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What Did Nehemiah Do For Judaism?

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Chapter Summary

From as early as C. C. Torrey the account of Nehemiah in the so called Nehemiah Memoir has been judged by many scholars to be historically reliable. The account of Ezra on the other hand, has been regarded as far less reliable and some have gone so far as to suggest that Ezra is a literary creation. Ezra displays a piety which scholarship has come to associate with Judaism of a later period. While later writers ascribe an extremely important role to Ezra, earlier interpreters of traditions about the Persian period would appear to have placed more emphasis on Nehemiah. According to the Nehemiah Memoir, Nehemiah came to Yehud as a Persian appointee around the middle of the fifth century B.C.E. Ecclesiasticus is generally regarded as having been written in Jerusalem in the early part of the second century B.C.E. by a member of the Jerusalem elite.

Keywords: Ecclesiasticus; Judaism; Nehemiah memoir

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