12 These are the priests and Levites who returned 1 with Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel and Jeshua: Seraiah, Jeremiah, Ezra, 2 Amariah, Malluch, Hattush, 3 Shecaniah, Rehum, Meremoth, 4 Iddo, Ginnethon, 2 Abijah, 5 Mijamin, Moadiah, Bilgah, 6 Shemaiah, Joiarib, Jedaiah, 7 Sallu, Amok, Hilkiah, and Jedaiah. These were the leaders 3 of the priests and their colleagues 4 in the days of Jeshua.
8 And the Levites: Jeshua, Binnui, Kadmiel, Sherebiah, Judah, and Mattaniah, who together with his colleagues 5 was in charge of the songs of thanksgiving. 9 Bakbukiah and Unni, 6 their colleagues, stood opposite them in the services.
10 Jeshua was the father of 7 Joiakim, Joiakim was the father of Eliashib, Eliashib was the father of Joiada, 11 Joiada was the father of Jonathan, and Jonathan was the father of Jaddua.
12 In the days of Joiakim, these were the priests who were leaders of the families: of Seraiah, Meraiah; of Jeremiah, Hananiah; 13 of Ezra, Meshullam; of Amariah, Jehohanan; 14 of Malluch, 8 Jonathan; of Shecaniah, 9 Joseph; 15 of Harim, Adna; of Meremoth, 10 Helkai; 16 of Iddo, 11 Zechariah; of Ginnethon, Meshullam; 17 of Abijah, Zicri; of Miniamin and 12 of Moadiah, Piltai; 18 of Bilgah, Shammua; of Shemaiah, Jehonathan; 19 of Joiarib, Mattenai; of Jedaiah, Uzzi; 20 of Sallu, 13 Kallai; of Amok, Eber; 21 of Hilkiah, Hashabiah; of Jedaiah, Nethanel.
22 As for the Levites, 14 in the days of Eliashib, Joiada, Johanan and Jaddua the heads of families were recorded, as were the priests during the reign of Darius the Persian. 23 The descendants of Levi were recorded in the Book of the Chronicles 15 as heads of families up to the days of Johanan son of Eliashib. 24 And the leaders of the Levites were Hashabiah, Sherebiah, Jeshua son of Kadmiel, and their colleagues, who stood opposite them to offer praise and thanks, one contingent corresponding to the other, as specified by 16 David the man of God.
25 Mattaniah, Bakbukiah, Obadiah, Meshullam, Talmon, and Akkub were gatekeepers who were guarding the storerooms at the gates. 26 These all served in the days of Joiakim son of Jeshua, the son of Jozadak, and in the days of Nehemiah the governor and of Ezra the priestly scribe. 17
27 At the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem, 18 they sought out the Levites from all the places they lived 19 to bring them to Jerusalem to celebrate the dedication joyfully with songs of thanksgiving and songs accompanied by cymbals, harps, and lyres. 28 The singers 20 were also assembled from the district around Jerusalem and from the settlements of the Netophathites 29 and from Beth Gilgal and from the fields of Geba and Azmaveth, for the singers had built settlements for themselves around Jerusalem. 30 When the priests and Levites had purified themselves, they purified the people, the gates, and the wall.
31 I brought the leaders of Judah up on top of the wall, and I appointed two large choirs to give thanks. One was to proceed 21 on the top of the wall southward toward the Dung Gate. 32 Going after them were Hoshaiah, half the leaders of Judah, 33 Azariah, Ezra, Meshullam, 34 Judah, Benjamin, Shemaiah, Jeremiah, 35 some of the priests 22 with trumpets, Zechariah son of Jonathan, the son of Shemaiah, the son of Mattaniah, the son of Micaiah, the son of Zaccur, the son of Asaph, 36 and his colleagues – Shemaiah, Azarel, Milalai, Gilalai, Maai, Nethanel, Judah, and Hanani – with musical instruments of 23 David the man of God. (Ezra the scribe led them.) 24 37 They went over the Fountain Gate and continued directly up the steps of the City of David on the ascent to the wall. They passed the house of David and continued on to the Water Gate toward the east.
38 The second choir was proceeding 25 in the opposite direction. I followed them, along with half the people, on top of the wall, past the Tower of the Ovens to the Broad Wall, 39 over the Ephraim Gate, the Jeshanah Gate, 26 the Fish Gate, the Tower of Hananel, and the Tower of the Hundred, to the Sheep Gate. They stopped 27 at the Gate of the Guard.
40 Then the two choirs that gave thanks took their stations 28 in the temple of God. I did also, along with half the officials with me, 41 and the priests – Eliakim, Maaseiah, Miniamin, Micaiah, Elioenai, Zechariah, and Hananiah, with their trumpets – 42 and also Maaseiah, Shemaiah, Eleazar, Uzzi, Jehohanan, Malkijah, Elam, and Ezer. The choirs sang loudly 29 under the direction of Jezrahiah. 43 And on that day they offered great sacrifices and rejoiced, for God had given them great joy. The women and children also rejoiced. The rejoicing in Jerusalem could be heard from far away.
44 On that day men were appointed over the storerooms for the contributions, first fruits, and tithes, to gather into them from 30 the fields of the cities the portions prescribed by the law for the priests and the Levites, for the people of Judah 31 took delight in the priests and Levites who were ministering. 32 45 They performed the service of their God and the service of purification, along with the singers and gatekeepers, according to the commandment of David and 33 his son Solomon. 46 For long ago, in the days of David and Asaph, there had been directors 34 for the singers and for the songs of praise and thanks to God. 47 So in the days of Zerubbabel and in the days of Nehemiah, all Israel was contributing the portions for the singers and gatekeepers, according to the daily need. 35 They also set aside 36 the portion for the Levites, and the Levites set aside the portion for the descendants of Aaron.
13 On that day the book of Moses was read aloud in the hearing 1 of the people. They found 2 written in it that no Ammonite or Moabite may ever enter the assembly of God, 2 for they had not met the Israelites with food 3 and water, but instead had hired Balaam to curse them. (Our God, however, turned the curse into blessing.) 3 When they heard the law, they removed from Israel all who were of mixed ancestry.
4 But prior to this time, Eliashib the priest, a relative of Tobiah, had been appointed over the storerooms 4 of the temple of our God. 5 He made for himself a large storeroom where previously they had been keeping 5 the grain offering, the incense, and the vessels, along with the tithes of the grain, the new wine, and the olive oil as commanded for the Levites, the singers, the gate keepers, and the offering for the priests.
6 During all this time I was not in Jerusalem, 6 for in the thirty-second year of King Artaxerxes of Babylon, I had gone back to the king. After some time 7 I had requested leave of the king, 7 and I returned to Jerusalem. Then I discovered the evil that Eliashib had done for Tobiah by supplying him with a storeroom in the courts of the temple of God. 8 I was very upset, and I threw all of Tobiah’s household possessions out of the storeroom. 9 Then I gave instructions that the storerooms should be purified, and I brought back the equipment 8 of the temple of God, along with the grain offering and the incense.
10 I also discovered that the grain offerings for the Levites had not been provided, and that as a result the Levites and the singers who performed this work had all gone off to their fields. 11 So I registered a complaint with the leaders, asking “Why is the temple of God neglected?” Then I gathered them and reassigned them to their positions. 9
12 Then all of Judah brought the tithe of the grain, the new wine, and the olive oil to the storerooms. 13 I gave instructions 10 that Shelemiah the priest, Zadok the scribe, and a certain Levite named Pedaiah be put in charge of 11 the storerooms, and that Hanan son of Zaccur, the son of Mattaniah, be their assistant, 12 for they were regarded as trustworthy. It was then their responsibility to oversee the distribution to their colleagues. 13
14 Please remember me for this, O my God, and do not wipe out the kindness that I have done for the temple of my God and for its services!
15 In those days I saw people in Judah treading winepresses on the Sabbath, bringing in heaps of grain and loading them onto donkeys, along with wine, grapes, figs, and all kinds of loads, and bringing them to Jerusalem on the Sabbath day. So I warned them on the day that they sold these provisions. 16 The people from Tyre 14 who lived there were bringing fish and all kinds of merchandise and were selling it on the Sabbath to the people of Judah – and in Jerusalem, of all places! 15 17 So I registered a complaint with the nobles of Judah, saying to them, “What is this evil thing that you are doing, profaning the Sabbath day? 18 Isn’t this the way your ancestors 16 acted, causing our God to bring on them and on this city all this misfortune? And now you are causing even more wrath on Israel, profaning the Sabbath like this!”
19 When the evening shadows 17 began to fall on the gates of Jerusalem before the Sabbath, I ordered 18 the doors to be closed. I further directed that they were not to be opened until after the Sabbath. I positioned 19 some of my young men at the gates so that no load could enter on the Sabbath day. 20 The traders and sellers of all kinds of merchandise spent the night outside Jerusalem once or twice. 21 But I warned them and said, 20 “Why do you spend the night by the wall? If you repeat this, I will forcibly remove you!” 21 From that time on they did not show up on the Sabbath. 22 22 Then I directed the Levites to purify themselves and come and guard the gates in order to keep the Sabbath day holy.
For this please remember me, O my God, and have pity on me in keeping with your great love.
23 Also in those days I saw the men of Judah who had married women from Ashdod, Ammon, and Moab. 24 Half of their children spoke the language of Ashdod (or the language of one of the other peoples mentioned 23 ) and were unable to speak the language of Judah. 25 So I entered a complaint with them. I called down a curse on them, and I struck some of the men and pulled out their hair. I had them swear by God saying, “You will not marry off 24 your daughters to their sons, and you will not take any of their daughters as wives for your sons or for yourselves! 26 Was it not because of things like these that King Solomon of Israel sinned? Among the many nations there was no king like him. He was loved by his God, and God made 25 him king over all Israel. But the foreign wives made even him sin! 27 Should we then in your case hear that you do all this great evil, thereby being unfaithful to our God by marrying 26 foreign wives?”
28 Now one of the sons of Joiada son of Eliashib the high priest was a son-in-law of Sanballat the Horonite. So I banished him from my sight.
29 Please remember them, O my God, because they have defiled the priesthood, the covenant of the priesthood, 27 and the Levites.
30 So I purified them of everything foreign, and I assigned specific 28 duties to the priests and the Levites. 31 I also provided for 29 the wood offering at the appointed times and also for the first fruits.
Please remember me for good, O my God.
1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, 1 which God gave him to show his servants 2 what must happen very soon. 3 He made it clear 4 by sending his angel to his servant 5 John, 2 who then 6 testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about 7 Jesus Christ. 3 Blessed is the one who reads the words of this 8 prophecy aloud, 9 and blessed are 10 those who hear and obey 11 the things written in it, because the time is near! 12
4 From John, 13 to the seven churches that are in the province of Asia: 14 Grace and peace to you 15 from “he who is,” 16 and who was, and who is still to come, 17 and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ – the faithful 18 witness, 19 the firstborn from among the dead, the ruler over the kings of the earth. To the one who loves us and has set us free 20 from our sins at the cost of 21 his own blood 6 and has appointed 22 us as a kingdom, 23 as priests 24 serving his God and Father – to him be the glory and the power for ever and ever! 25 Amen.
7 (Look! He is returning with the clouds, 26
and every eye will see him,
even 27 those who pierced him, 28
and all the tribes 29 on the earth will mourn because 30 of him.
This will certainly come to pass! 31 Amen.) 32
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” 33 says the Lord God – the one who is, and who was, and who is still to come – the All-Powerful! 34
9 I, John, your brother and the one who shares 35 with you in the persecution, kingdom, and endurance that 36 are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony about Jesus. 37 10 I was in the Spirit 38 on the Lord’s Day 39 when 40 I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet, 11 saying: “Write in a book what you see and send it to the seven churches – to Ephesus, 41 Smyrna, 42 Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”
12 I 43 turned to see whose voice was speaking to me, 44 and when I did so, 45 I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and in the midst of the lampstands was one like a son of man. 46 He was dressed in a robe extending down to his feet and he wore a wide golden belt 47 around his chest. 14 His 48 head and hair were as white as wool, even as white as snow, 49 and his eyes were like a fiery 50 flame. 15 His feet were like polished bronze 51 refined 52 in a furnace, and his voice was like the roar 53 of many waters. 16 He held 54 seven stars in his right hand, and a sharp double-edged sword extended out of his mouth. His 55 face shone like the sun shining at full strength. 17 When 56 I saw him I fell down at his feet as though I were dead, but 57 he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid! I am the first and the last, 18 and the one who lives! I 58 was dead, but look, now I am alive – forever and ever – and I hold the keys of death and of Hades! 59 19 Therefore write what you saw, what is, and what will be after these things. 60 20 The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand and the seven golden lampstands is this: 61 The seven stars are the angels 62 of the seven churches and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.