Nehemiah 11:15
Also of the Levites: Shemaiah the son of Hashub, the son of Azrikam, the son of Hashabiah, the son of Bunni;
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
11:1-36 The distribution of the people. - In all ages, men have preferred their own ease and advantage to the public good. Even the professors of religion too commonly seek their own, and not the things of Christ. Few have had such attachment to holy things and holy places, as to renounce pleasure for their sake. Yet surely, our souls should delight to dwell where holy persons and opportunities of spiritual improvement most abound. If we have not this love to the city of our God, and to every thing that assists our communion with the Saviour, how shall we be willing to depart hence; to be absent from the body, that we may be present with the Lord? To the carnal-minded, the perfect holiness of the New Jerusalem would be still harder to bear than the holiness of God's church on earth. Let us seek first the favour of God, and his glory; let us study to be patient, contented, and useful in our several stations, and wait, with cheerful hope, for admission into the holy city of God.See the margin reference notes. Both accounts appear to be extracts from a public official register which Nehemiah caused to be made of his census. The census itself seems to have been confined to the dwellers at Jerusalem. The subjoined table exhibits the differences between the accounts of the entire population of Jerusalem as given in Nehemiah and in Chronicles:

1 Chron ehemiah Tribes of Judah Of Pharez 468 Of Zerah 690 Tribe of Benjamin 956 928 Tribe of Levi Priests 1760 1192 Levites 284 Porters 212 172

According to Nehemiah's numbers, supplemented from Chronicles, the entire adult male population of the city was 3,734, which would give a total population of 14,936. According to Chronicles, supplemented from Nehemiah, the adult males were 4,370, and consequently the entire population, would have been 17,480. As the Nethinims and the Israelites of Ephraim and Manasseh 1 Chronicles 9:3 are not included in either list, we may conclude that the actual number of the inhabitants, after the efforts recorded in Nehemiah 11:1-2, was not much short of 20,000.

11. the ruler of the house of God—assistant of the high priest (Nu 3:32; 1Ch 9:11; 2Ch 19:11). No text from Poole on this verse.

Also of the Levites,.... Who dwelt in Jerusalem:

Shemaiah the son of Hashub: traced from him through Azrikam and Hashabiah to Bunni; these were of the sons of Merari, the third son of Levi, see 1 Chronicles 9:14.

Also of the Levites: Shemaiah the son of Hashub, the son of Azrikam, the son of Hashabiah, the son of Bunni;
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
15. Also] R.V. And.

Hashub] R.V. Hasshub.

the son of Bunni] Instead of this termination to Shemaiah’s genealogy, we find ‘of the sons of Merari’ in 1 Chronicles 9:14.

Verses 15, 16. - Also of the Levites: Shemaiah. Compare 1 Chronicles 9:14. Shemaiah was a descendant of Merari. Together with Shabbethai and Jozabad (ver. 16), he had the superintendence of the outward business of the house of God; or, in other words, of its worldly affairs and money matters. As in the Christian Church a special order was appointed "to serve tables" (Acts 6:2-5), so in the Jewish the secular business of the temple was intrusted to a few carefully-selected persons of the inferior order of the ministry, who were known to have a special capacity for such matters (see 1 Chronicles 26:29). Nehemiah 11:15Of Levites, Shemaiah, a descendant of Bunni, with the members of his house; Shabbethai and Jozabad, "of the heads of the Levites over the outward business of the house of God," i.e., two heads of the Levites who had the care of the outward business of the temple, probably charged with the preservation of the building and furniture, and the office of seeing that all things necessary for the temple worship were duly delivered. The names Shabbethai and Jozabad have already occurred, Nehemiah 8:7, as those of two Levites, and are here also personal names of heads of Levites, as the addition הלויּם מראשׁי informs us. As the office of these two is stated, so also is that of those next following in Nehemiah 11:17; whence it appears that Shemaiah, of whom no such particular is given, was head of the Levites charged with attending on the priests at the sacrificial worship (the האלהים בּית מלאכת, Nehemiah 11:22). The three named in Nehemiah 11:17, Mattaniah an Asaphite, Bakbukiah, and Abda a Jeduthunite, are the chiefs of the three Levitical orders of singers. Mattaniah is called התּחלּה ראשׁ, head of the beginning, which gives no meaning; and should probably, as in the lxx and Vulgate, be read התּהלּה ראשׁ: head of the songs of praise, - he praised for who praised, i.e., sounded the Hodu for prayer; comp. 1 Chronicles 16:5, where Asaph is called the chief of the band of singers. He is followed by Bakbukiah as second, that is, leader of the second band (מאחיו משׁנה like משׁנהוּ, 1 Chronicles 16:5); and Abda the Jeduthunite, as leader of the third. All the Levites in the holy city, i.e., all who dwelt in Jerusalem, amounted to two hundred and eighty-four individuals or fathers of families. The number refers only to the three classes named Nehemiah 11:15-17. For the gatekeepers are separately numbered in Nehemiah 11:19 as one hundred and seventy-two, of the families of Akkub and Talmon.
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