Class Notes on Sacred History
Volume II: First Samuel through Nehemiah.
J. W. McGarvey (1893)
Table of Contents
§ I. NEHEMIAH OBTAINS PERMISSION TO REBUILD
JERUSALEM. i. 1-ii. 20.
1. He Is Distressed about the Condition of the City and the
People. i. 1-11.
- Which month is called Chislev?
- Twentieth year of whom? 1, cf. ii. 1.
- Was it news to him that the walls had been broken down? 3.
- Why then such distress? 4.
- Whence the quotation in 8, 9, cf. Deut. xxx. 1-5.
- What mercy in the sight of the king desired? 11, cf. ii. 5.
- What the duties of the cupbearer? 11.
2. His Request Is Granted. ii. 1-8.
- Which month was Nisan? 1.
- How long his mourning? Cf. i. 1.
- Why was he afraid? 2.
- Why did he pray? 4, 5.
- Why was the queen present? 6.
- Why wish the letters? 7, 8.
- What was "the king's forest"?
- How long was this after Ezra's commission? 1, cf. Ez. vii. 8.
3. His Journey, and a Secret Examination of the Ruins. 9-16.
- Why the military escort? 9, cf. Ez. viii. 22.
- Who were Sanballat and Tobiah? 10, cf. iv. 1, 2; Ez. iv. 1-24.
- Why so secret in his movements? 12. 
4. His Purpose Made Known, and the Enemy Excited. 17-20.
- Meaning of "strengthened their hands"? 18.
- Why charge them with rebellion? 19.
- Why the title, "God of heaven"? 20, 4; i. 5, cf. Ez. i. 2; vi. 10; vii. 12.
§ II. THE WALLS REBUILT. iii. 1-iv. 23.
1. The Work Distributed in Forty-two Sections. iii. 1-32.
- Why this distribution?
- Why say, "builded" for some, and "repaired" for the rest?
- What the value of this chapter?
2. The Enemies Mock, and Nehemiah prays. iv. 1-6.
- What the motive of Sanballat?
- Why did Nehemiah pray for their captivity? 4, 5.
- Why the work so rapid? 6.
3. A Plot of the Enemy Defeated. 7-15.
- Why was Judah discouraged? 10.
- Who were the Jews "which dwelt by them"? 12.
4. Precaution against an Attack. 16-23.
- Who meant by, "half of my servants"? 16.
- How work with one hand, and hold a weapon with the other? 17.
- Why not undress? 23.
- Meaning of, "went with his weapon to the water"? 23.
§ III. OPPRESSION OF THE POOR BROKEN UP. v. 1-19.
1. Complaints of Suffering and Usury. v. 1-5.
- Why mortgage rather than sell?
- What law was there for mortgaging?
- What right to sell their children? 5.
- Cause of this trouble?
2. The Evil Corrected. 6-13. 
- How could it be claimed that usury was wrong? 7.
- Why exact it of the heathen? 10.
- What fields, etc. restored? 11, cf. 3.
- Why restore the hundredth part? 11.
- Meaning of, "shake out"? 13.
3. Nehemiah's Own Example. 14-19.
- Meaning of, "bread of the governor"? 14.
- Point in not buying land? 16.
- Why the one hundred and fifty men at his table? 17.
- How was he able to bear the expense?
- What effect had his example in correcting usury?
- Why pray, "Remember unto me, O my God, for good"? 19.
§ IV. THE PLOTTINGS OF THE ENEMY. vi. 1-vii. 4.
1. A Conference Requested. vi. 1-4.
- Meaning of, "doors in the gates"? 1.
- Purpose of the request? 2.
- Force of his response? 3.
2. A False Charge Presented. 5-9.
- Design of this charge?
3. Treacherous Counsel within the City. 10-14.
- Meaning of, "shut up"? 10.
- What would have been the sin and evil report?
- Why these false prophets? 14.
- Why the prayer against them? 14.
4. Treacherous Correspondence with Tobiah. 15-19.
- Which the month Elul? 15.
- How could they build the wall in fifty two days? 15.
- In what sense, "sworn unto him"?  18.
- Design of the correspondence? 18, 19.
- When had these marriages taken place? 18, cf. Ez. ix. 14.
5. The City carefully Guarded. vii. 1-4.
- Why was Hanani present? 2, cf. i. 1, 2.
- Meaning of, "governor of the castle"? 2.
- Why open so late? 3.
- Why every watcher opposite his own house? 3.
- Why so few inhabitants? 4.
§ V. THE GENEALOGY OF ZERUBBABEL'S CARAVAN.
- Why this repeated? Cf. Ez. ii. 1-70.
- What differences? and how accounted for?
- Meaning of, "the book of the genealogy"? 5, cf. Matt. i. 1.
- Where had it been kept?
§ VI. THE READING OF THE LAW. viii. 1-18.
1. The Time, the Place and The Reading. viii. 1-3.
- What prompted the people's request?
- How long the reading?
- Meaning of, "broad place that was before the water gate"? 1, cf. viii. 16.
- Had the outer court of the temple been walled in?
2. The Method of Procedure. 4-8.
- Why the thirteen with Ezra? 4.
- Why the other thirteen? 7.
- Why did the people stand up? 5, 6.
- How did the Levites cause "the people to understand"? 7, 8.
3. The People Comforted. 9-12.
- Why the weeping? 9.
- Why was the day holy? 9, cf. 2.
- Why give presents and make mirth? 12.
4. The Feast of Tabernacles Observed. 13-18. 
- Why only the heads of houses the second day? 13.
- What is that had not been done since Joshua? and why? 17.
- Why the reading every day? 18, cf. Deut. xxxi. 10, 11.
§ VII. A CONFESSION OF SINS AND A COVENANT. ix. 1-x. 39.
1. A Penitent Assembly. ix. 1-3.
- Why the fasting and humiliation? 1, cf. viii. 9, 10.
- How long after the feast? 1.
- Why another reading? 3.
2. A Prayer of the Levites. 4-33.
- What the general character of the prayer?
- To what Old Testament books did they allude?
- In what sense were they servants? 36, 37.
- What covenant and sealings? 38.
3. The Parties Who Sealed the Covenant. x. 1-29.
- What meant by it?
- Had they any doubt as to the origin of the law? 29, cf. ix. 13, 14.
4. The Statutes Which They Covenanted To Keep. 30-39.
- Why the specifications?
- Why an annual poll-tax of one third shekel? 32, cf. Ex. xxx. 13; Matt. xvii. 24.
- Design of this procedure?
§ VIII. A REPEOPLING OF JERUSALEM. xi. 1-36.
1. The Plan Adopted. xi. 1, 2.
- What the policy of it? and why needed?
2. A Register of the Chiefs in the City. 3-24.
- How are they classified? 3.
- Who the last two classes? See I. Chron. ix. 2; I. Ki. ix. 20-22.
- What was Ophel? 21.
- Why this register? 
3. The Cities of Judah and Benjamin at This Time Inhabited.
- Why so few?
§ IX. THE DEDICATION OF THE WALLS. xii. 1-47.
1. A Register of Priests and Levites. xii. 1-26.
- To what date is it brought down? 22.
- Did Nehemiah write all of it? cf. x. 11; xiii. 28.
2. The Walls Are Dedicated. 27-43.
- State in brief the process.
- Who led the two processions? 36, 38.
3. Keepers of Tithes Appointed. 44-47.
§ X. CERTAIN REFORMS EFFECTED BY NEHEMIAH. xiii. 1-31.
1. Separation from the Moabites and Ammonites. xiii. 1-3.
- Meaning of the law?
- Where written? Deut. xxiii. 3-5.
2. An Unlawful Privilege of Tobiah Broken Up. 4-9.
- How was he allied to Eliashib? 5, cf. vi. 15-19; xiii. 28.
- On what plea the privilege granted?
- Had Nehemiah resigned his office? 6.
3. Neglected Tithes Restored. 10-14.
- Why had the Levites fled to the fields? 10.
- Why the tithes neglected so often?
4. Sabbath-breaking Broken Up. 15-22.
- Why appoint Levites over the city gates? 22.
5. Heathen Marriages Broken Up. 23-31.
- In what sense did he curse them? 25.
- Why so different from  Ezra? 25, cf. Ex. ix. 1-3.
- Force of the reference to Solomon? 26.
- Why chase the son of Joiada away? 28.
- What became of him? 1, cf. Josephus, Antiquities, XI. viii. 4.
- At what date does the history close? 6. [The thirty-second year of Artaxerxes = B. C. 431.]
- To what date is the genealogy of the priests brought down? xii. 10, 11, 22, cf. Josephus, Antiquities, XI. viii. 4. [Alexander's invasion was B. C. 332.]
- When, then, was the book completed?
- What was the distinctive work of Nehemiah?
- What motive prompted him to undertake it?
- When, where, and under what circumstances did he conceive the purpose?
- What danger in avowing it? and how averted?
- How was he affected when he heard the condition of Jerusalem, and of the returned captives?
- What authority did he obtain for his purpose?
- What were his first movements on reaching Jerusalem?
- How did he distribute the work of rebuilding?
- With what opposition did he meet? and how did he provide against it?
- What evil among his own people did he discover? and how did he correct it?
- What example of unselfishness did he set before them?
- When the work was nearly completed, what new plots of the enemy?
- What treacherous advice from his friends?
- What  treacherous correspondence was detected?
- What precautions were then taken against a sudden attack?
- What document is copied in chapter vii. 1-73?
- Whence obtained?
- As it is found in Ezra and Nehemiah both, what inference as to the authorship of the two books?
- How the differences accounted for?
- When, and where did Ezra begin his work of publicly teaching the law?
- How long after he first came to Jerusalem? Cf. Ez. vii. 7.
- Where had he been all this time?
- Describe the reading and interpretation.
- What festival was now renewed, and how observed?
- Describe the proceedings of an assembly which followed.
- What knowledge of history seen in the prayer of the Levites?
- What the general character of the covenant which was made and sealed?
- Why the ritual of the law made so prominent?
- How was the population of Jerusalem increased?
- Why such a measure needed?
- Describe the dedication of the walls.
- What reforms effected by Nehemiah at his second visit to Jerusalem?
- What became of the priest who was chased away?
- What became of Nehemiah?
- At what date does this history close?
- To what date is the genealogy of the high priest extended?
MALACHI. i. 1-iv. 6.
1. The Time of This Prophecy?
(1.) After the temple service had been restored. i. 10; iii. 10.
(2.) In a time of unlawful marriages. ii. 11. 
(3). When the tithes had been withheld. iii. 8-10.
- All agree with Nehemiah, xiii. 1-31.
2. Its Design?
(1.) To support the reforms of Nehemiah. Neh. xiii. 1-31.
(2.) A Messianic prediction. iv. 1-6.