The Words of Nehemiah

Chapter 12

The priests and the Levites who came up with Zerubbabel, 1-9. The succession of high priests, 10-21. Certain chief Levites, 22-26. The solemnity of the dedication of the walls, 27-43. The offices of priests and Levites appointed in the temple, 44-47.

1 Now these are the priests and the Levites who went up with Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel and Jeshua: Seraiah, Jeremiah, Ezra, 2 Amariah, Malluch, Hattush, 3 Shechaniah, Rehum, Meremoth, 4 Iddo, Ginnetho, Abijah, 5 Miamin, Maadiah, Bilgah, 6 Shemaiah, Joiarib, Jedaiah, 7 Sallu, Amok, Hilkiah, and Jedaiah. These were the chief of the priests and of their brothers in the days of Jeshua.

8 Moreover, the Levites: Jeshua, Binnui, Kadmiel, Sherebiah, Judah, and Mattaniah who was over the thanksgiving—he and his brothers. 9 Also Bakbukiah and Unni, their brothers, were over against them in the watches. 10 And Jeshua begot Joiakim, Joiakim also begot Eliashib, Eliashib begot Joiada, 11 Joiada begot Jonathan, and Jonathan begot Jaddua.

12 And in the days of Joiakim the priests, the chief of the fathers, were, of Seraiah, Meraiah; of Jeremiah, Hananiah; 13 Of Ezra, Meshullam; of Amariah, Jehohanan; 14 Of Melicu, Jonathan; of Shebaniah, Joseph; 15 Of Harim, Adna; of Meraioth, Helkai; 16 Of Iddo, Zechariah; of Ginnethon, Meshullam; 17 Of Abijah, Zichri; of Miniamin, of Moadiah, Piltai; 18 Of Bilgah, Shammua; of Shemaiah, Jehonathan; 19 Of Joiarib, Mattenai; of Jedaiah, Uzzi; 20 Of Sallai, Kallai; of Amok, Eber; 21 Of Hilkiah, Hashabiah; of Jedaiah, Nethaneel.

22 The Levites in the days of Eliashib, Joiada, Johanan, and Jaddua were recorded chief of the fathers and also the priests, to the reign of Darius the Persian. 23 The sons of Levi, the chief of the fathers, were written in the book of the chronicles, even until the days of Johanan the son of Eliashib. 24 And the chief of the Levites were Hashabiah, Sherebiah, and Jeshua the son of Kadmiel, with their brothers over against them, to praise and to give thanks according to the commandment of David the man of God, ward over against ward. 25 Mattaniah, Bakbukiah, Obadiah, Meshullam, Talmon, and Akkub were gatekeepers keeping the ward at the thresholds of the gates. 26 These were in the days of Joiakim the son of Jeshua, the son of Jozadak, and in the days of Nehemiah the governor, and of Ezra the priest and the scribe.

27 And at the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem they sought the Levites out of all their places, to bring them to Jerusalem, to keep the dedication with gladness, with thanksgivings, with singing, with cymbals, psalteries, and with harps. 28 And the sons of the singers assembled, both out of the plain country around Jerusalem and from the villages of Netophathi, 29 Also from the house of Gilgal and from the fields of Geba and Azmaveth, for the singers had built themselves villages around Jerusalem. 30 And the priests and the Levites purified themselves, purified the people, the gates, and the wall.

31 Then I brought up the princes of Judah upon the wall and appointed two great companies of those who gave thanks, of which one went on the right hand upon the wall toward the dung-gate. 32 And after them went Hoshaiah and half of the princes of Judah, 33 And Azariah, Ezra, Meshullam, 34 Judah, Benjamin, Shemaiah, Jeremiah, 35 And some of the priests' sons with trumpets, namely, Zechariah the son of Jonathan, the son of Shemaiah, the son of Mattaniah, the son of Michaiah, the son of Zaccur, the son of Asaph; 36 And his brothers, Shemaiah, Azarael, Milalai, Gilalai, Maai, Nethaneel, Judah, and Hanani, with the musical instruments of David the man of God, and Ezra the scribe before them. 37 And at the fountain-gate, which was over against them, they went up by the stairs of the city of David at the ascent of the wall above the house of David, even to the water-gate eastward.

38 And the other company of those who gave thanks went over against them, and I after them, and the half of the people upon the wall, from beyond the tower of the furnaces even to the broad wall, 39 And from above the gate of Ephraim, above the old gate, above the fish-gate, the tower of Hananeel, and the tower of Meah, even to the sheep-gate. And they stood still in the prison-gate. 40 So the two companies of those who gave thanks stood in the house of God, and I and the half of the rulers with me; 41 And the priests, Eliakim, Maaseiah, Miniamin, Michaiah, Elioenai, Zechariah, and Hananiah, with trumpets; 42 And Maaseiah, Shemaiah, Eleazar, Uzzi, Jehohanan, Malchijah, Elam, and Ezer. And the singers sang loud, with Jezrahiah their overseer. 43 Also that day, they offered great sacrifices and rejoiced, for God had made them rejoice with great joy. The wives and the children also rejoiced. Thus the joy of Jerusalem was heard even afar off.

44 And at that time some were appointed over the chambers for the treasures, for the offerings, for the first-fruits, and for the tithes, to gather into them out of the fields of the cities the portions of the law for the priests and Levites, for Judah rejoiced for the priests and for the Levites who waited. 45 And both the singers and the gatekeepers kept the ward of their God and the ward of the purification, according to the commandment of David and of Solomon his son. 46 For in the days of David and Asaph of old, there were chief of the singers, and songs of praise and thanksgiving to God. 47 And all Israel in the days of Zerubbabel and in the days of Nehemiah, gave the portions of the singers and the gatekeepers, every day his portion. And they sanctified holy things to the Levites, and the Levites sanctified them to the children of Aaron.


Matthew Henry Commentary - Nehemiah, Chapter 12[➚]