levites who were in charge of the work outside the Temple. 17 There was Mattaniah son of Mica. (Mica was the son of Zabdi, the son of Asaph.) Mattaniah was the director who led the people in thanksgiving and prayer. There was Bakbukiah, who was second in charge over his fellow Levites. And there was Abda son of Shammua. (Shammua was the son of Galal, the son of Jeduthun.) 18 All together 284 Levites lived in the holy city of Jerusalem. 19 The gatekeepers who moved into Jerusalem were Akkub, Talmon, and others with them. There was a total of 172 men who guarded the city gates. 20 The other Israelites, priests, and Levites lived on their own land in all the cities of Judah. 21 The Temple servants lived on the hill of Ophel, and Ziha and Gishpa were in charge of them. 22 Uzzi son of Bani was appointed over the Levites in Jerusalem. (Bani was the son of Hashabiah, the son of Mattaniah. Mattaniah was the son of Mica.) Uzzi was one of Asaph's descendants, who were the singers responsible for the service of the Temple. 23 The singers were under the king's orders, which regulated them day by day. 24 Pethahiah son of Meshezabel was the king's spokesman. (Meshezabel was a descendant of Zerah, the son of Judah.) 25 Some of the people of Judah lived in villages with their surrounding fields. They lived in Kiriath Arba and its surroundings, in Dibon and its surroundings, in Jekabzeel and its surroundings, 26 in Jeshua, Moladah, Beth Pelet, 27 Hazar Shual, Beersheba and its surroundings, 28 in Ziklag and Meconah and its surroundings, 29 in En Rimmon, Zorah, Jarmuth, 30 Zanoah, Adullam and their villages, in Lachish and the fields around it, and in Azekah and its surroundings. So they settled from Beersheba all the way to the Valley of Hinnom. 31 The descendants of the Benjaminites from Geba lived in Micmash, Aija, Bethel and its surroundings, 32 in Anathoth, Nob, Ananiah, 33 Hazor, Ramah, Gittaim, 34 Hadid, Zeboim, Neballat, 35 Lod, Ono, and in the Valley of the Craftsmen. 36 Some groups of the Levites from Judah settled in the land of Benjamin.
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