Those who signed the agreement
1 ◄This is a list/These are the names► of those who signed the agreement:
I, Nehemiah, the governor; and also Zedekiah.
2 The priests who signed it were:
Seraiah, Azariah, Jeremiah,
3 Pashhur, Amariah, Malkijah,
4 Hattush, Shebaniah, Malluch,
5 Harim, Meremoth, Obadiah,
6 Daniel, Ginnethon, Baruch,
7 Meshullam, Abijah, Mijamin,
8 Maaziah, Bilgai, and Shemaiah.
9 The other descendants of Levi who signed it were:
Jeshua the son of Azaniah, Binnui from the clan of Henadad, Kadmiel,
10 Shebaniah, Hodiah, Kelita, Pelaiah, Hanan,
11 Mica, Rehob, Hashabiah,
12 Zaccur, Sherebiah, Shebaniah,
13 Hodiah, Bani, and Beninu.
14 The Israeli leaders who signed it were:
Parosh, Pahath-Moab, Elam, Zattu, Bani,
15 Bunni, Azgad, Bebai,
16 Adonijah, Bigvai, Adin,
17 Ater, Hezekiah, Azzur,
18 Hodiah, Hashum, Bezai,
19 Hariph, Anathoth, Nebai,
20 Magpiash, Meshullam, Hezir,
21 Meshezabel, Zadok, Jaddua,
22 Pelatiah, Hanan, Anaiah,
23 Hoshea, Hananiah, Hasshub,
24 Hallohesh, Pilha, Shobek,
25 Rehum, Hashabnah, Maaseiah,
26 Ahiah, Hanan, Anan,
27 Malluch, Harim, and Baanah.
28 Then the rest of the people also made a solemn agreement. The people who did it included priests, temple gatekeepers, singers, and temple workers. They also included all the men from other countries who had separated themselves from the other foreigners living in Israel. These men, along with their wives, their sons and daughters who were old enough to understand what they were doing, were people who wanted to obey God's laws.
29 They all joined with their leaders in making this solemn agreement. They agreed to obey all the laws that God had given to Moses. They agreed to obey everything that Yahweh our God had commanded, and all his regulations and instructions. And this is what they promised to do:
30 “We will not allow our daughters to marry people who live in this land who do not worship Yahweh, and we will not allow our sons to marry them.
31 If people from other countries who live in this land bring us grain or other things to sell to us on Sabbath days or any other sacred day, we will not buy anything from them. And in every seventh year, we will not plant any crops, and we will ◄cancel all debts/declare that people will no longer have to pay back what they owe us►.
32 We also promise that every year we will pay ◄one-eighth of an ounce/4 grams► of silver for the work of taking care of the temple.
33 With that money they can buy these things: The sacred bread that is placed before God, the grain that is burned on the altar each day, the lambs that were completely burned on the altar, the sacred offerings for the Sabbath days and for celebrating each new moon and other festivals that God told us to celebrate, and other offerings that are dedicated to God, the animals to be sacrificed to atone for the sins of the Israeli people, and anything else that is needed for the work of taking care of the temple.
34 Each year the priests, the other descendants of Levi who help the priests, and the rest of us will ◄cast lots/throw marked stones► to determine for that year which clans will provide wood to burn on the altar to burn the sacrifices that are offered to Yahweh our God, in order to do what was written in the laws God gave to Moses.
35 We promise that each year each family will take to the temple an offering from the first grain that we harvest and from the first fruit that grows on our trees that year.
36 Also, we will take to the priests at the temple our firstborn sons and dedicate them to God. And we will also bring firstborn calves and lambs and baby goats to be offered as sacrifices. That is what is written in God's laws that we must do.
37 We will also take to the priests at the temple the flour made from the first grain that we harvest each year, and our other offerings of wine, olive oil, and fruit. We will also take to the descendants of Levi who help the priests the tithes/10% of the crops that we grow on our land, because they are the ones who collect the tithes in all the villages where we work/live.
38 The priests who are descendants of Aaron will be with the other descendants of Levi and supervise them when they collect the tithes. Then the descendants of Levi must take 10% of the things that people bring and put them in the storerooms in the temple.
39 The descendants of Levi and some of the other Israeli people must take 10% of the offerings of grain, wine, and olive oil to the storerooms where the various utensils that are used in the temple are kept. That is the place where the priests who are serving at that time, the temple guards, and those who sing in the temple choir live.
We promise that we will not neglect taking care of the temple of our God.”