King? What king?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by drfuss, Jan 13, 2007.

  1. drfuss

    drfuss
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    Nehemiah 11: 24 - "Pethatiah son of Meshezabel, one of the desendents of Zerah son of Judah, was the king's agent in all affairs relating to the people."

    I have questions about this verse.

    Judah had no king during this time. So is Nehemiah talking about the king of Persia? The context in the verses before and after this verse do not seem to suggest that to me.

    Is this a traditional job that someone had when Judah had a king and is listed here just as a description of the job?

    The job is listed as "the king's agent in all affairs relating to the people". How was this job different from the governor's job? Perhaps he was the governor's assistant.

    Am I missing something?
     
  2. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O.
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    I read this to mean the king of Persia. The king's "agent". This was a government official representing the king of Persia looking over the daily activities of the Jews.

    That's my thinking.
     
  3. Lagardo

    Lagardo
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    That would be my take too. Nehemiah would have referred to the King of Persia as his king. It was and is common for foreign governments who rule a land to appoint someone over a region.
     
  4. Jim1999

    Jim1999
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    Look beyond the USA governmental system. Take Canada as an example. We have elected rulers. The Prime Minister of Canada, but we also have the Governor General of Canada. This person is selected to represent the British monarch. All matters adopted by the parliament must be approved by the Monarch before passing into law.... Such is the case in this passage...he goes beyond the governor's responsibilities and duties.

    Others have correctly alluded to the King of Persia, which is the traditional understanding.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  5. donnA

    donnA
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    Easton's Bible Dictionary

    By this time period Israelites had been in captivity in Babylon for soemthing like 130 years. They were not slaves per say, many held high offices, and many chose not to return to Israel because they had no actual ties there, and had lives in the land where they were born. Pethahiah apparently was a Jew who held a relatively high government office in Babylon, and was sent as the king's representative.
     

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