Nehemiah 3:12
And next to him repaired Shallum the son of Halohesh, the ruler of the half part of Jerusalem, he and his daughters.
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(12) He and his daughters.—Shallum was governor of the second half-district around Jerusalem; and it has been thought that the “daughters” here are the villages of the district. But needlessly: the women of Jerusalem might do voluntarily what as females they were not pressed to do.

Nehemiah 3:12. Shallum, the ruler of the half part, &c. — That is, of the other half of Jerusalem: see on Nehemiah 3:9. He and his daughters — Who were either heiresses or rich widows, and caused part to be done at their charges.3:1-32 The rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem. - The work was divided, so that every one might know what he had to do, and mind it, with a desire to excel; yet without contention, or separate interests. No strife appears among them, but which should do most for the public good. Every Israelite should lend a hand toward the building up of Jerusalem. Let not nobles think any thing below them, by which they may advance the good of their country. Even some females helped forward the work. Some repaired over against their houses, and one repaired over against his chamber. When a general good work is to be done, each should apply himself to that part which is within his reach. If every one will sweep before his own door, the street will be clean; if every one will mend one, we shall all be mended. Some that had first done helped their fellows. The walls of Jerusalem, in heaps of rubbish, represent the desperate state of the world around, while the number and malice of those who hindered the building, give some faint idea of the enemies we have to contend with, while executing the work of God. Every one must begin at home; for it is by getting the work of God advanced in our own souls that we shall best contribute to the good of the church of Christ. May the Lord thus stir up the hearts of his people, to lay aside their petty disputes, and to disregard their worldly interests, compared with building the walls of Jerusalem, and defending the cause of truth and godliness against the assaults of avowed enemies.The other piece - Rather, "another piece" (as in Nehemiah 3:19, Nehemiah 3:21, Nehemiah 3:27, Nehemiah 3:30). It is conjectured that a verse has fallen out in which Malchijah's and Hashub's "first piece" was mentioned.

The tower of the furnaces - Either a tower at the northwestern angle of the city; or, midway in the western wall. The origin of the name is uncertain.

12. Shallum … he and his daughters—who were either heiresses or rich widows. They undertook to defray the expenses of a part of the wall next them. Of the half part of Jerusalem, i.e. of the other half, &c.: See Poole "Nehemiah 3:9".

He and his daughters; who were either heiresses, or rich widows, and caused part to be done at their charges. And next unto him repaired Shallum, the son of Hallohesh,.... So called, as Ben Melech says, from his being an enchanter of serpents, or a wise prudent counsellor:

the ruler of the half part of Jerusalem; of the other half; see Nehemiah 3:9

he and his daughters; who were rich widows or heiresses, and employed men to build at their own expense; he seems to have had no sons.

And next unto him repaired Shallum the son of Halohesh, the ruler of the half part of Jerusalem, he and his daughters.
12. the ruler of the half part of Jerusalem] R.V. the ruler of half the district of Jerusalem. See note on Nehemiah 3:9. This was the ‘Zion’ half of the city.

he and his daughters] The mention of ‘his daughters’ is strange. Some consider that the word ‘daughters’ is here used in its technical sense of ‘villages’ and ‘country towns’ (cf. Nehemiah 11:25; Nehemiah 11:27), the inhabitants of which placed workers under the command of the ruler of the whole district. Others again accepting this rendering of ‘daughters’ = ‘villages,’ refer the pronoun ‘he’ to ‘the district,’ i.e. ‘the district and the villages adjacent to that quarter of Jerusalem.’

But the most simple and literal explanation is probably the best. The whole chronicle of the restoration of the walls is a register of personal effort. The exceptional mention of women does not justify us in excluding the possibility of their useful cooperation, not only by sympathy and exhortation, but also by gifts of money, by contributions of food, and by the labour of their servants and retainers.Verse 12. - He and his daughters. It seems to be almost impossible that women were pressed into the service, especially when it was one of so much danger (Nehemiah 4:13-21). By "daughters" we must therefore understand the villages contained in Shallum's district, which is agreeable to the use of the term in Nehemiah 11:25, 27, 28. From the gate of the old wall to the valley gate. - Nehemiah 3:6 הישׁנה שׁער does not mean the old gate, for הישׁנה is genitive. Schultz (Jerus. p. 90), Thenius, and Bertheau supply העיר, gate of the old town, and explain the name from the fact that Bezetha, the new town, already existed as a suburb or village in front of the gate, which was named after the contrast. To this Arnold rightly objects (in Herzog's Realencycl. xviii. p. 628) that it is by no means proved that there was at that time any contrast between the old and new towns, and as well as Hupfeld (die topograph. Streitfragen ber Jerus., in the morgenl. Zeitschrift, xv. p. 231) supplies חומה: gate of the old wall. He does not, however, derive this designation from the remark (vv. Nehemiah 3:8), "They fortified Jerusalem unto the broad wall," as though this old wall received its name from having been left undestroyed by the Chaldeans, which is irreconcilable with the fact (4-8) that both the gate of the old wall and the portions of wall adjoining it on each side were now built, but understands the term "old wall" as used in contrast to the "broad wall," which had indeed been rebuilt after the destruction by Joash (2 Kings 14:13). This view we esteem to be correct. The individuals specified as the builders of this gate are not further known. That two principes were employed in the rebuilding of this gate is explained by Ramb. as arising vel quod penitus disturbata a Chaldaeis, vel quod magnis sumtibus reparanda fuit, quos unus princeps ferre non potuit.
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