And there was a great cry of the people and of their wives against their brethren the Jews.
And there were that said, We, our sons and our daughters, are many, and we must procure corn that we may eat and live.
And there were that said, We have had to pledge our fields, and our vineyards, and our houses, that we might procure corn in the dearth.
And there were that said, We have borrowed money for the king's tribute upon our fields and vineyards;
yet now our flesh is as the flesh of our brethren, our children as their children; and behold, we must bring into bondage our sons and our daughters to be servants, and some of our daughters are brought into bondage [already]; neither is it in the power of our hand [to redeem them], for other men have our fields and our vineyards.
And I was very angry when I heard their cry and these words.
And I consulted with myself; and I remonstrated with the nobles and the rulers, and said to them, Ye exact usury, every one of his brother! And I set a great assembly against them.
And I said to them, We, according to our ability, have redeemed our brethren the Jews, who were sold to the nations; and will ye even sell your brethren? or shall they be sold unto us? And they were silent and found no answer.
And I said, The thing that ye do is not good. Ought ye not to walk in the fear of our God, so as not to be the reproach of the nations our enemies?
I also, my brethren and my servants, we might exact usury of them, money and corn. I pray you, let us leave off this usury.
Restore, I pray you, to them this very day their fields, their vineyards, their olive-gardens, and their houses, also the hundredth [part] of the money, and of the corn, the wine and the oil, that ye have exacted of them.
And they said, We will restore [them], and will require nothing of them; so will we do, as thou hast said. And I called the priests, and took an oath of them, that they should do according to this promise.
Also I shook my lap, and said, So God shake out every man from his house and from his earnings, that performeth not this promise: even thus be he shaken out and emptied! And all the congregation said, Amen! And they praised Jehovah. And the people did according to this promise.
Moreover from the time that I was appointed to be their governor in the land of Judah, from the twentieth year even to the thirty-second year of Artaxerxes the king, twelve years, I and my brethren have not eaten the bread of the governor.
But the former governors that were before me had been chargeable to the people, and had taken of them bread and wine, besides forty shekels of silver: even their servants bore rule over the people. But I did not so, because of the fear of God.
Yea, also I applied myself to this work of the wall, and we bought no fields; and all my servants were gathered thither for the work.
And there were at my table a hundred and fifty of the Jews and the rulers, besides those that came to us from among the nations that were about us.
And that which was prepared daily was one ox [and] six choice sheep; also fowls were prepared for me, and once in ten days all sorts of wine in abundance. Yet for all this I demanded not the bread of the governor; for the service was heavy upon this people.
Remember for me, my God, for good, all that I have done for this people.
And it came to pass when Sanballat, and Tobijah, and Geshem the Arabian, and the rest of our enemies, heard that I had built the wall, and that there was no breach left in it (though at that time I had not set up the doors in the gates),
that Sanballat and Geshem sent to me, saying, Come, let us meet together in the villages in the plain of Ono. But they thought to do me mischief.
And I sent messengers to them, saying, I am doing a great work, and I cannot come down. Why should the work cease, whilst I leave it and come down to you?
And they sent to me four times after this sort; and I answered them in the same manner.
Then sent Sanballat his servant to me in this manner the fifth time, with an open letter in his hand,
in which was written: It is reported among the nations, and Gashmu says [it, that] thou and the Jews think to rebel, for which cause thou buildest the wall, and according to these words thou wilt become their king.
And thou hast also appointed prophets to proclaim concerning thee at Jerusalem saying, There is a king in Judah! And now it will be reported to the king according to these words. Come now therefore, and let us take counsel together.
And I sent to him, saying, There are no such things done as thou sayest, but thou feignest them out of thine own heart.
For they all would have made us afraid, saying, Their hands shall be slackened from the work, that it be not carried out. -- Now therefore strengthen my hands!
And I came to the house of Shemaiah the son of Delaiah, the son of Mehetabeel, who had shut himself up. And he said, Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple, and let us shut the doors of the temple; for they are coming to kill thee; even in the night are they coming to kill thee.
And I said, Should such a man as I flee? and who is there, that, being as I am, could go into the temple, and live? I will not go in.
And I perceived, and behold, God had not sent him; for he pronounced this prophecy against me; and Tobijah and Sanballat had hired him.
Therefore was he hired, that I should be afraid, and do so, and sin, and that they might have wherewith to spread an evil report, that they might reproach me.
My God, remember Tobijah and Sanballat according to these their works, and also the prophetess Noadiah, and the rest of the prophets who would have put me in fear.
So the wall was finished on the twenty-fifth of Elul, in fifty-two days.
And it came to pass that when all our enemies heard [of it], all the nations that were about us were afraid and were much cast down in their own eyes, and they perceived that this work was wrought by our God.
Moreover in those days the nobles of Judah sent many letters to Tobijah, and those of Tobijah came to them.
For there were many in Judah sworn to him; for he was a son-in-law of Shechaniah the son of Arah; and his son Johanan had taken the daughter of Meshullam the son of Berechiah.
Also they spoke of his good deeds before me, and reported my words to him. [And] Tobijah sent letters to put me in fear.
And it came to pass when the wall was built, and I had set up the doors, that the doorkeepers and the singers and the Levites were appointed.
And I gave my brother Hanani, and Hananiah the ruler of the citadel, charge over Jerusalem; for he was a faithful man and feared God above many.
And I said to them that the gates of Jerusalem should not be opened until the sun was hot, and that they should shut the doors and bar them while they stood by; and that there should be appointed watches of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, every one in his watch, and every one over against his house.
Now the city was large and great; but the people in it were few, and no houses were built.
And my God put into my heart to gather together the nobles, and the rulers, and the people, for registration by genealogy. And I found a genealogical register of those that had come up at the first, and I found written in it:
These are the children of the province that went up out of the captivity of those that had been carried away, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away, and who came again to Jerusalem and to Judah, every one to his city;
those who came with Zerubbabel, Jeshua, Nehemiah, Azariah, Raamiah, Nahamani, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispereth, Bigvai, Nehum, Baanah. The number of the men of the people of Israel:
The children of Parosh, two thousand one hundred and seventy-two.
The children of Shephatiah, three hundred and seventy-two.
The children of Arah, six hundred and fifty-two.
The children of Pahath-Moab, of the children of Jeshua and Joab, two thousand eight hundred and eighteen.
The children of Elam, a thousand two hundred and fifty-four.
The children of Zattu, eight hundred and forty-five.
The children of Zaccai, seven hundred and sixty.
The children of Binnui, six hundred and forty-eight.
The children of Bebai, six hundred and twenty-eight.
The children of Azgad, two thousand three hundred and twenty-two.
The children of Adonikam, six hundred and sixty-seven.
The children of Bigvai, two thousand and sixty-seven.
The children of Adin, six hundred and fifty-five.
The children of Ater of [the family of] Hezekiah, ninety-eight.
The children of Hashum, three hundred and twenty-eight.
The children of Bezai, three hundred and twenty-four.
The children of Hariph, a hundred and twelve.
The children of Gibeon, ninety-five.
The men of Bethlehem and Netophah, a hundred and eighty-eight.
The men of Anathoth, a hundred and twenty-eight.
The men of Beth-azmaveth, forty-two.
The men of Kirjath-jearim, Chephirah, and Beeroth, seven hundred and forty-three.
The men of Ramah and Geba, six hundred and twenty-one.
The men of Michmas, a hundred and twenty-two.
The men of Bethel and Ai, a hundred and twenty-three.
The men of the other Nebo, fifty-two.
The children of the other Elam, a thousand two hundred and fifty-four.
The children of Harim, three hundred and twenty.
The children of Jericho, three hundred and forty-five.
The children of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, seven hundred and twenty-one.
The children of Senaah, three thousand nine hundred and thirty.
The priests: the children of Jedaiah, of the house of Jeshua, nine hundred and seventy-three.
The children of Immer, a thousand and fifty-two.
The children of Pashhur, a thousand two hundred and forty-seven.
The children of Harim, a thousand and seventeen.
The Levites: the children of Jeshua [and] of Kadmiel, of the children of Hodvah, seventy-four.
The singers: the children of Asaph, a hundred and forty-eight.
The doorkeepers: the children of Shallum, the children of Ater, the children of Talmon, the children of Akkub, the children of Hatita, the children of Shobai, a hundred and thirty-eight.
The Nethinim: the children of Ziha, the children of Hasupha, the children of Tabbaoth,
the children of Keros, the children of Sia, the children of Padon,
the children of Lebana, the children of Hagaba, the children of Salmai,
the children of Hanan, the children of Giddel, the children of Gahar,
the children of Reaiah, the children of Rezin, the children of Nekoda,
the children of Gazzam, the children of Uzza, the children of Phaseah,
the children of Besai, the children of Meunim, the children of Nephishesim,
the children of Bakbuk, the children of Hakupha, the children of Harhur,
the children of Bazlith, the children of Mehida, the children of Harsha,
the children of Barkos, the children of Sisera, the children of Thamah,
the children of Neziah, the children of Hatipha.
The children of Solomon's servants: the children of Sotai, the children of Sophereth, the children of Perida,
the children of Jaala, the children of Darkon, the children of Giddel,
the children of Shephatiah, the children of Hattil, the children of Pochereth-Hazzebaim, the children of Amon.
All the Nethinim, and the children of Solomon's servants, three hundred and ninety-two.
And these are they that went up from Tel-melah, Tel-harsha, Cherub-Addon and Immer; but they could not shew their father's house, nor their seed, whether they were of Israel.
The children of Delaiah, the children of Tobijah, the children of Nekoda, six hundred and forty-two.
And of the priests: the children of Hobaiah, the children of Koz, the children of Barzillai, who took a wife of the daughters of Barzillai the Gileadite and was called after their name.
These sought their genealogical register, but it was not found; therefore were they, as polluted, removed from the priesthood.
And the Tirshatha said to them that they should not eat of the most holy things, till there stood up the priest with Urim and Thummim.
The whole congregation together was forty-two thousand three hundred and sixty,
besides their servants and their maids, of whom there were seven thousand three hundred and thirty-seven; and they had two hundred and forty-five singing-men and singing-women.
Their horses were seven hundred and thirty-six; their mules, two hundred and forty-five;
the camels, four hundred and thirty-five; the asses, six thousand seven hundred and twenty.
And some of the chief fathers gave to the work. The Tirshatha gave to the treasure a thousand darics of gold, fifty basons, five hundred and thirty priests' coats.
And [some] of the chief fathers gave to the treasure of the work twenty thousand darics of gold, and two thousand two hundred pounds of silver.
And that which the rest of the people gave was twenty thousand darics of gold, and two thousand pounds of silver, and sixty-seven priests' coats.
And the priests, and the Levites, and the doorkeepers, and the singers, and [some] of the people, and the Nethinim, and all Israel, dwelt in their cities. And when the seventh month came, and the children of Israel were in their cities,
all the people gathered together as one man to the open place that was before the water-gate; and they spoke to Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses, which Jehovah had commanded Israel.
And Ezra the priest brought the law before the congregation, both of men and women, and all that could hear with understanding, on the first day of the seventh month.
And he read in it before the open place that was before the water-gate from the morning until midday, in presence of the men and the women, and those that could understand. And the ears of all the people were [attentive] to the book of the law.
And Ezra the scribe stood upon a high stage of wood, which they had made for the purpose. And beside him stood Mattithiah, and Shema, and Anaiah, and Urijah, and Hilkijah, and Maaseiah on his right hand; and on his left hand, Pedaiah, and Mishael, and Malchijah, and Hashum, and Hashbaddana, Zechariah, Meshullam.
And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people, for he was above all the people; and when he opened it, all the people stood up.
And Ezra blessed Jehovah, the great God; and all the people answered, Amen, Amen! with lifting up of their hands; and they bowed their heads, and worshipped Jehovah with their faces to the ground.
And Jeshua, and Bani, and Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodijah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites, caused the people to understand the law; and the people [stood] in their place.
And they read in the law of God distinctly out of the book, and gave the sense, and caused [them] to understand the reading.
And Nehemiah, that is, the Tirshatha, and Ezra the priest the scribe, and the Levites that explained to the people, said to all the people, This day is holy to Jehovah your God: mourn not, nor weep. For all the people wept when they heard the words of the law.
And he said to them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions to them for whom nothing is prepared; for the day is holy to our Lord; and be not grieved, for the joy of Jehovah is your strength.
And the Levites quieted all the people, saying, Be still! for the day is holy; neither be grieved.
And all the people went their way, to eat and to drink, and to send portions, and to make great rejoicing. For they had understood the words that were declared to them.
And on the second day were gathered together the chief fathers of all the people, the priests, and the Levites, to Ezra the scribe, even to gain wisdom as to the words of the law.
And they found written in the law which Jehovah had commanded through Moses, that the children of Israel should dwell in booths in the feast of the seventh month,
and that they should publish and proclaim through all their cities, and at Jerusalem, saying, Go forth to the mount, and fetch olive-branches, and wild olive-branches, and myrtle-branches, and palm-branches, and branches of thick trees, to make booths, as it is written.
And the people went forth and brought [them], and made themselves booths, everyone upon the roof of his house, and in their courts, and in the courts of the house of God, and in the open space of the water-gate, and in the open space of the gate of Ephraim.
And all the congregation of them that had come back from the captivity made booths, and dwelt in the booths. For since the days of Jeshua the son of Nun until that day had not the children of Israel done so. And there was very great gladness.
Also day by day, from the first day to the last day, he read in the book of the law of God. And they observed the feast seven days; and on the eighth day was a solemn assembly, according to the ordinance.
And on the twenty-fourth day of this month the children of Israel were assembled with fasting, and with sackclothes, and earth upon them.
And the seed of Israel separated themselves from all foreigners, and stood and confessed their sins, and the iniquities of their fathers.
And they stood up in their place, and read in the book of the law of Jehovah their God a fourth part of the day; and a fourth part they confessed, and worshipped Jehovah their God.
Then stood up upon the platform of the Levites, Jeshua, and Bani, Kadmiel, Shebaniah, Bunni, Sherebiah, Bani, Chenani, and cried with a loud voice to Jehovah their God.
And the Levites, Jeshua, and Kadmiel, Bani, Hashabniah, Sherebiah, Hodijah, Shebaniah, Pethahiah, said, Stand up, bless Jehovah your God from eternity to eternity. And let [men] bless the name of thy glory, which is exalted above all blessing and praise.
Thou art the Same, thou alone, Jehovah, who hast made the heaven of heavens, and all their host, the earth and all that is therein, the seas and all that is therein. And thou quickenest them all; and the host of heaven worshippeth thee.
Thou art the Same, Jehovah Elohim, who didst choose Abram and broughtest him forth out of Ur of the Chaldees, and gavest him the name of Abraham;
and foundest his heart faithful before thee, and madest the covenant with him to give the land of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Jebusites, and the Girgashites, -- to give it to his seed; and thou hast performed thy words, for thou art righteous.
And thou sawest the affliction of our fathers in Egypt, and heardest their cry by the Red Sea;
and didst shew signs and wonders upon Pharaoh, and upon all his servants, and upon all the people of his land; for thou knewest that they dealt proudly against them, and thou didst make thee a name, as it is this day.
And thou didst divide the sea before them, and they went through the midst of the sea on dry [ground]; and their pursuers thou threwest into the depths, as a stone into the mighty waters.
And thou leddest them in the day by a pillar of cloud, and in the night by a pillar of fire, to give them light in the way wherein they should go.
And thou camest down on mount Sinai, and didst speak with them from the heavens, and gavest them right judgments and true laws, good statutes and commandments.
And thou madest known unto them thy holy sabbath, and prescribedst for them commandments and statutes and a law, through Moses thy servant.
And thou gavest them bread from the heavens for their hunger, and broughtest forth water for them out of the rock for their thirst, and didst say to them that they should go in to possess the land which thou hadst sworn to give them.
But they, our fathers, dealt proudly, and hardened their neck, and hearkened not to thy commandments,
and refused to obey, neither were they mindful of thy wonders which thou hadst done among them; but hardened their neck, and in their rebellion made a captain to return to their bondage. But thou art a +God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and of great loving-kindness, and thou forsookest them not.
Yea, when they had made them a molten calf, and said, This is thy god that brought thee up out of Egypt! and they had wrought great provocation,
yet thou in thy manifold mercies forsookest them not in the wilderness. The pillar of the cloud departed not from over them by day, to lead them on the way; neither the pillar of fire by night, to shew them light, and the way wherein they should go.
Thou gavest also thy good Spirit to instruct them, and withheldest not thy manna from their mouth, and gavest them water for their thirst.
Yea, forty years didst thou sustain them in the wilderness; they lacked nothing; their clothes grew not old, and their feet swelled not.
And thou gavest them kingdoms and peoples, and didst divide them by countries; and they possessed the land of Sihon, as well the land of the king of Heshbon, as the land of Og king of Bashan.
And their children thou didst multiply as the stars of heaven, and thou broughtest them into the land concerning which thou didst say to their fathers that they should go in to possess it.
And the children went in and possessed the land; and thou subduedst before them the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites, and gavest them into their hands, both their kings and the peoples of the land, that they might do with them as they would.
And they took strong cities, and a fat land, and possessed houses full of all good things, wells digged, vineyards and olive-gardens, and fruit trees in abundance. And they did eat and were filled, and became fat, and delighted themselves in thy great goodness.
But they were disobedient, and rebelled against thee, and cast thy law behind their backs, and slew thy prophets who testified against them to turn them to thee, and they wrought great provocations.
And thou gavest them into the hand of their oppressors, and they oppressed them; and in the time of their distress, when they cried unto thee, thou heardest them from the heavens, and according to thy manifold mercies thou gavest them saviours, who saved them out of the hand of their oppressors.
But when they had rest, they did evil again before thee; and thou didst leave them in the hand of their enemies, and they had dominion over them; and again they cried unto thee, and thou heardest [them] from the heavens, and many times didst thou deliver them, according to thy mercies.
And thou testifiedst against them, that thou mightest bring them again unto thy law; but they dealt proudly, and hearkened not unto thy commandments, but sinned against thine ordinances (which if a man do, he shall live in them); and they withdrew the shoulder, and hardened their neck, and would not hear.
And many years didst thou forbear with them, and testifiedst against them by thy Spirit through thy prophets; but they would not give ear: and thou gavest them into the hand of the peoples of the lands.
Nevertheless for thy manifold mercies' sake, thou didst not make a full end of them nor forsake them; for thou art a gracious and merciful łGod.
And now, our God, the great, the mighty, and the terrible łGod, who keepest covenant and loving-kindness, let not all the trouble seem little before thee, that hath come upon us, on our kings, on our princes, and on our priests, and on our prophets, and on our fathers, and on all thy people, since the days of the kings of Assyria unto this day.
But thou art just in all that is come upon us; for thou hast acted according to truth, and we have done wickedly.
And our kings, our princes, our priests, and our fathers, have not performed thy law, nor hearkened unto thy commandments and thy testimonies, wherewith thou didst testify against them.
And they have not served thee in their kingdom, and in thy great goodness that thou gavest them, and in the large and fat land that thou didst set before them, neither turned they from their wicked works.
Behold, we are servants this day, and the land that thou gavest unto our fathers to eat the fruit thereof and the good thereof, behold, we are bondmen in it.
And it yieldeth much increase unto the kings whom thou hast set over us because of our sins: and they have dominion over our bodies, and over our cattle, at their pleasure; and we are in great distress.
And because of all this we make a sure covenant, and write it; and our princes, our Levites, [and] our priests are at the sealing.