Epistles of Thomas

December 1, 2009

Nehemiah 7-9

Filed under: Old Testament — Thomas @ 17:50
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Chapter 7 recounts that the wall was complete and Nehemiah put his brother Hanani and Hananiah the commander of the citadel in charge of Jerusalem. Nehemiah had the people assemble and he took a census of everyone. The census was quite thorough: “The whole company numbered 42,360 besides their 7,337 male and female slaves; and they also had 245 male and female singers. There were 736 horses, 245 mules, 435 camels and 6,720 donkeys” (7:66-68).

Chapter 8 records that Ezra read the Law of Moses to the people. It sounds like there was some preaching involved in this: “They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read.” While hearing the Law they realised that they should be having a festival during the seventh month so they immediately prepared for that. Then they engaged in something that we would do well at imitating: “They stood where they were and read from the Book of the Law of the LORD their God for a quarter of the day, and spent another quarter in confession and in worshipping the LORD their God.” The remainder of the chapter is taken up with a speech that reminds the people of their history and relationship with God. It ends with the state things are in today. Overall, it is remarkably like the sermon Stephen preached in Acts but without the orator being stoned.


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