Nehemiah 8 Bible Commentary

The Geneva Study Bible

(Read all of Nehemiah 8)
8:1 And all the people gathered themselves together as one man into the street that [was] before the water gate; and they spake unto Ezra the a scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses, which the LORD had commanded to Israel.

(a) Read (Ezra 7:6).

8:2 And Ezra the priest brought the law before the congregation both of men and women, and all b that could hear with understanding, upon the first day of the seventh month.

(b) Who had age and discretion to understand.

8:3 And he read therein before the street that [was] before the water gate from the morning until c midday, before the men and the women, and those that could understand; and the ears of all the people [were attentive] unto the book of the law.

(c) This declares the great zeal that the people had to hear the word of God.

8:5 And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was d above all the people;) and when he opened it, all the people stood up:

(d) So that his voice might be heard the better.

8:9 And Nehemiah, which [is] the Tirshatha, and Ezra the priest the scribe, and the Levites that taught the people, said unto all the people, This day [is] holy unto the LORD your God; mourn not, nor weep. For all the people e wept, when they heard the words of the law.

(e) In considering their offences against the Law, therefore the Levites do not reprove them for mourning, but assure them of God's mercies if they are repentant.

8:10 Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is f prepared: for [this] day [is] holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the g joy of the LORD is your strength.

(f) That is, remember the poor.
(g) Rejoice in the Lord, and he will give you strength.

8:16 So the people went forth, and brought [them], and made themselves booths, every one upon the h roof of his house, and in their courts, and in the courts of the house of God, and in the street of the water gate, and in the street of the gate of Ephraim.

(h) For their houses were made with flat roofs, read (Deuteronomy 22:8).

8:17 And all the congregation of them that were come again out of the captivity made booths, and sat under the booths: for since the i days of Jeshua the son of Nun unto that day had not the children of Israel done so. And there was very great gladness.

(i) Which was almost a thousand years.