Nehemiah 3:22
And after him repaired the priests, the men of the plain.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(22) The men of the plain.—Priests dwelling in the Jordan valley, the “Kikkar” of Scripture.

Nehemiah 3:22. The priests, the men of the plain — Either of the plains of Jordan, or of the plain country round about Jerusalem, as it is called Nehemiah 12:28. Probably they were thus called, because they or their parents now or formerly dwelt in those parts, whence they came to Jerusalem when the service of the temple required it.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 word here translated "plain" is applied in the rest of Scripture almost exclusively to the Ghor or Jordan valley. Compare, however, Nehemiah 12:28.19. at the turning of the wall—that is, the wall across the Tyropœon, being a continuation of the first wall, connecting Mount Zion with the temple wall [Barclay]. Either of the plains of Jordan; or of the plain country round about Jerusalem, its it is called, Nehemiah 12:28. And they are thus called, because they, or their parents, either were born, or now did or formerly had dwelt, in those parks; whence they came to Jerusalem, when the service of the temple required it. And after him repaired the priests, the men of the plain. Either of the plain of Jericho, where, in later times at least, there was a station of the priests, or of the plain about Jerusalem; those also assisted in the repairs of the wall. And after him repaired the priests, the men of {e} the plain.

(e) Who dwelt in the plain country by Jordan and Jericho.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
22. the priests, the men of the plain] R.V. the men of the Plain. R.V. marg. ‘Or, Circuit’. Literally, ‘the men of the Ciccar,’ LXX. Ἐκχεχάρ, Vulg. ‘de campestribus Jordanis.’

Some have explained the term to refer to the neighbourhood of Jerusalem according to its use in Nehemiah 12:28 ‘the Plain (or Circuit) round about Jerusalem.’ Others have explained its use in this passage by its technical application to the Jordan plain, Genesis 13:10; Genesis 19:17; 2 Samuel 18:23. As in Nehemiah 12:28 the reference to Jerusalem is carefully expressed, the absolute use of the word here may be thought to favour the latter signification. If so, the priests mentioned came from Jericho and the other cities of ‘the Plain,’ ἡ περίχωρος τοῦ Ἰορδάνου, Matthew 3:5.Verse 22. - The priests who had lands in the Jordan valley seem to be intended by the men of the plain, hak-kikkar, "the plain," without further addition, having always that meaning in Scripture. We have already heard that the men of Jericho were engaged in the work (ver. 2). The wall from the steps leading from the city of David to the angle opposite the armoury. From Nehemiah 3:16 onwards we find for the most part אחריו, after him, instead of ידו על, which only occurs again in Nehemiah 3:17 and Nehemiah 3:19. Nehemiah the son of Azbuk, the ruler of half the district of Beth-zur (see rem. on 2 Chronicles 11:7), repaired the wall as far as "opposite the sepulchres of David, and unto the pool that was made, and to the house of the heroes." The sepulchres of David are the sepulchres of the house of David in the city of David (comp. 2 Chronicles 32:33). "Opposite the sepulchres of David" is the length of wall on the eastern side of Zion, where was probably, as Thenius endeavours to show in the Zeitschr. of the deutsch morgenl. Gesellsch. xxi. p. 495f., an entrance to the burying-place of the house of David, which was within the city. The "pool that was made" must be sought at no great distance, in the Tyropoean valley, but has not yet been discovered. The view of Krafft (Topographie von Jerusalem, p. 152), that it was the reservoir artificially constructed by Hezekiah, between the two walls for the water of the old pool (Isaiah 22:11), rests upon incorrect combinations. "The house of the heroes" is also unknown. In Nehemiah 3:17 and Nehemiah 3:18, the lengths of wall repaired by the three building parties there mentioned are not stated. "The Levites, Rehum the son of Bani," stands for: the Levites under Rehum the son of Bani. There was a Rehum among those who returned with Zerubbabel, Nehemiah 12:3; Ezra 2:2; and a Bani occurs among the Levites in Nehemiah 9:5. After him repaired Hashabiah, the ruler of half the district of Keilah, for his district. Keilah, situate, according to Joshua 15:44 and 1 Samuel 23:1, in the hill region, is probably the village of Kila, discovered by Tobler (vol. iii. p. 151), eastward of Beit Dshibrin. By the addition לפלכּו, for his district, i.e., that half of the whole district which was under his rule, "it is expressly stated that the two halves of the district of Keilah worked apart one from the other" (Bertheau). The other half is mentioned in the verse next following.
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