The city of Jerusalem was really big but not many people were living
and not many houses were built there, so Nehemiah helped with that.
God put it in Nehemiah’s heart to make a list of all God’s people and their families, who came
back to God’s special land from Babylon.
Nehemiah’s brother, named Hanani, was a man who listened to the Lord and obeyed Him really good
and Nehemiah put him in charge of the city.
Then all the people gathered themselves together in the street in front of the water gate, all
thinking the same thing: they asked Ezra to bring out the book of the law of Moses that the Lord had told to Israel.
Ezra stood on a step made of wood so all the people could see him. He read God’s words to the
people and they listened very carefully.
Men stood with him and explained the words to the people.
And all the people said, We believe it, with their hands held up high.
Then they bowed down with their faces to the ground.
So God’s word was read and explained rightly to the people.
Then the people started crying when they heard the words from the Lord God.
But Ezra said, Don’t cry or be sad, This day is very special to the Lord
Go eat the sweetest and fattest foods you love
and be very happy to God.
Then they found written in God’s book that the people were supposed to take leafy branches and
make little tents with them to live in
to remember that they lived in booths when the Lord God brought them out of
He is the one who took them from being slaves
to be His own people.
So the people went and took leafy branches from olive trees and pine trees and myrtle trees and
made little tents to live on their rooftops and in the street to live in.
And they listened to the words from God every day.