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Nehemiah 6:2-4

Context
6:2 Sanballat and Geshem sent word to me saying, “Come on! Let’s set up a time to meet together at Kephirim 1  in the plain of Ono.” Now they intended to do me harm.

6:3 So I sent messengers to them saying, “I am engaged in 2  an important work, and I am unable to come down. Why should the work come to a halt when I leave it to come down to you?” 6:4 They contacted 3  me four times in this way, and I responded the same way each time. 4 

1 tn It is not entirely clear whether the Hebrew word כְּפִירִים (kÿfirim) is a place-name not mentioned elsewhere in the OT (as indicated in the present translation; so also NAB, NASB) or whether it means “in [one of] the villages” (so, e.g., NIV, NRSV, NLT; see BDB 499 s.v.; HALOT 493 s.v.). The LXX and Vulgate understand it in the latter sense. Some scholars connect this term with the identically spelled word כּפירים (“lions”) as a figurative description of princes or warriors (e.g., Pss 34:11; 35:17; 58:7; Jer 2:15; Ezek 32:2, 13; Nah 2:14; see HALOT 493 s.v.): “let us meet together with the leaders in the plain of Ono.”

2 tn Heb “[am] doing.”

3 tn Heb “sent to.”

4 tn Heb “and I answered them according to this word.”



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