Chapter  11

The leaders of the people lived in Jerusalem and the rest of the people cast lots
to bring 10% or 1 in ten into the city.

there you have those came into the city

then the Villages outside Jerusalem   were listed where they lived


Chapter 12   Priests and Levites

so they were listed

Then they dedicated the wall

Then again on that day they appoointed men in charge of the storerooms

the contributions: tithes, offereings etc


Chapter 13    Final Reforms of Nehemiah

What a leader . Travels from cupbearer  – one serving and watching the King –

to leading a nation in a horrendus task in record time

His final prayers and comments before God his Maker


Chapter  Look who shows up!!  Last book, the priest: Ezra

He reads from the book of the Law

He read it all morning until mid-day. Then they taught the Law
To help the people understand it.  People were weeping

SO Nehemiah tells them to rejoice, not to weep.

They Celebrate the Feast of Booths


Chapter 9   Prayers of Confession

People gathered in sackcloth and ashes: Typical dress for confession

History of God with his people is recorded and rehearsed, praising God

Chapter 10   Sealing the Covenant

After the people were taught from the book of the Law
and after the people confessed their sins and
again rehearsed the acts of guidance and deliverance for the people

There is a great list again of the people who sealed the Covenant
The society is re-establishing itself, under Godly Leadership


Chapter 5

Along with Opposition to the work, there was Oppression of the poor, people had
to mortgage their fields and properties to buy basic groceries: wheat, and grains

So Nehemiah cried out against the people who were oppressing their fellow Jews
He used an Israelie symbol to call on God to shake the people:
VS. 13   “he shook out the fold of his garment”  nothing was hiding
Then Nehemiah turned on the taps of his own generosity.

Chapter 6…

Even though the people bended low for this practice, the Leaders were
even more disgusted. They’d had it with Nehemiah. So they called for him
to meet with them

Basically he said, NO way…why waste my time….He knew their intentions
Later Jesus had the same concept when people really wanted to eliminiate
Him, he didn’t show up.

The summary here was that the wall was re-built in 52 days. It got around
even to the nations all around.

Then the press got wind of it, and more pressure, but Nehemiah held his ground


Chapter 7

Nehemiah appointed his brother, Hanani, the one who originally told Nehemiah
the problem way back in captivity; then also appoints another fellow: very

The rest of the chapter is a long list of the returned exiles and the total numbers
within each family

Over 42, 000 people plus servants and singers returned




Ed. note   all the sections of Nehemiah are longer than usual

Chapter 1


Cupbearer:  Nehemiah

Nehemiah hears a report from his brother Hanani, early in the book that
the walls of Jerusalem were still in disrepair. That happened because of the fall of
Jerusalem during the time of Manasseh, son of Hezekiah and the exile began in and
around the year 586 B.C.  You might recall that from 2 Chronicles, but also we’ll
see it again in Isaiah 36-39

Chapter 2       Nehemiah, as cupbearer to king serves the king wine when he desires it

Then he goes one day and his face is sad looking. The king enquires and Nehemiah
has an opening to tell him the story….Of course, he has fasted and prayed before he
ever goes to tell the king the story. So he does, and requests from the king, official
letters for authority, supplies to build the walls, and time to do it

Naturally the King gave him all his requests.

**** remember with Ezra: he prays for protection and goes.  We are different and
do things different ways, but still with Godly intention


Chapter 3……List of door to door families who built the wall in front of their place
and those who chipped in to build the gates. The gates went up first then the
adjoining walls to the next gate, etc


Chapter 4.    Naturally here comes opposition to the work.  You had a couple of
leaders who were taxing the people, also in the group were leaders of nations
nearby who didn’t want to see a superpower revived.

NOTICE  The use of God ; not in prayers, just in Exclamation!!

OMG is a common phrase today, but how many people actually Know God
to be able to really sigh in prayer with such degradation of His Name






When a leader is needed God finds that person and shows the way


NEHEMIAH is just the person at this time of history

He hears the story of the walls broken down in Jerusalem which is a problem
for those living there and he gets concerned

First step: PRAYERS

Second step: Permission from King  “set a time”

so he goes to re-build the walls with everyone chipping in;

but not without : Opposition/sacrifice/wisdom/generosity/success


Chapter 8

So the growth of Judah and former residents of Jerusalem grew and flourished
and this chapter records the genealogies and people who returned.

Ezra gathered a group with him to pray for protection:

         vs. 22    “for I was ashamed to ask the king for a band of soldiers
                         and horsemen to protect us against the enemy on our way,
                      since we had told the king,

               “The hand of our God is for good on all who seek him,
                          and the power of his wrath is against all who forsake him”


Then the priests were appointed to guard the offerings

Chapter 9

Ezras’ great prayer was based on the sin of intermarriage and you see his prayer recorded in this great chapter


Chapter 10

Then the people continued with great confession of sin and Ezra finished it up by fasting and praying for

responsible action to accompany that confession

Those guilty of intermarriage were often found to be sons of priests and they were to put away their wives:

so that group is listed, and  as you can see  it’s a large group

EZRA 4-7 Opposition, Victory, and Growth

Chapter 4

Whenever there are builders, there is opposition: whether you want to build a new house, car, group, idea
or in this case


This is one example of the opposition to building the temple.

when we get to the next book–a few days from now-we’ll see opposition to re-build the walls
of Jerusalem

Jews want to build their heritage: others oppose them, sometimes violently  This time
though they opposed by appealing to the King of his possible lack of territorial rights
and more significantly, lost taxes. MONEY SPEAKS

So it ceased the building until the second year of Darius, King of Persia


Chapter 5


This records the re-building of the structure, under the leadership of two prophets: Haggai
and Zechariah in the name of God

This time when the names of the builders were asked for, the response said basically: We follow
God and the decree from Cyrus, king of Persia. That softened the blow


Chapter 6

So Darius checked out the facts, looking for the decree from Cyrus. When he found it, he quashed the

Then they could in all conscience Celebrate the Passover with the returned exiles



Chapter 7

So then, Ezra was sent to teach the people….vs 9 “for the good hand of his God was on him”




EZRA:   The priest of the most High God, receives encouragement
as a Proclamation comes from Cyrus, king of Persia to let the Jews
return to their homeland

This was prophesied by Jeremiah that 70 years would pass before
God allowed the people to return. So we estimate that the year
would be 518-516  b.c.


CHAPTER  2        The Exiles Return

The great list of those who returned to Jerusalem is given here: quite the list


CHAPTER 3      Rebuilding of the Altar

Great phrase here: “the fear of the Lord was on the people”  because there
was no temple erected yet, the Altar was out in the open, but they could
offer the sacrifices on it none the less. and worship God.

The worship included singing responsively: One group would say one thing;
then the other group would follow

For He is Good

for His steadfast love endures forever toward Israel


but of course the older of the crowd who saw the first Temple,
wept from the obvious destruction of the Temple:

so the rejoicing was mixed with the weeping and wailing of the elders




SONG of SOLOMON 5-8 The Wedding and After

Chapter 5

This is a picture of surprise and rejection

one could see why previous scholars and preachers see allegory in here of God
turning his back on a disobedient people: but no accounting of a disobedient bride

Then she adores him again, and lets him know it


Chapter 6

Witnesses cry: Where has your beloved gone?

then a picture of Bride and Groom adoring each other in the garden


Chapter 7

How beautiful you are from the ground up: literally parts of the body from feet to eyes

She gives him her love


Chapter 8

Final comments to friends who say, we have a little girl in our midst, what shall we do with her