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Bible Commentaries

F. B. Hole's Old and New Testament Commentary

Nehemiah 7



Verses 1-73

WE HAVE a sense of relief as we commence chapter 7, since we at once discover that there were those, who far from hindering the work of God at that moment, were real helpers in the work. The wall was finished, in spite of the difficulties, the doors set up and officials appointed, that the gates might be opened and shut as would be suitable. In this connection Hanani, whom Nehemiah calls 'my brother', is again mentioned. He it was who brought the first tidings of the sad state of the city and the Jews, as narrated in Nehemiah 1:2. He is linked here with Hananiah, a ruler in the city, who is characterized as 'a faithful man', who 'feared God above many'. Since 'the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge' (Proverbs 1:7), we may be sure that this man since he had progressed above many in it, had developed wise knowledge in a substantial measure. To have had such men, identifying themselves with him in his service, must have been an encouragement, granted to him by God. Such encouragement he needed for, as verse Nehemiah 7:4 records, the city was large, the people few, and though the wall was complete the houses were not as yet built.

Israel being God's earthly people, their genealogies were of importance and had to be carefully preserved. God having stirred the heart of Nehemiah on this matter, he found that a careful register had been made years before, when the first migration took place, as recorded at the beginning of the book of Ezra, and in view of its importance we have the register again recorded. Ezra 2:1-67, is repeated almost word for word in our chapter, verses Nehemiah 7:6-69. Then the four verses that close our chapter concerning the gifts of the chief of the fathers and of the people more generally, do differ from the record of the closing verses of Ezra 2:1-70. The much larger gifts recorded here are accounted for, we presume, by later gifts that had accrued up to Nehemiah's time. The title 'Tirshatha' applied to Nehemiah as well as to Zerubbabel. The gifts were large, and the priests and people were in their cities.


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Bibliography Information
Hole, Frank Binford. "Commentary on Nehemiah 7:4". "F. B. Hole's Old and New Testament Commentary". 1947.

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