With Nehemiah and Ezra we enter upon the era in which a new impulse gave to Jewish life and thought that form which became the characteristic orthodox Judaism.
It is the work of rebuilding and reorganization, of social and of religious reforms, which we encounter in the last pages of biblical history, and in the records of Ezra and Nehemiah we stand in Jerusalem in the very centre of epoch-making events.
With this it accords that in Nehemiah five generations of high priests are enumerated from Joshua (xii.
The tendency to make the exile an abrupt and complete change in life is based upon the theory underlying Chronicles - Nehemiah and is misleading (see Torrey, op. cit.
From the authentic report of his cup-bearer Nehemiah we see that he was a kind, good-natured, but rather weak monarch, and he was undoubtedly much under the baneful influence of his mother Amestris (for whose mischievous character cf.
Their insinuations that Nehemiah was seeking to be ruler and their representations to Artaxerxes would be enough to alarm the king (cf.
Seq.; probably the older form) is curiously indebted to material which seems to have belonged to the history of the work of Nehemiah (cf.
S That Joel wrote not only after the exile but after the work of Ezra and Nehemiah may be viewed as confirmed by the allusions to the walls of Jerusalem in ch.
Laws were 1 It is at least a coincidence that the prophet who took the part of Tobiah and Sanballat against Nehemiah (vi.
In the twentieth year of Artaxerxes (445 B.C.), Nehemiah the royal cup-bearer at Shushan (Susa, the royal winter palace) was visited by friends from Judah and was overcome with grief at the tidings of the miserable condition of Jerusalem and the pitiful state of the Judaean remnant which had escaped the captivity.