Nehemiah 8:8
Parallel Verses
New International Version
They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read.

New Living Translation
They read from the Book of the Law of God and clearly explained the meaning of what was being read, helping the people understand each passage.

English Standard Version
They read from the book, from the Law of God, clearly, and they gave the sense, so that the people understood the reading.

New American Standard Bible
They read from the book, from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading.

King James Bible
So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
They read out of the book of the law of God, translating and giving the meaning so that the people could understand what was read.

International Standard Version
They read from the Book of the Law of God, distinctly communicating its meaning, so they could understand the reading.

NET Bible
They read from the book of God's law, explaining it and imparting insight. Thus the people gained understanding from what was read.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
They read the Book of God's Teachings clearly and explained the meaning so that the people could understand what was read.

Jubilee Bible 2000
So they read in the book in the law of God clearly and paid attention, and understood the reading.

King James 2000 Bible
So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.

American King James Version
So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.

American Standard Version
And they read in the book, in the law of God, distinctly; and they gave the sense, so that they understood the reading.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And they read in the book of the law of God distinctly and plainly to be understood: and they understood when it was read.

Darby Bible Translation
And they read in the law of God distinctly out of the book, and gave the sense, and caused [them] to understand the reading.

English Revised Version
And they read in the book, in the law of God, distinctly; and they gave the sense, so that they understood the reading.

Webster's Bible Translation
So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.

World English Bible
They read in the book, in the law of God, distinctly; and they gave the sense, so that they understood the reading.

Young's Literal Translation
and they read in the book, in the law of God, explaining -- so as to give the meaning, and they give understanding to the convocation.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

8:1-8 Sacrifices were to be offered only at the door of the temple; but praying and preaching were, and are, services of religion, as acceptably performed in one place as in another. Masters of families should bring their families with them to the public worship of God. Women and children have souls to save, and are therefore to acquaint themselves with the word of God, and to attend on the means of grace. Little ones, as they come to reason, must be trained up in religion. Ministers when they go to the pulpit, should take their Bibles with them; Ezra did so. Thence they must fetch their knowledge; according to that rule they must speak, and must show that they do so. Reading the Scriptures in religious assemblies is an ordinance of God, whereby he is honoured, and his church edified. Those who hear the word, should understand it, else it is to them but an empty sound of words. It is therefore required of teachers that they explain the word, and give the sense of it. Reading is good, and preaching is good, but expounding makes reading the better understood, and preaching the more convincing. It has pleased God in almost every age of the church to raise up, not only those who have preached the gospel, but also those who have given their views of Divine truth in writing; and though many who have attempted to explain Scripture, have darkened counsel by words without knowledge, yet the labours of others are of excellent use. All that we hear must, however, be brought to the test of Scripture. They heard readily, and minded every word. The word of God demands attention. If through carelessness we let much slip in hearing, there is danger that through forgetfulness we shall let all slip after hearing.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 8. - They read in the book in the law of God distinctly. That is, so that every word could be distinctly heard. Compare Ezra 4:18, where a cognate word is translated "plainly." And gave the sense. Translated the Hebrew words into the popular Aramaic or Chaldee. And caused them to understand the reading. Literal]y, "in the reading." In the course of the reading they caused the people to understand by explaining the meaning of each passage.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

So they read in the book,.... Ezra and those with him; he first began to read and expound, and when weary they relieved him, and did the same:

in the law of God distinctly; which was the book they read in, and which they read plainly and intelligibly, so as to be heard and understood; this seems to respect the clear and distinct pronunciation of the words of it, and not the explanation or meaning of it, which is after expressed; some think the sense is, that they first read it in Hebrew, and then translated it into Chaldee, that the people might better understand it, being just come out of Babylon, where they had been used to the Chaldee language; but though this was a practice in later times, it does not seem to have obtained so early, or that there was a necessity of it:

and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading; not hereby how to read it, but chiefly to understand what was read, that they might clearly know their duty to God and men: the Talmudists (q) give the meaning of the text thus; "by the law of God" they understand the Scripture; by the phrase "distinctly", the Targum or translation of it into Chaldee; by "the sense", the verses or the accents; and by "the reading", the distinction of the accents: some think from hence came the practice of reading the law in the synagogues every sabbath day, Acts 13:15.

(q) T. Bab. Nedarim, fol. 37. 2. & Megillah, fol. 3. 1. & Hieros. Megillah, fol. 74. 4.



Nehemiah 8:8 Additional Commentaries
Context
Ezra Reads the Law
7Also Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, the Levites, explained the law to the people while the people remained in their place. 8They read from the book, from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading.
Cross References
Ezra 4:18
The letter you sent us has been read and translated in my presence.

Nehemiah 8:7
The Levites--Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan and Pelaiah--instructed the people in the Law while the people were standing there.

Nehemiah 8:9
Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and teacher of the Law, and the Levites who were instructing the people said to them all, "This day is holy to the LORD your God. Do not mourn or weep." For all the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the Law.

Nehemiah 8:12
Then all the people went away to eat and drink, to send portions of food and to celebrate with great joy, because they now understood the words that had been made known to them.
Treasury of Scripture

So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.

and gave the sense

Habakkuk 2:2 And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it …

Matthew 5:21,22,27,28 You have heard that it was said of them of old time, You shall not …

Luke 24:27,32,45 And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded to them …

Acts 8:30-35 And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, …

Acts 17:2,3 And Paul, as his manner was, went in to them, and three sabbath days …

Acts 28:23 And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into …

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