3 Then Eliashib the high priest and his priestly colleagues 1 arose and built the Sheep Gate. They dedicated 2 it and erected its doors, working as far as the Tower of the Hundred 3 and 4 the Tower of Hananel. 2 The men of Jericho 5 built adjacent to it, and Zaccur son of Imri built adjacent to them. 6
3 The sons of Hassenaah rebuilt the Fish Gate. They laid its beams and positioned its doors, its bolts, and its bars. 4 Meremoth son of Uriah, the son of Hakoz, worked on the section adjacent to them. Meshullam son of Berechiah the son of Meshezabel worked on the section next to them. And Zadok son of Baana worked on the section adjacent to them. 5 The men of Tekoa worked on the section adjacent to them, but their town leaders 7 would not assist 8 with the work of their master. 9
6 Joiada son of Paseah and Meshullam son of Besodeiah worked on the Jeshanah Gate. 10 They laid its beams and positioned its doors, its bolts, and its bars. 7 Adjacent to them worked Melatiah the Gibeonite and Jadon the Meronothite, who were men of Gibeon and Mizpah. These towns were under the jurisdiction 11 of the governor of Trans-Euphrates. 8 Uzziel son of Harhaiah, a member of the goldsmiths’ guild, worked on the section adjacent to him. Hananiah, a member of the perfumers’ guild, worked on the section adjacent to him. They plastered 12 the city wall of Jerusalem 13 as far as the Broad Wall. 9 Rephaiah son of Hur, head of a half-district of Jerusalem, worked on the section adjacent to them. 10 Jedaiah son of Harumaph worked on the section adjacent to them opposite 14 his house, and Hattush son of Hashabneiah worked on the section adjacent to him. 11 Malkijah son of Harim and Hasshub son of Pahath-Moab worked on another section and the Tower of the Fire Pots. 12 Shallum son of Hallohesh, head of a half-district of Jerusalem, worked on the section adjacent to him, assisted by his daughters. 15
13 Hanun and the residents of Zanoah worked on the Valley Gate. They rebuilt it and positioned its doors, its bolts, and its bars, in addition to working on fifteen hundred feet 16 of the wall as far as the Dung Gate.
14 Malkijah son of Recab, head of the district of Beth Hakkerem, worked on the Dung Gate. He rebuilt it and positioned its doors, its bolts, and its bars.
15 Shallun son of Col-Hozeh, head of the district of Mizpah, worked on the Fountain Gate. He rebuilt it, put on its roof, and positioned its doors, its bolts, and its bars. In addition, he rebuilt the wall of the Pool of Siloam, 17 by the royal garden, as far as the steps that go down from the City of David. 16 Nehemiah son of Azbuk, head of a half-district of Beth Zur, worked after him as far as the tombs of David and the artificial pool and the House of the Warriors.
17 After him the Levites worked – Rehum son of Bani and 18 after him Hashabiah, head of half the district of Keilah, for his district. 18 After him their relatives 19 worked – Binnui 20 son of Henadad, head of a half-district of Keilah. 19 Adjacent to him Ezer son of Jeshua, head of Mizpah, worked on another section, opposite the ascent to the armory at the buttress. 20 After him Baruch son of Zabbai worked on another section, from the buttress to the door of the house of Eliashib the high priest. 21 After him Meremoth son of Uriah, the son of Hakkoz, worked on another section from the door of Eliashib’s house to the end of it. 21
22 After him the priests worked, men of the nearby district. 23 After them Benjamin and Hasshub worked opposite their house. After them Azariah son of Maaseiah, the son of Ananiah, worked near his house. 24 After him Binnui son of Henadad worked on another section, from the house of Azariah to the buttress and the corner. 25 After him Palal son of Uzai worked 22 opposite the buttress and the tower that protrudes from the upper palace 23 of the court of the guard. After him Pedaiah son of Parosh 26 and the temple servants who were living on Ophel worked 24 up to the area opposite the Water Gate toward the east and the protruding tower. 27 After them the men of Tekoa worked on another section, from opposite the great protruding tower to the wall of Ophel.
28 Above the Horse Gate the priests worked, each in front of his house. 29 After them Zadok son of Immer worked opposite his house, and after him Shemaiah son of Shecaniah, guard at the East Gate, worked. 30 After him 25 Hananiah son of Shelemiah, and Hanun, the sixth son of Zalaph, worked on another section. After them Meshullam son of Berechiah worked opposite his quarters. 31 After him Malkijah, one of the goldsmiths, worked as far as the house of the temple servants and the traders, opposite the Inspection Gate, 26 and up to the room above the corner. 32 And between the room above the corner and the Sheep Gate the goldsmiths and traders worked.
4 1 Now when Sanballat heard that we were rebuilding the wall he became angry and was quite upset. He derided the Jews, 2 and in the presence of his colleagues 2 and the army of Samaria 3 he said, “What are these feeble Jews doing? Will they be left to themselves? 4 Will they again offer sacrifice? Will they finish this in a day? Can they bring these burnt stones to life again from piles of dust?”
3 Then Tobiah the Ammonite, who was close by, said, “If even a fox were to climb up on what they are building, it would break down their wall of stones!”
4 Hear, O our God, for we are despised! Return their reproach on their own head! Reduce them to plunder in a land of exile! 5 Do not cover their iniquity, and do not wipe out their sin from before them. For they have bitterly offended 5 the builders! 6
6 So we rebuilt the wall, and the entire wall was joined together up to half its height. 7 The people were enthusiastic in their work. 8
7 9 When Sanballat, Tobiah, the Arabs, the Ammonites, and the people of Ashdod heard that the restoration of the walls of Jerusalem 10 had moved ahead and that the breaches had begun to be closed, they were very angry. 8 All of them conspired together to move with armed forces 11 against Jerusalem and to create a disturbance in it. 9 So we prayed to our God and stationed a guard to protect against them 12 both day and night. 10 Then those in Judah said, “The strength of the laborers 13 has failed! The debris is so great that we are unable to rebuild the wall.”
11 Our adversaries also boasted, 14 “Before they are aware or anticipate 15 anything, we will come in among them and kill them, and we will bring this work to a halt!”
12 So it happened that the Jews who were living near them came and warned us repeatedly 16 about all the schemes 17 they were plotting 18 against us.
13 So I stationed people at the lower places behind the wall in the exposed places. 19 I stationed the people by families, with their swords, spears, and bows. 14 When I had made an inspection, 20 I stood up and said to the nobles, the officials, and the rest of the people, “Don’t be afraid of them. Remember the great and awesome Lord, 21 and fight on behalf of your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your families!” 22
15 It so happened that when our adversaries heard that we were aware of these matters, 23 God frustrated their intentions. Then all of us returned to the wall, each to his own work. 16 From that day forward, half of my men were doing the work and half of them were taking up spears, 24 shields, bows, and body armor. Now the officers were behind all the people 25 of Judah 17 who were rebuilding the wall. 26 Those who were carrying loads did so 27 by keeping one hand on the work and the other on their weapon. 18 The builders to a man had their swords strapped to their sides while they were building. But the trumpeter 28 remained with me.
19 I said to the nobles, the officials, and the rest of the people, “The work is demanding 29 and extensive, and we are spread out on the wall, far removed from one another. 20 Wherever you hear the sound of the trumpet, gather there with us. Our God will fight for us!”
21 So we worked on, 30 with half 31 holding spears, from dawn till dusk. 32 22 At that time I instructed 33 the people, “Let every man and his coworker spend the night in Jerusalem and let them be guards for us by night and workers by day. 23 We did not change clothes 34 – not I, nor my relatives, nor my workers, nor the watchmen who were with me. Each had his weapon, even when getting a drink of water. 35
5 Then there was a great outcry from the people and their wives against their fellow Jews. 1 2 There were those who said, “With our sons and daughters, we are many. We must obtain 2 grain in order to eat and stay alive.” 3 There were others who said, “We are putting up our fields, our vineyards, and our houses as collateral in order to obtain grain during the famine.” 4 Then there were those who said, “We have borrowed money to pay our taxes to the king 3 on our fields and our vineyards. 5 And now, though we share the same flesh and blood as our fellow countrymen, 4 and our children are just like their children, 5 still we have found it necessary to subject our sons and daughters to slavery. 6 Some of our daughters have been subjected to slavery, while we are powerless to help, 7 since our fields and vineyards now belong to other people.” 8
6 I was very angry when I heard their outcry and these complaints. 9 7 I considered these things carefully 10 and then registered a complaint with the wealthy 11 and the officials. I said to them, “Each one of you is seizing the collateral 12 from your own countrymen!” 13 Because of them I called for 14 a great public assembly. 8 I said to them, “To the extent possible we have bought back our fellow Jews 15 who had been sold to the Gentiles. But now you yourselves want to sell your own countrymen, 16 so that we can then buy them back!” They were utterly silent, and could find nothing to say.
9 Then I 17 said, “The thing that you are doing is wrong! 18 Should you not conduct yourselves 19 in the fear of our God in order to avoid the reproach of the Gentiles who are our enemies? 10 Even I and my relatives 20 and my associates 21 are lending them money and grain. But let us abandon this practice of seizing collateral! 22 11 This very day return to them their fields, their vineyards, their olive trees, and their houses, along with the interest 23 that you are exacting from them on the money, the grain, the new wine, and the olive oil.”
12 They replied, “We will return these things, 24 and we will no longer demand anything from them. We will do just as you say.” Then I called the priests and made the wealthy and the officials 25 swear to do what had been promised. 26 13 I also shook out my garment, 27 and I said, “In this way may God shake out from his house and his property every person who does not carry out 28 this matter. In this way may he be shaken out and emptied!” All the assembly replied, “So be it!” and they praised the LORD. Then the people did as they had promised. 29
14 From the day that I was appointed 30 governor 31 in the land of Judah, that is, from the twentieth year until the thirty-second year of King Artaxerxes – twelve years in all – neither I nor my relatives 32 ate the food allotted to the governor. 33 15 But the former governors who preceded me had burdened the people and had taken food and wine from them, in addition to 34 forty shekels of silver. Their associates were also domineering over the people. But I did not behave in this way, due to my fear of God. 16 I gave myself to the work on this wall, without even purchasing 35 a field. All my associates were gathered there for the work.
17 There were 150 Jews and officials who dined with me routinely, 36 in addition to those who came to us from the nations 37 all around us. 18 Every day one ox, six select sheep, and some birds were prepared for me, and every ten days all kinds of wine in abundance. Despite all this I did not require the food allotted to the governor, for the work was demanding on this people.
19 Please remember me for good, O my God, for all that I have done for this people.