Author: Possibly Ezra and Nehemiah

Period: c.445-432 B.C.

Title: See comments in summary of the book of Ezra. The name Nehemiah means “The Lord comforts.”

Summary: The book of Nehemiah begins with Nehemiah returning from Babylon as Governor of Jerusalem. He plans and oversees the rebuilding of the city wall despite discouraging opposition and disunity within the Jewish population. The wall is completed and more exiles return and are registered as Jewish citizens. Nehemiah’s dedication to God drives him to make several religious reforms. A public reading of the Law and arrangements for worship are among these reforms.


Nehemiah’s arrival in Jerusalem: Chapter 1:1 – 2:20

  • Tragic news from Jerusalem and Nehemiah’s prayer: 1:1-11
  • The granting of Nehemiah’s request: 2:1-8
  • Nehemiah’s survey of the walls and his report: 2:9-20

The building of the wall: Chapter 3:1 – 7:4

  • The workmen and their tasks: 3:1-32
  • The opposition of enemies: 4:1-23
  • Reforms of Nehemiah as governor: 5:1-19
  • The wall finished despite intrigues: 6:1- 7:4

Civil and religious reforms in Jerusalem: Chapter 7:5 -10:39

  • List of Jews who returned with Zerubbabel: 7:5-73
  • The reading and observance of God’s Law: 8:1-18
  • A public confession and covenant: 9:1-10:39

Lists of inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem: Chapter 11:1 – 12:26

Dedication of walls and organization of temple service: Chapter 12:27-47

Nehemiah’s final reforms: Chapter 13:1-31