|<< Nehemiah 11 >>|
Barnes' Notes on the Bible
1And the rulers of the people dwelt at Jerusalem: the rest of the people also cast lots, to bring one of ten to dwell in Jerusalem the holy city, and nine parts to dwell in other cities.
To bring one of ten - Artificial enlargements of capitals by forcible transfers of population to them, were not unusual in ancient times. About 500 B.C., Syracuse became a great city in this way. Tradition ascribed the greatness of Rome, in part, to this cause.
2And the people blessed all the men, that willingly offered themselves to dwell at Jerusalem.
3Now these are the chief of the province that dwelt in Jerusalem: but in the cities of Judah dwelt every one in his possession in their cities, to wit, Israel, the priests, and the Levites, and the Nethinims, and the children of Solomon's servants.
4And at Jerusalem dwelt certain of the children of Judah, and of the children of Benjamin. Of the children of Judah; Athaiah the son of Uzziah, the son of Zechariah, the son of Amariah, the son of Shephatiah, the son of Mahalaleel, of the children of Perez;
See the margin reference notes. Both accounts appear to be extracts from a public official register which Nehemiah caused to be made of his census. The census itself seems to have been confined to the dwellers at Jerusalem. The subjoined table exhibits the differences between the accounts of the entire population of Jerusalem as given in Nehemiah and in Chronicles:
1 Chron ehemiah Tribes of Judah Of Pharez 468 Of Zerah 690 Tribe of Benjamin 956 928 Tribe of Levi Priests 1760 1192 Levites 284 Porters 212 172
According to Nehemiah's numbers, supplemented from Chronicles, the entire adult male population of the city was 3,734, which would give a total population of 14,936. According to Chronicles, supplemented from Nehemiah, the adult males were 4,370, and consequently the entire population, would have been 17,480. As the Nethinims and the Israelites of Ephraim and Manasseh 1 Chronicles 9:3 are not included in either list, we may conclude that the actual number of the inhabitants, after the efforts recorded in Nehemiah 11:1-2, was not much short of 20,000.
5And Maaseiah the son of Baruch, the son of Colhozeh, the son of Hazaiah, the son of Adaiah, the son of Joiarib, the son of Zechariah, the son of Shiloni.
6All the sons of Perez that dwelt at Jerusalem were four hundred threescore and eight valiant men.
7And these are the sons of Benjamin; Sallu the son of Meshullam, the son of Joed, the son of Pedaiah, the son of Kolaiah, the son of Maaseiah, the son of Ithiel, the son of Jesaiah.
8And after him Gabbai, Sallai, nine hundred twenty and eight.
9And Joel the son of Zichri was their overseer: and Judah the son of Senuah was second over the city.
10Of the priests: Jedaiah the son of Joiarib, Jachin.
11Seraiah the son of Hilkiah, the son of Meshullam, the son of Zadok, the son of Meraioth, the son of Ahitub, was the ruler of the house of God.
12And their brethren that did the work of the house were eight hundred twenty and two: and Adaiah the son of Jeroham, the son of Pelaliah, the son of Amzi, the son of Zechariah, the son of Pashur, the son of Malchiah,
13And his brethren, chief of the fathers, two hundred forty and two: and Amashai the son of Azareel, the son of Ahasai, the son of Meshillemoth, the son of Immer,
14And their brethren, mighty men of valour, an hundred twenty and eight: and their overseer was Zabdiel, the son of one of the great men.
15Also of the Levites: Shemaiah the son of Hashub, the son of Azrikam, the son of Hashabiah, the son of Bunni;
16And Shabbethai and Jozabad, of the chief of the Levites, had the oversight of the outward business of the house of God.
The outward business of the house of God - Such as the collection of the newly-imposed tax Nehemiah 10:32, the providing of the regular sacrifices, the renewal of vestments, and the like.
17And Mattaniah the son of Micha, the son of Zabdi, the son of Asaph, was the principal to begin the thanksgiving in prayer: and Bakbukiah the second among his brethren, and Abda the son of Shammua, the son of Galal, the son of Jeduthun.
The principal to begin the thanksgiving - i. e., "the precentor," or "leader of the choir."
18All the Levites in the holy city were two hundred fourscore and four.
19Moreover the porters, Akkub, Talmon, and their brethren that kept the gates, were an hundred seventy and two.
20And the residue of Israel, of the priests, and the Levites, were in all the cities of Judah, every one in his inheritance.
The returned community, though consisting mainly of members of the two tribes, represented the entire people of Israel. The ground, however, which they occupied, was not the whole land, but that which had constituted the kingdom of Judah.
21But the Nethinims dwelt in Ophel: and Ziha and Gispa were over the Nethinims.
Ophel, the southern spur of the temple hill, having a wall of its own Nehemiah 3:27 might be reckoned either in Jerusalem or outside it. Here it is made a separate place.
22The overseer also of the Levites at Jerusalem was Uzzi the son of Bani, the son of Hashabiah, the son of Mattaniah, the son of Micha. Of the sons of Asaph, the singers were over the business of the house of God.
The business intended was probably the internal business, as distinct from the "outward business" Nehemiah 11:16 : a part of which was the apportionment of the royal bounty among the members of the choir Nehemiah 11:23.
23For it was the king's commandment concerning them, that a certain portion should be for the singers, due for every day.
The goodwill of Artaxerxes toward the ministers employed in the temple service, had been previously shown by his exempting them from taxation of every kind Ezra 7:24. Now, it would seem, he had gone further and assigned to the singers an allowance from the royal revenue.
24And Pethahiah the son of Meshezabeel, of the children of Zerah the son of Judah, was at the king's hand in all matters concerning the people.
It is difficult to say what office Pethahiah filled. So far as we know, the only regular officers under the Persian system of government were the satrap, the subsatrap, the permanent royal secretary, the commandant, and the occasional commissary.
25And for the villages, with their fields, some of the children of Judah dwelt at Kirjatharba, and in the villages thereof, and at Dibon, and in the villages thereof, and at Jekabzeel, and in the villages thereof,
Kirjath-arba - i. e., Hebron. In the absence of the Hebrews during the captivity, the place had recovered its old name Joshua 15:13.
26And at Jeshua, and at Moladah, and at Bethphelet,
Many of the places mentioned in these verses are mentioned in Joshua 15:27-39; Joshua 18:21-28.
27And at Hazarshual, and at Beersheba, and in the villages thereof,
28And at Ziklag, and at Mekonah, and in the villages thereof,
29And at Enrimmon, and at Zareah, and at Jarmuth,
30Zanoah, Adullam, and in their villages, at Lachish, and the fields thereof, at Azekah, and in the villages thereof. And they dwelt from Beersheba unto the valley of Hinnom.
31The children also of Benjamin from Geba dwelt at Michmash, and Aija, and Bethel, and in their villages,
32And at Anathoth, Nob, Ananiah,
33Hazor, Ramah, Gittaim,
34Hadid, Zeboim, Neballat,
35Lod, and Ono, the valley of craftsmen.
36And of the Levites were divisions in Judah, and in Benjamin.
Of the Levites were divisions - i. e., "the Levites were scattered among various towns both in Judah and Benjamin."