Nehemiah 7:73 Commentary - The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges
73. some] R.V. some. The Heb. gives the partitive idea. (LXX. οἱ ἀπὸ τοῦ λαοῦ . Vulg. ‘reliquum vulgus.’)
Nethinims ] R.V. Nethinim.
This verse begins a new section in the work. The style alters. The use of the first pers. sing. is resumed in Neh 12:31. The Compiler has recourse to other material for this narrative. The thread of Nehemiah’s Memoir, which was broken off at Neh 7:5, is therefore not resumed.
and when the seventh month came ] R.V. And when the seventh month was come. The R.V. gives the right division of the verse. The second clause introduces a new section. Very similar words occur in Ezr 3:1 after the register of names. The close of the ‘register’ perhaps contained suitable words with which to resume the narrative in both passages. But possibly the Compiler consciously repeats himself and borrows from Ezr 3:1, ‘the seventh month.’ The mention of this date raises the question of the chronology of the following episodes.
The year is not stated. It is not therefore possible to say with certainty that the events described in chap. 8. followed immediately upon the completion of the wall. But, although not stated, this is what is clearly suggested by the compiler of the work. The mention of the 25th of the 6th month (Neh 6:15) is followed by the narrative of the 1st of the 7th month (Neh 7:73; Neh 8:2). As no other year is mentioned, presumably the events are those which occurred in the same year.
The objection which has been raised against this simple view is chiefly based upon the difficulty caused by the strangely sudden reappearance of Ezra. The fact that in 1Es 9:37 ff. the events here described follow immediately upon the expulsion of ‘the strange women’ (Ezra 9) has been by some scholars understood to supply the right order of time. The public reading of the law and the sacred covenant would then have to be placed in the year 457, and ‘the seventh month’ in the second year after Ezra’s arrival. An apparent confirmation of this view is given by Josephus. But the chronology of Josephus in this period is very untrustworthy. Undoubtedly following 1 Esdras, which does not mention Nehemiah, he places Ezra’s activity in the generation before that of Nehemiah, and Ezra’s death before Nehemiah’s arrival at Jerusalem. His treatment of their lives seems to be based on the supposition that they were not contemporaries (see Josephus, Antiquities, xi. 5); in § 1, Ezra appears as a contemporary of Joiakim the High-priest, in § 5 his death is mentioned as occurring at the same time as that of Joiakim the High-priest, who was succeeded by Eliashib. It seems fatal to this view that, in order to maintain it, it is necessary to strike out, as later glosses, the mention of Nehemiah’s name in Neh 8:9, Neh 10:1.
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The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges
The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges is a biblical commentary set published in parts by Cambridge University Press from 1882 onwards. Anglican bishop John Perowne was the general editor. The first section published was written by theologian Thomas Kelly Cheyne and covered the Book of Micah.
Perowne exercised limited editorial control over the writers of individual commentaries: his aim was "to leave each contributor to the unfettered exercise of his own judgment".