The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Second Book of Esdras or the Book of Nehemias
Here is a list of the priests and Levites who came back from exile with Zoro-babel, Salathiel’s son, and Josue. Saraia, Jeremias, Esdras,
Amaria, Melluch, Hattus,
Sebenias, Rheum, Merimuth,
Addo, Genthon, Abia,
Miamin, Madia, Belga,
Semeia, Joiarib, (Joiada),✻ Sellum, Amoc, Helcias
and Idaia were the chief priests who had the preeminence among their brethren in Josue’s time.
The chief Levites were Jesua, Bennui, Cedmihel, Sarebia, Juda and Mathanias, who, with their clansmen, had charge of the music;
also Becbecia and Hanni, whose clansmen had various other offices assigned to them.
The high priesthood passed from Josue through Joacim, Eliasib,
Joiada and Jonathan to Jeddoa.
In Joacim’s time the clan of Saraia was represented by Maraia, that of Jeremias by Hanania,
and the other twenty by Mosollam, Johanan,
Zechri, Phelti (who represented both Miamin and Madia),
Hasebia and Nathanael.
There was a list made, at the time when Darius was king of Persia, of all who had been heads of the Levitical and priestly clans in the days of Eliasib, Joiada, Johanan and Jeddoa.✻
In the book of Annals, the Levite chiefs are only entered down to the days of Eliasib’s grandson Jonathan.
… The duties of the Levite chiefs were thus divided; Hasebia, Serebia, Josue, (Bennui), Cedmihel and their clansmen took their turn in due order at singing of praise and giving of thanks, as David bade, that was God’s servant;
Mathania, Becbecia, Obedia, Mosollam, Telmon and Accub must keep the gates and the courts before the gates.
These held office in the days of Joacim, son of Josue son of Josedec, when Nehemias was governor and Esdras was priest and scribe.
At the time when the wall of Jerusalem was dedicated, the Levites, from all their scattered homes, were summoned up to Jerusalem; theirs to interpret the joy and thanksgiving which this dedication brought, with song and cymbals, with harp and zither.
From the lowlands about Jerusalem they came, these makers of music, from the townships of Nethuphati,
from their residence at Galgal, from Geba and Azmaveth, and wherever there were colonies of singers at a distance from Jerusalem itself.
Priests and Levites rid themselves of all defilement, then did as much for the people, and for the walls and gates themselves.
And I, Nehemias, would have the chief men of Juda mount on the wall, and two choirs of singers to escort them with chants of praise. One choir went along the wall to the right, in the direction of the Scavengers’ Gate,
with Osaias and half the chiefs of Juda behind it;
then Azarias, Esdras and Mosollam; then (half) the men of Juda and Benjamin;✻ then Semeia and Jeremias;
then some of the priests with trumpets, led by Zacharias, that came down through Jonathan, Semeia, Mathanias, Michaias and Zechur from Asaph himself;
the others were Semeia, Azareel, Malalai, Galalai, Maai, Nathanael, Judas and Hanani. So they went, and with them went the music planned by God’s servant David, and the scribe Esdras marched at their head. When they reached the Gate of the Well,
an upward climb confronted them; up the steps of David’s Keep they went, and up the slope that passes David’s palace, till they reached the Water-gate in the east wall.
The second choir, with the same chant of praise, marched in the other direction, I myself and half the people accompanying it; climbed the wall and the Furnace Tower, and so went on where the wall was broadest,
past the Gate of Ephraim, and the old gate, and the Fishmongers’ Gate, and the Tower of Hananeel and the Tower of Emath, and on to the Shepherds’ Gate. At last they reached the Watch-tower Gate, and came to a halt there.
Then the two choirs stood together at God’s house giving praise. I, too, and the chiefs who were with me
had priests with trumpets for our escort, Eliachim, Maasia, Miamin, Michea, Elioenai, Zacharia and Hanania;
also Maasia, Semeia, Eleazar, Azzi, Johanan, Melchia, Aelam and Ezer. Loud sang the singers, and loud sang Jezraia at their head.
Great was the slaughtering of victims that day, and greatly they rejoiced, women and children with the rest, at the signal mercy the Lord had shewn them; such a cry of triumph went up from Jerusalem as was heard far away.
At this time they appointed certain priests and Levites to take charge of the treasury, and receive offering and first-fruit and tithe from the city chiefs, in honour and gratitude; so well content were the men of Juda with the ministrations of priest and Levite both.✻
And ever they kept true to the old observances, God honoured, defilement cleansed away, singers and porters fulfilling the duties which David, and David’s son Solomon, enjoined upon them.
Ever since David’s time and Asaph’s there had been masters of the choir to give praise and thanks;
and now, in the times of Zorobabel and of Nehemias, men assigned a daily portion both to choristers and to door-keepers; Israel honoured Levi with gifts, and Levi Aaron.
The Holy Bible