Then Nehemiah the governor, 1 Ezra the priestly scribe, 2 and the Levites who were imparting understanding to the people said to all of them, 3 “This day is holy to the LORD your God. Do not mourn or weep.” For all the people had been weeping when they heard the words of the law.
Once the satraps, prefects, governors, and ministers of the king had gathered around, they saw that those men were physically 1 unharmed by the fire. 2 The hair of their heads was not singed, nor were their trousers damaged. Not even the smell of fire was to be found on them!
To all the supervisors of the kingdom, the prefects, satraps, counselors, and governors it seemed like a good idea for a royal edict to be issued and an interdict to be enforced. For the next thirty days anyone who prays 1 to any god or human other than you, O king, should be thrown into a den of lions.
For when you offer blind animals as a sacrifice, is that not wrong? And when you offer the lame and sick, 1 is that not wrong as well? Indeed, try offering them 2 to your governor! Will he be pleased with you 3 or show you favor?” asks the Lord who rules over all.
Geber son of Uri was in charge of the land of Gilead (the territory which had once belonged to King Sihon of the Amorites and to King Og of Bashan). He was sole governor of the area.
So Ahab summoned Obadiah, who supervised the palace. (Now Obadiah was a very loyal follower of the Lord. 1
He summoned 1 the officers of the units of hundreds, the nobles, the rulers of the people, and all the people of land, and he then led the king down from the Lord’s temple. They entered the royal palace through the Upper Gate and seated the king on the royal throne.
In the eighteenth year of his reign, he continued his policy of purifying the land and the temple. 1 He sent Shaphan son of Azaliah, Maaseiah the city official, and Joah son of Joahaz the secretary to repair the temple of the Lord his God.
He brought all the priests from the cities of Judah and ruined 1 the high places where the priests had offered sacrifices, from Geba to Beer Sheba. 2 He tore down the high place of the goat idols 3 situated at the entrance of the gate of Joshua, the city official, on the left side of the city gate.
All of the officers of the Judahite army 1 and their troops heard that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah to govern. So they came to Gedaliah at Mizpah. The officers who came were Ishmael son of Nethaniah, Johanan son of Kareah, Seraiah son of Tanhumeth the Netophathite, and Jaazaniah son of the Maacathite.
Now some of the officers of the Judean army and their troops had been hiding in the countryside. They heard that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah son of Ahikam to govern 1 the country. They also heard that he had been put in charge over the men, women, and children from the poorer classes of the land who had not been carried off into exile in Babylon. 2
Solomon had twelve district governors appointed throughout Israel who acquired supplies for the king and his palace. Each was responsible for one month in the year.
The servants of the district governors led the march. When Ben Hadad sent messengers, they reported back to him, “Men are marching out of Samaria.” 1