11:2 dwell at Jerusalem. With the walls completed and temple services fully operational, it was necessary to increase the internal population of Jerusalem in order to make the city function effectively. In addition to the leaders and the Nethinims, it was desired that ten percent of the Israelites live there. Some volunteered; others were selected by lot (Nehemiah 11:1).
11:3 dwelt in Jerusalem. The list of names in Nehemiah 11:3-19 corresponds in general to the list of returnees in I Chronicles 9:2-17. Probably these were the organized groups and their leaders when Nehemiah arrived at Jerusalem.
11:11 Seraiah. Listed here as “the ruler of the house of God,” Seraiah had been the first of the twenty-one priests (Nehemiah 10:2-8) who signed and sealed Nehemiah’s covenant.
11:21 Nethinims. The Nethinim (meaning “those appointed”) are frequently mentioned in Ezra and Nehemiah, and seem to have been servants assigned to the more menial tasks around the temple and city. There were possibly descendants of the Gibeonites, slaves assigned by Joshua to be perpetual “hewers of wood and drawers of water for the congregation, and for the altar of the LORD” (Joshua 9:27). Nevertheless, they dwelt in the Ophel section of Jerusalem and were, by this time, at least, considered full participants in the faith of the nation.
11:25 Kirjath-arba. This was another name for Hebron (Genesis 23:2).