New International Version
and said: "As far as possible, we have bought back our fellow Jews who were sold to the Gentiles. Now you are selling your own people, only for them to be sold back to us!" They kept quiet, because they could find nothing to say.
King James Bible
And I said unto them, We after our ability have redeemed our brethren the Jews, which were sold unto the heathen; and will ye even sell your brethren? or shall they be sold unto us? Then held they their peace, and found nothing to answer.
Darby Bible Translation
And I said to them, We, according to our ability, have redeemed our brethren the Jews, who were sold to the nations; and will ye even sell your brethren? or shall they be sold unto us? And they were silent and found no answer.
World English Bible
I said to them, "We, after our ability, have redeemed our brothers the Jews that were sold to the nations; and would you even sell your brothers, and should they be sold to us?" Then they held their peace, and found never a word.
Young's Literal Translation
and say to them, 'We have acquired our brethren the Jews, those sold to the nations, according to the ability that is in us, and ye also sell your brethren, and they have been sold to us!' and they are silent, and have not found a word.
Nehemiah 5:8 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
Ye exact usury - This was expressly contrary to the law of God; and was doubly cruel at this time, when they were just returning out of the land of their captivity, and were suffering from the effects of a dearth. Some think that it was about the time of a Sabbatical year, when their land must have lain at rest without cultivation, and during which they were expressly commanded not to exact any debt. Deuteronomy 15:2.
I set a great assembly against them - Brought all these delinquents before the rulers of the people.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
LibraryAn Ancient Nonconformist
'... So did not I, because of the fear of God.'--Neh. v. 15. I do not suppose that the ordinary Bible-reader knows very much about Nehemiah. He is one of the neglected great men of Scripture. He was no prophet, he had no glowing words, he had no lofty visions, he had no special commission, he did not live in the heroic age. There was a certain harshness and dryness; a tendency towards what, when it was more fully developed, became Pharisaism, in the man, which somewhat covers the essential nobleness …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
Influences that Gave Rise to the Priestly Laws and Histories
they retain the right of redemption after they have sold themselves. One of their relatives may redeem them:
So I continued, "What you are doing is not right. Shouldn't you walk in the fear of our God to avoid the reproach of our Gentile enemies?
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