Nehemiah 1; Nehemiah 2; Nehemiah 3; Nehemiah 4; Nehemiah 5

1 The words of Nehemias the son of Helchias. And it came to pass in the month of Casleu, in the twentieth year, as I was in the castle of Susa, 2 That Hanani one of my brethren came, he and some men of Juda; and I asked them concerning the Jews, that remained and were left of the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem. 3 And they said to me: They that have remained, and are left of the captivity there in the province, are in great affliction, and reproach: and the wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and the gates thereof are burnt with fire. 4 And when I had heard these words, I sat down, and wept, and mourned for many days: and I fasted, and prayed before the face of the God of heaven. 5 And I said: I beseech thee, O Lord God of heaven, strong, great, and terrible, who keepest covenant and mercy with those that love thee, and keep thy commandments: 6 Let thy ears be attentive, and thy eyes open, to hear the prayer of thy servant, which I pray before thee now, night and day, for the children of Israel thy servants: and I confess the sins of the children of Israel, by which they have sinned against thee: I and my father’s house have sinned. 7 We have been seduced by vanity, and have not kept thy commandments, and ceremonies and judgments, which thou hast commanded thy servant Moses. 8 Remember the word that thou commandedst to Moses thy servant, saying: If you shall transgress, I will scatter you abroad among the nations: 9 But if you return to me, and keep my commandments, and do them, though you should be led away to the uttermost parts of the world, I will gather you from thence, and bring you back to the place which I have chosen for my name to dwell there. 10 And these are thy servants, and thy people: whom thou hast redeemed by thy great strength, and by thy mighty hand. 11 I beseech thee, O Lord, let thy ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant, and to the prayer of thy servants who desire to fear thy name: and direct thy servant this day, and give him mercy before this man. For I was the king’s cupbearer.
1 And it came to pass in the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of Artaxerxes the king: that wine was before him, and I took up the wine, and gave it to the king: and I was as one languishing away before his face. 2 And the king said to me: Why is thy countenance sad, seeing thou dost not appear to be sick? this is not without cause, but some evil, I know not what, is in thy heart. And I was seized with an exceeding great fear: 3 And I said to the king: O king, live for ever: why should not my countenance be sorrowful, seeing the city of the place of the sepulchres of my fathers is desolate, and the gates thereof are burnt with fire? 4 Then the king said to me: For what dost thou make request? And I prayed to the God of heaven, 5 And I said to the king: If it seem good to the king, and if thy servant hath found favour in thy sight, that thou wouldst send me into Judea to the city of the sepulchre of my father, and I will build it. 6 And the king said to me, and the queen that sat by him: For how long shall thy journey be, and when wilt thou return? And it pleased the king, and he sent me: and I fixed him a time. 7 And I said to the king: If it seem good to the king, let him give me letters to the governors of the country beyond the river, that they convey me over, till I come into Judea: 8 And a letter to Asaph the keeper of the king’s forest, to give me timber that I may cover the gates of the tower of the house, and the walls of the city, and the house that I shall enter into. And the king gave me according to the good hand of my God with me. 9 And I came to the governors of the country beyond the river, and gave them the king’s letters. And the king had sent with me captains of soldiers, and horsemen. 10 And Sanaballat the Horonite, and Tobias the servant, the Ammonite, heard it, and it grieved them exceedingly, that a man was come, who sought the prosperity of the children of Israel. 11 And I came to Jerusalem, and was there three days. 12 And I arose in the night, I and some few men with me, and I told not any man what God had put in my heart to do in Jerusalem, and there was no beast with me, but the beast that I rode upon. 13 And I went out by night by the gate of the valley, and before the dragon fountain, and to the dung gate, and I viewed the wall of Jerusalem which was broken down, and the gates thereof which were consumed with fire. 14 And I passed to the gate of the fountain, and to the king’s aqueduct, and there was no place for the beast on which I rode to pass. 15 And I went up in the night by the torrent, and viewed the wall, and going back I came to the gate of the valley, and returned. 16 But the magistrates knew not whither I went, or what I did: neither had I as yet told any thing to the Jews, or to the priests, or to the nobles, or to the magistrates, or to the rest that did the work. 17 Then I said to them: You know the affliction wherein we are, because Jerusalem is desolate, and the gates thereof are consumed with fire: come, and let us build up the walls of Jerusalem, and let us be no longer a reproach. 18 And I shewed them how the hand of my God was good with me, and the king’s words, which he had spoken to me, and I said: Let us rise up, and build. And their hands were strengthened in good. 19 But Sanaballat the Horonite, and Tobias the servant, the Ammonite, and Gossem the Arabian heard of it, and they scoffed at us, and despised us, and said: What is this thing that you do? are you going to rebel against the king? 20 And I answered them, and said to them: The God of heaven he helpeth us, and we are his servants: let us rise up and build: but you have no part, nor justice, nor remembrance in Jerusalem.
1 Then Eliasib the high priest arose, and his brethren the priests, and they built the flock gate: they sanctified it, and set up the doors thereof, even unto the tower of a hundred cubits they sanctified it unto the tower of Hananeel. 2 And next to him the men of Jericho built: and next to them built Zachur the son of Amri. 3 But the fish gate the sons of Asnaa built: they covered it, and set up the doors thereof, and the locks, and the bars. And next to them built Marimuth the son of Urias the son of Accus. 4 And next to him built Mosollam the son of Barachias, the son of Merezebel, and next to them built Sadoc the son of Baana. 5 And next to them the Thecuites built: but their great men did not put their necks to the work of their Lord. 6 And Joiada the son of Phasea, and Mosollam the son of Besodia built the old gate: they covered it and set up the doors thereof, and the locks, and the bars. 7 And next to them built Meltias the Gabaonite, and Jadon the Meronathite, the men of Gabaon and Maspha, for the governor that was in the country beyond the river. 8 And next to him built Eziel the son of Araia the goldsmith: and next to him built Ananias the son of the perfumer: and they left Jerusalem unto the wall of the broad street. 9 And next to him built Raphaia the son of Hur, lord of the street of Jerusalem. 10 And next to him Jedaia the son of Haromaph over against his own house: and next to him built Hattus the son of Hasebonia. 11 Melchias the son of Herem, and Hasub the son of Phahath Moab, built half the street, and the tower of the furnaces. 12 And next to him built Sellum the son of Alohes, lord of half the street of Jerusalem, he and his daughters. 13 And the gate of the valley Hanun built, and the inhabitants of Zanoe: they built it, and set up the doors thereof, and the locks, and the bars, and a thousand cubits in the wall unto the gate of the dunghill. 14 And the gate of the dunghill Melchias the son of Rechab built, lord of the street of Bethacharam: he built it, and set up the doors thereof, and the locks, and the bars. 15 And the gate of the fountain, Sellum, the son of Cholhoza, built, lord of the street of Maspha: he built it, and covered it, and set up the doors thereof, and the locks, and the bars, and the walls of the pool of Siloe unto the king’s guard, and unto the steps that go down from the city of David. 16 After him built Nehemias the son of Azboc, lord of half the street of Bethsur, as far as over against the sepulchre of David, and to the pool, that was built with great labour, and to the house of the mighty. 17 After him built the Levites, Rehum the son of Benni. After him built Hasebias, lord of half the street of Ceila in his own street. 18 After him built their brethren Bavai the son of Enadad, lord of half Ceila. 19 And next to him Aser the son of Josue, lord of Maspha, built another measure, over against the going up of the strong corner. 20 After him in the mount Baruch the son of Zachai built another measure, from the corner to the door of the house of Eliasib the high priest. 21 After him Merimuth the son of Urias the son of Haccus, built another measure, from the door of the house of Eliasib, to the end of the house of Eliasib. 22 And after him built the priests, the men of the plains of the Jordan. 23 After him built Benjamin and Hasub, over against their own house: and after him built Azarias the son of Maasias the son of Ananias over against his house. 24 After him built Bennui the son of Hanadad another measure, from the house of Azarias unto the bending, and unto the corner. 25 Phalel, the son of Ozi, over against the bending and the tower, which lieth out from the king’s high house, that is, in the court of the prison: after him Phadaia the son of Pharos. 26 And the Nathinites dwelt in Ophel, as far as over against the water gate toward the east, and the tower that stood out. 27 After him the Thecuites built another measure over against, from the great tower that standeth out unto the wall of the temple. 28 And upward from the horse gate the priests built, every man over against his house. 29 After them built Sadoc the son of Emmer over against his house. And after him built Semaia the son of Sechenias, keeper of the east gate. 30 After him built Hanania the son of Selemia, and Hanun the sixth son of Seleph, another measure: after him built Mosollam the son of Barachias over against his treasury. 31 After him Melcias the goldsmith’s son built unto the house of the Nathinites, and of the sellers of small wares, over against the judgment gate, and unto the chamber of the corner. 32 (3-31) And within the chamber of the corner of the flock gate, the goldsmiths and the merchants built.
1 And it came to pass, that when Sanaballat heard that we were building the wall he was angry: and being moved exceedingly he scoffed at the Jews. 2 And said before his brethren, and the multitude of the Samaritans: What are the silly Jews doing? Will the Gentiles let them alone? will they sacrifice and make an end in a day? are they able to raise stones out of the heaps of the rubbish, which are burnt? 3 Tobias also the Ammonite who was by him said: Let them build: if a fox go up, he will leap over their stone wall. 4 Hear thou our God, for we are despised: turn their reproach upon their own head, and give them to be despised in a land of captivity. 5 Cover not their iniquity, and let not their sin be blotted out from before thy face, because they have mocked thy builders. 6 So we built the wall, and joined it all together unto the half thereof: and the heart of the people was excited to work. 7 And it came to pass, when Sanaballat, and Tobias, and the Arabians, and the Ammonites, and the Azotians heard that the walls of Jerusalem were made up, and the breaches began to be closed, that they were exceedingly angry. 8 And they all assembled themselves together, to come, and to fight against Jerusalem, and to prepare ambushes. 9 And we prayed to our God, and set watchmen upon the wall day and night against them. 10 And Juda said: The strength of the bearer of burdens is decayed, and the rubbish is very much, and we shall not be able to build the wall. 11 And our enemies said: Let them not know, nor understand, till we come in the midst of them, and kill them, and cause the work to cease. 12 And it came to pass, that when the Jews that dwelt by them came and told us ten times, out of all the places from whence they came to us, 13 I set the people in the place behind the wall round about in order, with their swords, and spears, and bows. 14 And I looked and rose up: and I said to the chief men and the magistrates, and to the rest of the common people: be not afraid of them. Remember the Lord who is great and terrible, and fight for your brethren, your sons, and your daughters, and your wives, and your houses. 15 And it came to pass, when our enemies heard that the thing had been told us, that God defeated their counsel. And we returned all of us to the walls, every man to his work. 16 And it came to pass from that day forward, that half of their young men did the work, and half were ready for to fight, with spears, and shields, and bows, and coats of mail, and the rulers were behind them in all the house of Juda. 17 Of them that built on the wall and that carried burdens, and that laded: with one of his hands he did the work, and with the other he held a sword. 18 For every one of the builders was girded with a sword about his reins. And they built, and sounded with a trumpet by me. 19 And I said to the nobles, and to the magistrates, and to the rest of the common people: The work is great and wide, and we are separated on the wall one far from another: 20 In what place soever you shall hear the sound of the trumpet, run all thither unto us: our God will fight for us. 21 And let us do the work: and let one half of us hold our spears from the rising of the morning, till the stars appear. 22 At that time also I said to the people: Let every one with his servant stay in the midst of Jerusalem, and let us take our turns in the night, and by day, to work. 23 Now I and my brethren, and my servants, and the watchmen that followed me, did not put off our clothes: only every man stripped himself when he was to be washed.
1 Now there was a great cry of the people, and of their wives against their brethren the Jews. 2 And there were some that said: Our sons and our daughters are very many: let us take up corn for the price of them, and let us eat and live. 3 And there were some that said: Let us mortgage our lands, and our vineyards, and our houses, and let us take corn because of the famine. 4 And others said: Let us borrow money for the king’s tribute, and let us give up our fields and vineyards: 5 And now our flesh is as the flesh of our brethren: and our children as their children. Behold we bring into bondage our sons and our daughters, and some of our daughters are bondwomen already, neither have we wherewith to redeem them, and our fields and our vineyards other men possess. 6 And I was exceedingly angry when I heard their cry according to these words. 7 And my heart thought with myself: and I rebuked the nobles and magistrates, and said to them: Do you every one exact usury of your brethren? And I gathered together a great assembly against them, 8 And I said to them: We, as you know, have redeemed according to our ability our brethren the Jews, that were sold to the Gentiles: and will you then sell your brethren, for us to redeem them? And they held their peace, and found not what to answer. 9 And I said to them: The thing you do is not good: why walk you not in the fear of our God, that we be not exposed to the reproaches of the Gentiles our enemies? 10 Both I and my brethren, and my servants, have lent money and corn to many: let us all agree not to call for it again; let us forgive the debt that is owing to us. 11 Restore ye to them this day their fields, and their vineyards, and their oliveyards, and their houses: and the hundredth part of the money, and of the corn, the wine, and the oil, which you were wont to exact of them, give it rather for them. 12 And they said: We will restore, and we will require nothing of them: and we will do as thou sayest. And I called the priests and took an oath of them, to do according to what I had said. 13 Moreover I shook my lap, and said: So may God shake every man that shall not accomplish this word, out of his house, and out of his labours, thus may he be shaken out, and become empty. And all the multitude said: Amen. And they praised God. And the people did according to what was said. 14 And from the day, in which the king commanded me to be governor in the land of Juda, from the twentieth year even to the two and thirtieth year of Artaxerxes the king, for twelve years, I and my brethren did not eat the yearly allowance that was due to the governors. 15 But the former governors that had been before me, were chargeable to the people, and took of them in bread, and wine, and in money every day forty sicles: and their officers also oppressed the people. But I did not so for the fear of God. 16 Moreover I built in the work of the wall, and I bought no land, and all my servants were gathered together to the work. 17 The Jews also and the magistrates to the number of one hundred and fifty men, were at my table, besides them that came to us from among the nations that were round about us. 18 And there was prepared for me day be day one ox, and six choice rams, besides fowls, and once in ten days I gave store of divers wines, and many other things: yet I did not require my yearly allowance as governor: for the people were very much impoverished. 19 Remember me, O my God, for good according to all that I have done for this people.
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