Nehemiah 10:1
Now those that sealed were, Nehemiah, the Tirshatha, the son of Hachaliah, and Zidkijah,
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(1) Zidkijah.—Probably, Zadok the scribe (Nehemiah 13:13), Nehemiah’s secretary. (Comp. Ezra 4:8.)

Nehemiah 10:1. Now those that sealed — Both in their own names, and in the name of all the rest. It may seem strange that Ezra doth not appear among them. But that might be because he was prevented by some sickness, or other extraordinary impediment. It is true we meet with Ezra after this, at the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem, (Nehemiah 12:36,) and therefore he was then freed from this impediment, whatsoever it was. It appears from hence, that the government of the Jews was an aristocracy, or a government in which the nobles were the rulers. This mode of administration continued till the time of the Asmodæan princes, and from thence, by a natural translation, passed into an absolute monarchy, or rather tyranny.

10:1-31 Conversion is separating from the course and custom of this world, devoting ourselves to the conduct directed by the word of God. When we bind ourselves to do the commandments of God, it is to do all his commandments, and to look to him as the Lord, and our Lord.The "Zidkijah" of this passage is probably the same as "Zadok" Nehemiah 13:13. "Zadok" is expressly called "the scribe," and it was probably as the scribe who drew up the document that "Zidkijah" signed it immediately after Nehemiah. CHAPTER 10

Ne 10:1-27. The Names of Those Who Sealed the Covenant.

1. Nehemiah, the Tirshatha—His name was placed first in the roll on account of his high official rank, as deputy of the Persian monarch. All classes were included in the subscription; but the people were represented by their elders (Ne 10:14), as it would have been impossible for every one in the country to have been admitted to the sealing.The names of those that sealed the covenant, Nehemiah 10:1-27. The rest of the people cleave to them: the covenant, Nehemiah 10:28-39.

Those that sealed, both in their own names, and in the name of all the rest. It may seem strange that Ezra doth not appear among them. But that might be because he was prevented, either by death, or by some sickness, or other extraordinary impediment, for which we have this presumption, that whereas Ezra appears, and preacheth, and prayeth with Jeshua and Bani, &c., before the feast of tabernacles, Nehemiah 8:4, &c., we have no mention of him Ne 9, but the whole work of that solemn fast day was managed by them alone, without any mention of Ezra, whose name would not have been omitted, if he had been then present. It is true, we meet with Ezra after this, at the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem, Nehemiah 12:36, and therefore he was then freed from this impediment, whatsoever it was; but thence it appears that he was not dead. Nehemiah, the Tirshatha: this is added to distinguish him from others of that name, whereof we have one, Nehemiah 3:16.

Now those that sealed were,.... That sealed the covenant, made Nehemiah 9:38.

Nehemiah the Tirshatha, the son of Hachaliah; the governor of the Jews:

and Zidkijah; who seems also to have been a prince, since, without, it could not be said it was sealed by their princes, Nehemiah 9:38 though some think both these were priests, and then the princes must be supposed to be among the chief of the people, Nehemiah 10:14, from hence to the end of the twenty seventh their names follow; the names of the priests, Nehemiah 10:2, who were in all twenty one; no mention is made either of Eliashib the high priest, nor of Ezra the priest and scribe; some think the former had not behaved well in his office, and that the latter was either sick, or returned to Babylon, or however hindered by some providence or another, since we hear of him both a little before and after, Nehemiah 8:2 then the names of the Levites, Nehemiah 10:9, in all seventeen, most of which we have met with in this book before; next follow the names of the chief of the people, Nehemiah 10:14, their number in all forty four; and their names may be observed in the list of those that came out of Babylon with Zerubbabel; the whole number of those that sealed, princes, priests, Levites, and chief of the people, were eighty four.

Now those that sealed were, Nehemiah, the Tirshatha, the son of Hachaliah, and Zidkijah,
Nehemiah 10:1-29. The List of ‘those that sealed’: Nehemiah 10:30-39 Special Obligations of the Covenant

1. those that sealed] Literally ‘at the sealings,’ the plur. of the word used in Nehemiah 9:38. As in Jeremiah 32:14, the singular and plural are used apparently of the same documents.

Some commentators are inclined to follow the LXX. ἐπὶ τῶν σφραγιζόντων, as if the words could be rendered ‘among those that sealed or subscribed:’ so apparently the Vulg. ‘signatores.’ But the Hebrew word does not mean the man who affixes his seal, but the thing or document to which it is affixed. Others explain the plur. as indicating the numerous ‘lists’ prepared for signature, as if the different obligations would require different lists. This explanation cannot be pressed. It is sufficient to bear in mind that ‘the sealings’ were very probably ‘parchments’ or ‘tablets,’ and that several would be required for the signature of so large a number.

Nehemiah, the Tirshatha] Cf. Nehemiah 7:65, Nehemiah 8:9. Nehemiah’s name comes first as that of the governor.

Hachaliah] R.V. Hacaliah.

Zidkijah] R.V. Zedekiah. Who this Zedekiah is who receives this honourable place next to the governor we are not told. As his name precedes the priests, we must suppose that he is either an official under the Persian rule ranking next to Nehemiah, or one of royal line (e.g. of the house of Zerubbabel).

The conjecture that he is the same as Zadok ‘the scribe’ in Nehemiah 13:13, and that, having drawn up the document of the Covenant, he therefore signed next after Nehemiah, rests partly on the assumption that ‘Zadok’ and ‘Zedekiah’ are interchangeable names, and partly on the fact that in Ezra 4:8-9; Ezra 4:17 a scribe’s signature follows that of the chief officer. But the identification is not very probable.

Verse 1. - Nehemiah, as Tirshatha, or civil ruler, naturally appended his seal first of all. He was followed by Zidkijah, or Zadok, probably his secretary (Nehemiah 13:13). Nehemiah 10:1(Nehemiah 10:2)

A covenant made (vv. 1-32), and an engagement entered into, to furnish what was needed for the maintenance of the temple, its services, and ministers (Nehemiah 10:33-39). - Vv. 1-28. For the purpose of giving a lasting influence to this day of prayer and fasting, the assembled people, after the confession of sin (given in Nehemiah 9), entered into a written agreement, by which they bound themselves by an oath to separate from the heathen, and to keep the commandments and ordinances of God, - a document being prepared for this purpose, and sealed by the heads of their different houses.

And because of all this we make and write a sure covenant; and our princes, Levites, and priests sign the sealed (document). בּכל־זאת does not mean post omne hoc, after all that we have done this day (Schmid, Bertheau, and others); still less, in omni hoc malo, quod nobis obtigerat (Rashi, Aben Ezra), but upon all this, i.e., upon the foundation of the preceding act of prayer and penitence, we made אמנה, i.e., a settlement, a sure agreement (the word recurs Nehemiah 11:23); hence כּרת is used as with בּרית, Nehemiah 9:8. אמנה may again be taken as the object of כּתבים, we write it; החתוּם ועל be understood as "our princes sealed." החתוּם is the sealed document; comp. Jeremiah 22:11, Jeremiah 22:14. החתוּם על means literally, Upon the sealed document were our princes, etc.; that is, our princes sealed or signed it. Signing was effected by making an impression with a seal bearing a name; hence originated the idiom החתוּם על אשׁר, "he who was upon the sealed document," meaning he who had signed the document by sealing it. By this derived signification is the plural חחתוּמים על (Nehemiah 10:2), "they who were upon the document," explained: they who had signed or sealed the document.

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