Builders of the Walls
Then Eliashib the high priest rose up with his brothers the priests and built [a]the Sheep Gate. They consecrated it and set up its doors; and they consecrated the wall [westward] to the Tower of the Hundred, as far as the Tower of Hananel. [b]Next to Eliashib the men of Jericho built, and next to them Zaccur the son of Imri built.
Now the sons of Hassenaah built the Fish Gate; they laid its beams and set up its doors with its bolts and its bars. Next to them Meremoth the son of Uriah, the son of Hakkoz, made repairs. Next to him Meshullam the son of Berechiah, the son of Meshezabel, made repairs. And next to him Zadok the son of Baana also made repairs. Next to him the men of Tekoa made repairs, but their nobles did not [c]support the work of their overseers.
Joiada the son of Paseah and Meshullam the son of Besodeiah repaired [d]the Old Gate. They laid its beams and set up its doors with its bolts and its bars. Next to them Melatiah the Gibeonite and Jadon the Meronothite, the men of Gibeon and of Mizpah, made repairs for the official seat (Jerusalem residence) of the governor [of the province] beyond the [Euphrates] River. Next to them Uzziel the son of Harhaiah, one of the goldsmiths, made repairs. Next to him Hananiah, one of the perfumers, made repairs, and they restored Jerusalem as far as [e]the Broad Wall. Next to them Rephaiah the son of Hur, official of half the district of Jerusalem, made repairs. Next to them Jedaiah the son of Harumaph made repairs opposite his own house. And next to him Hattush the son of Hashabneiah made repairs. Malchijah the son of Harim and Hasshub the son of Pahath-moab repaired another section and the Tower of the Furnaces. Next to him Shallum the son of Hallohesh, the official of half the district of Jerusalem, made repairs, he and his daughters.
Hanun and the inhabitants of Zanoah repaired the Valley Gate. They built it and set up its doors with its bolts and its bars, and repaired a thousand cubits (1,500 ft.) of the wall as far as the Refuse Gate.
Malchijah the son of Rechab, the official of the district of Beth-haccherem repaired the Refuse Gate. He rebuilt it and set its doors with its bolts and its bars.
Shallum the son of Col-hozeh, official of the district of Mizpah repaired the [f]Fountain Gate. He rebuilt it and covered it [with a roof], and set up its doors with its bolts and its bars, and [he rebuilt] the wall of the Pool of Shelah (Siloam) by the King’s Garden as far as the stairs that descend [the eastern slope] from [the section of Jerusalem known as] the City of David. After him [g]Nehemiah the son of Azbuk, official of half the district of Beth-zur, repaired [the wall] as far as [a point] in front of the tombs of David, and as far as the artificial pool and the house of the guards. After him the Levites carried out repairs under Rehum the son of Bani. Next to him Hashabiah, official of half the district of Keilah, carried out repairs for his district. After him their brothers carried out repairs under Bavvai the son of Henadad, official of [the other] half of the district of Keilah. Next to him Ezer the son of Jeshua, the official of Mizpah, repaired another section [northward] in front of the ascent to the armory at the Angle [in the wall]. After him Baruch son of Zabbai zealously repaired another section [toward the hill], from the Angle [in the wall] to the door of the house of Eliashib the high priest. After him Meremoth the son of Uriah, the son of Hakkoz, repaired another [eastern] section, from the door of Eliashib’s house as far as the end of his house. After him the priests, the men of the [lower Jordan] valley, carried out repairs. After them Benjamin and Hasshub made repairs in front of their house. After them Azariah the son of Maaseiah, the son of Ananiah, carried out repairs beside his own house. After him Binnui the son of Henadad repaired another section [of the wall], from the house of Azariah to the Angle [in the wall] and to the corner. Palal the son of Uzai made repairs in front of the Angle [in the wall] and the tower projecting from the upper house (palace) of the king, which is by the courtyard of the guard. After him Pedaiah the son of Parosh made repairs. The temple servants were living in Ophel [the hill south of the temple], and they made repairs as far as the front of the Water Gate on the east and the projecting tower. After them the Tekoites repaired another section in front of the great projecting tower and as far as the wall of Ophel.
Above the Horse Gate the priests made repairs, each one in front of his own house. After them Zadok the son of Immer carried out repairs in front of his house. After him Shemaiah the son of Shecaniah, keeper of the East Gate, repaired the wall. After him Hananiah the son of Shelemiah, and Hanun the sixth son of Zalaph, repaired another section. After him Meshullam the son of Berechiah carried out repairs in front of his own quarters. After him Malchijah, one of the goldsmiths, carried out repairs as far as the house of the temple servants and of the merchants, in front of the [h]Inspection Gate and as far as the upper room of the corner. Between the upper room of the corner and [i]the Sheep Gate the goldsmiths and merchants carried out repairs.
- Nehemiah 3:1 Located at northeastern corner of the city.
- Nehemiah 3:2 Lit On his hand.
- Nehemiah 3:5 Lit bring their necks to.
- Nehemiah 3:6 Located at the northwestern corner of the city.
- Nehemiah 3:8 I.e. the western wall.
- Nehemiah 3:15 Located on the lower southeast side of the city.
- Nehemiah 3:16 This is not the Nehemiah who wrote this book.
- Nehemiah 3:31 Or Muster Gate.
- Nehemiah 3:32 Located at the upper northeastern corner of the city.
Work Is Ridiculed
[a]But when Sanballat heard that we were rebuilding the wall, he became furious, completely enraged, and he ridiculed the Jews. He spoke before his brothers and the army of Samaria, “What are these feeble Jews doing? Can they restore it for themselves? Can they offer sacrifices? Can they finish in a day? Can they revive the stones from the heaps of dust and rubbish, even the ones that have been burned?” Now Tobiah the Ammonite was beside him, and he said, “Even what they are building—if a fox should get up on it, he would break down their stone wall.”
[And Nehemiah prayed] Hear, O our God, how we are despised! Return their taunts on their own heads. Give them up as prey in a land of captivity. Do not forgive their wrongdoing and do not let their sin be wiped out before You, for they have offended the builders [and provoked You].
So we built the wall and the entire wall was joined together to half its height, for the people had a heart to work.
[b]But when Sanballat, Tobiah, the Arabs, the Ammonites, and the Ashdodites heard that the repair of the walls of Jerusalem went on, and that the breaches were being closed, they were very angry. They all conspired together to come and to fight against Jerusalem, and to cause a disturbance in it.
But we prayed to our God, and because of them we set up a guard against them day and night.
Then [the leaders of] Judah said,
“The strength of the burden bearers is failing,
And there is much rubble;
We ourselves are unable
To rebuild the wall.”
Our enemies said, “They will not know or see us until we are among them, kill them and put a stop to the work.” When the Jews who lived near them came, they said to us ten times (repeatedly), “From every place you turn, they will come up against us.” So I stationed armed men behind the wall in the lowest places, at the open positions [where it was least protected]; and I stationed the people in families with their swords, spears, and bows. When I saw their fear, I stood and said to the nobles and officials and the rest of the people: “Do not be afraid of them; [confidently] remember the Lord who is great and awesome, and [with courage from Him] fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and for your homes.”
Now when our enemies heard that we knew about their plot against us, and that God had frustrated their plan, we all returned to the wall, each one to his work. From that day on, half of my servants carried on the work while the other half held the spears, shields, bows, and breastplates; and the captains were behind the whole house of Judah. Those who were rebuilding the wall and those who carried burdens loaded themselves so that everyone worked with one hand and held a weapon with the other. Every builder had his sword secured at his side as he built. And the one who sounded the trumpet [to summon the troops] stood at my side. I said to the nobles, the officials and the rest of the people, “The work is great and extensive, and we are separated on the wall, far from one another. Wherever you hear the sound of the trumpet, gather to us there. Our God will fight for us.”
So we carried on with the work with half of them holding spears from dawn until the stars came out. At that time I also said to the people, “Let each man with his servant spend the night inside Jerusalem so that they may serve as a guard for us at night and a laborer during the day.” So neither I, my brothers (relatives), my servants, nor the men of the guard who followed me, none of us took off our clothes; each took his weapon [even] to the water.