Study Guide

Ezra and Nehemiah Nehemiah Chapter 7: Gate Master

Nehemiah Chapter 7: Gate Master

  • After finishing the wall and appointing people to positions at the temple, Nehemiah puts his brother Hanani and another guy, Hananiah the commander of the citadel, in charge of Jerusalem.
  • This is because of their piety and exceptional faithfulness, plus he thought it would be cool because their names sound so similar.
  • Nehemiah tells them not to open the city gates until the sun is hot, and that the gatekeepers should bar the doors while they're standing guard.
  • He also tells them how to appoint guards and watchmen.
  • Nehemiah notes that the city at this time was very large, but few people were living in it.
  • Next Nehemiah writes another extremely long list.
  • He records the number of Israelites to return to the city in total, listing the number who came along with each head of family.
  • He lists the priests, Levites, temple servants, descendants of Solomon's servants, and those who couldn't prove their descent from Israel.
  • The people descended from priests but couldn't prove it were excluded from the priesthood. They weren't allowed to partake of the holy food until a legit priest, using the magic seer stones Urim and Thummim, could determine if they were really part of Israel.
  • Nehemiah says that the entire assembly of Israel numbered 42,360 people, not including their 7,337 male and female slaves.
  • He adds that they had 245 male and female singers. No backup dancers, though.
  • He even lists the number of horses, mules, camels, and donkeys, and goes on to list the amount of gold, silver, basins, and priestly robes.
  • The special classes of people listed above (priests, Levites, gatekeepers, etc.) and some of the people settle in their own towns outside the city.

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