Also they reported his good deeds before me, and uttered my words to him. And Tobiah sent letters to put me in fear.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Reported his good deeds.—Besides the correspondence thus carried on. these nobles strove to exalt the character of Tobiah to tne governor, while they made the enemy acquainted with all that went on. This intelligence enabled him to write the disquieting letters which Nehemiah says he was in the habit of receiving.
Nehemiah 6:19. Also, they reported his good deeds before me — To such a degree of impudence were they arrived, that they highly commended Tobiah as a very worthy man in the presence of Nehemiah, who knew so much of his wickedness. And uttered my words to him — Informed him of all I spake or did. We learn from the contents of this chapter, that pious people, especially those who labour for the glory of God, are exposed to many troubles and oppositions, not only from their declared enemies, who attack them with open force, or by craft and calumny, but also from those whom they look upon as their brethren. It appears also from the wise, steady, and pious conduct of Nehemiah, that those who labour for the public good ought never to be staggered by the threats and slanders of the wicked, because, with the blessing of God, who watches over them, they will happily overcome all opposition. Nehemiah 2:10, Nehemiah 2:19, and was perhaps a bought slave of Sanballat's, yet he was in such a position that Jewish nobles readily contracted affinity with him. This is quite in harmony with the practice of the East, where slaves often fill high positions and make great marriages. and uttered my words to him; reported both what he said and did; for the word used signifies both words and actions:
and uttered my words to him; reported both what he said and did; for the word used signifies both words and actions:Also they reported his good deeds before me, and uttered my words to him. And Tobiah sent letters to put me in fear.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)19. reported … uttered] R.V. spoke of … reported. The Hebrew gives the idea of continuous action. They endeavoured to convince Nehemiah that Tobiah’s professions of goodwill were sincere. Perhaps too they spoke of the generous way in which he distributed money among the Jews. On the other hand they communicated to Tobiah all that Nehemiah said and did, with the view of supplying him with material for charges against Nehemiah to be made before the Persian king, or for slanders to the Jewish people. The word for ‘His good deeds,’ or ‘virtues,’ (tôbôthâv) is perhaps a play on the name ‘Tobiah.’
Tobiah … in fear] i.e. letters like that of Sanballat quoted above (Nehemiah 6:5-8).Verse 19. - Also they reported his good deeds, etc. Rather, "they even reported" - they went so far as to speak to me of his good actions, perhaps representing the bribes which he dispensed (ver. 12) as given from charitable motives. And they uttered my words, or "communicated my affairs, to him. They made him acquainted with all my proceedings.
Nehemiah 6:14 Nehemiah concludes his account of the stratagems of his enemies, with the wish that God would think upon them according to their works. In expressing it, he names, besides Tobiah and Sanballat, the prophetess Noadiah and the rest of the prophets who, like Shemaiah, would have put him in fear: whence we perceive, 1st, that the case related (Nehemiah 6:10-13) is given as only one of the chief events of the kind (מיראים, like Nehemiah 6:9, Nehemiah 6:19); and 2nd, that false prophets were again busy in the congregation, as in the period preceding the captivity, and seeking to seduce the people from hearkening to the voice of the true prophets of God, who preached repentance and conversation as the conditions of prosperity.
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