וַיְהִי כַאֲשֶׁר נִשְׁמַע לְסַנְבַלַּט וְטוֹבִיָּה וּלְגֶשֶׁם הָעַרְבִי וּלְיֶתֶר אֹיְבֵינוּ כִּי בָנִיתִי אֶת־הַחוֹמָהּ 6:1
וְלֹא־נוֹתַר בָּה פָּרֶץ גַּם עַד־הָעֵת הַהִיא דְּלָתוֹת לֹא־הֶעֱמַדְתִּי בַשְּׁעָרִים׃
Nehe. 6:1 And it was when it was told to Sanballat and Tobiah, and to Geshem, the Arabian, and to the rest of our enemies, that I had rebuilt the wall and no breach remained in it (although up to that time I had erected no doors in the gates),
וַיִּשְׁלַח סַנְבַלַּט וְגֶשֶׁם אֵלַי לֵאמֹר לְכָה וְנִוָּעֲדָה יַחְדָּו בַּכְּפִירִים בְּבִקְעַת אוֹנוֹ וְהֵמָּה חֹשְׁבִים 6:2
לַעֲשׂוֹת לִי רָעָה׃
Nehe. 6:2 that Sanballat sent, and Geshem, to me saying, “Come, and meet together in Kephirim in the valley of Ono.” But they were planning to do harm to me.
וָאֶשְׁלְחָה עֲלֵיהֶם מַלְאָכִים לֵאמֹר מְלָאכָה גְדוֹלָה אֲנִי עֹשֶׂה וְלֹא אוּכַל לָרֶדֶת לָמָּה תִשְׁבַּת הַמְּלָאכָה 6:3
כַּאֲשֶׁר אַרְפֶּהָ וְיָרַדְתִּי אֲלֵיכֶם׃
Nehe. 6:3 So I sent messengers to them saying, “I am doing important work, so I am not able to go down. Why should the work cease so that I could leave it and come down to you?”
The first word in this verse, translated as so I sent, is another exception to my theory of vavs. According to me, the Hebrew should be yTix.l;v' ynIa]w.
וַיִּשְׁלְחוּ אֵלַי כַּדָּבָר הַזֶּה אַרְבַּע פְּעָמִים וָאָשִׁיב אוֹתָם כַּדָּבָר הַזֶּה׃ 6:4
Nehe. 6:4 Then they sent this same word to me another four times, and I answered them this same word.
The seventh word in this verse, translated as and I answered, is another exception to my theory of vavs. According to me, the Hebrew should be yTibyvi ynIa]w.
וַיִּשְׁלַח אֵלַי סַנְבַלַּט כַּדָּבָר הַזֶּה פַּעַם חֲמִישִׁית אֶת־נַעֲרוֹ וְאִגֶּרֶת פְּתוּחָה בְּיָדוֹ׃ 6:5
Nehe. 6:5 So Sanballat sent his servant to me according to this word a fifth time, and an open letter was in his hand.
כָּתוּב בָּהּ בַּגּוֹיִם נִשְׁמָע וְגַשְׁמוּ אֹמֵר אַתָּה וְהַיְּהוּדִים חֹשְׁבִים לִמְרוֹד עַל־כֵּן אַתָּה בוֹנֶה הַחוֹמָה 6:6
וְאַתָּה הֹוֶה לָהֶם לְמֶלֶךְ כַּדְּבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה׃
Nehe. 6:6 In it was written, “It is heard among the nations, and Geshem says, you and the Jews are planning to revolt; therefore you are rebuilding the wall, and you will be becoming for a king to them according to these words.
וְגַם־נְבִיאִים הֶעֱמַדְתָּ לִקְרֹא עָלֶיךָ בִירוּשָׁלִַם לֵאמֹר מֶלֶךְ בִּיהוּדָה וְעַתָּה יִשָּׁמַע לַמֶּלֶךְ כַּדְּבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה 6:7
וְעַתָּה לְכָה וְנִוָּעֲצָה יַחְדָּו׃
Nehe. 6:7 And you have even appointed prophets to proclaim about you in Jerusalem saying, ‘A king is in Judah.’ So now it will be told to the king these same words. Then now come and consult together.”
וָאֶשְׁלְחָה אֵלָיו לֵאמֹר לֹא נִהְיָה כַּדְּבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה אֲשֶׁר אַתָּה אֹומֵר כִּי מִלִּבְּךָ אַתָּה בֹודָאם׃ 6:8
Nehe. 6:8 But I sent to him saying, “No such things as these that you are saying have occurred, but you are inventing them from your own mind.”
The first word in this verse, translated as but I sent, is another exception to my theory of vavs. The Hebrew should be yTix.l;v' ynIa]w.
כִּי כֻלָּם מְיָרְאִים אוֹתָנוּ לֵאמֹר יִרְפּוּ יְדֵיהֶם מִן־הַמְּלָאכָה וְלֹא תֵעָשֶׂה וְעַתָּה חַזֵּק אֶת־יָדָי׃ 6:9
Nehe. 6:9 Indeed, they were making all of us afraid, thinking: “Their hands would be weakened from the work, so it could not be done.” Then now, strengthen my hands!
וַאֲנִי־בָאתִי בֵּית שְׁמַעְיָה בֶן־דְּלָיָה בֶּן־מְהֵיטַבְאֵל וְהוּא עָצוּר וַיֹּאמֶר נִוָּעֵד אֶל־בֵּית הָאֱלֹהִים אֶל־תּוֹךְ 6:10
הַהֵיכָל וְנִסְגְּרָה דַּלְתוֹת הַהֵיכָל כִּי בָּאִים לְהָרְגֶךָ וְלַיְלָה בָּאִים לְהָרְגֶךָ׃
Nehe. 6:10 Then I entered the house of Shemaiah son of Delaiah son of Mehetabel and it was closed up, and he said, “We must go together to the house of God, into the Temple, and the Temple doors will be shut, for they must be coming to slay you, and they may be coming to slay you at night.”
Wow, here for the first time in either Ezra or Nehemiah there is a non-exception to my theory of vavs. The first two words are in the appropriate form to be translated as then I entered. Must be an oversight on the scribe’s part.
וָאֹמְרָה הַאִישׁ כָּמוֹנִי יִבְרָח וּמִי כָמוֹנִי אֲשֶׁר־יָבוֹא אֶל־הַהֵיכָל וָחָי לֹא אָבוֹא׃ 6:11
Nehe. 6:11 And I said, “Should one such as I run away? And who is there such as I who can come into the Temple and survive? I will not go.”
The first word in this verse, translated as and I said, is another exception that we have seen several times. The Hebrew should be ytir'm.ai ynIa]w.
There’s something else going on in this verse that is far more significant. Ezra was a priest, Nehemiah was not. Only a non-priest would have said what the author of this verse said. So at least this verse was written by Nehemiah. But I’m inclined to suppose that the entire book was written by the namesake of this book. Might this end the controversy over whose book this is? For me it does. [Return to Nehe. 1:1]
וָאַכִּירָה וְהִנֵּה לֹא־אֱלֹהִים שְׁלָחוֹ כִּי הַנְּבוּאָה דִּבֶּר עָלַי וְטוֹבִיָּה וְסַנְבַלַּט שְׂכָרוֹ׃ 6:12
Nehe. 6:12 Then I discerned, and behold, God had not sent him, because of the prophesy he had spoken against me, and Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him.
The first word in this verse, translated as then I discerned, is another exception to my theory. The Hebrew should be ytiryKihi ynIa]w.
לְמַעַן שָׂכוּר הוּא לְמַעַן־אִירָא וְאֶעֱשֶׂה־כֵּן וְחָטָאתִי וְהָיָה לָהֶם לְשֵׁם רָע לְמַעַן יְחָרְפוּנִי׃ 6:13
Nehe. 6:13 For that purpose he was hired, so that I would be afraid and do so, and I would sin, and it would be for them for a bad name, by which they could taunt me.
The sixth word in this verse, translated as and [I would] do so, is another exception to my theory of vavs. The Hebrew should be ytiyfi['w>. Now, strange, but the second next word (the eighth), translated as and I would sin, is in the correct form and conforms to my theory for the second time.
זָכְרָה אֱלֹהַי לְטוֹבִיָּה וּלְסַנְבַלַּט כְּמַעֲשָׂיו אֵלֶּה וְגַם לְנוֹעַדְיָה הַנְּבִיאָה וּלְיֶתֶר הַנְּבִיאִים אֲשֶׁר הָיוּ 6:14
Nehe. 6:14 My God, remember these acts, Tobiah's, according to his works, and Sanballat's, and also the prophetess Noadiah's, and the rest of the prophets, who were making me afraid.
וַתִּשְׁלַם הַחוֹמָה בְּעֶשְׂרִים וַחֲמִשָּׁה לֶאֱלוּל לַחֲמִשִּׁים וּשְׁנַיִם יוֹם׃ 6:15
Nehe. 6:15 And the wall was completed on Elul's twenty-fifth, after fifty-two days.
וַיְהִי כַּאֲשֶׁר שָׁמְעוּ כָּל־אוֹיְבֵינוּ וַיִּרְאוּ כָּל־הַגּוֹיִם אֲשֶׁר סְבִיבֹתֵינוּ וַיִּפְּלוּ מְאֹד בְּעֵינֵיהֶם וַיֵּדְעוּ כִּי מֵאֵת 6:16
אֱלֹהֵינוּ נֶעֶשְׂתָה הַמְּלָאכָה הַזֹּאת׃
Nehe. 6:16 And it was when all our enemies heard, that all the nations that surrounded us became afraid and were very downfallen in their own eyes, as they construed that this work had been produced from our God.
גַּם בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם מַרְבִּים חֹרֵי יְהוּדָה אִגְּרֹתֵיהֶם הוֹלְכוֹת עַל־טוֹבִיָּה וַאֲשֶׁר לְטוֹבִיָּה בָּאוֹת אֲלֵיהֶם׃ 6:17
Nehe. 6:17 Also In those days from many of the nobles of Judah their letters were going to Tobiah and what were Tobiah's were coming to them,
כִּי־רַבִּים בִּיהוּדָה בַּעֲלֵי שְׁבוּעָה לוֹ כִּי־חָתָן הוּא לִשְׁכַנְיָה בֶן־אָרַח וִיהוֹחָנָן בְּנוֹ לָקַח אֶת־בַּת־מְשֻׁלָּם 6:18
Nehe. 6:18 because many in Judah were his sworn allies, as he was son-in-law to Shacaniah son of Arach, and his son, Jehohanan, had taken a daughter of Meshullam son of Berechiah as wife.
גַּם טוֹבֹתָיו הָיוּ אֹמְרִים לְפָנַי וּדְבָרַי הָיוּ מוֹצִיאִים לוֹ אִגְּרוֹת שָׁלַח טוֹבִיָּה לְיָרְאֵנִי׃ 6:19
Nehe. 6:19 In addition, they had been speaking of his goodness before me, and my words had been brought out to him. Tobiah sent letters to frighten me.
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