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Contradiction Between Ezra and Nehemiah

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Rabbi Moshe Leib Halberstadt

Sivan 8, 5781
Question
Recently I heard from Muslims that Ezra 2 and Nehemiah 7 contradict each other and that the Tanakh is corrupt and Judaism is nonsense. I have doubts about my faith because the numbers are different and the numbers don’t add up to what they are supposed to add up to. Is there any way that this can be resolved?
Answer
Dear David, When you have any question in Torah study, the first thing you should do is open the books and study them with the classical commentators. The seeming contradiction between Ezra 2 and Nehemiah 7 is discussed and explained at length by the Malbim and other commentators. In very short, some of the verses are referring to different people who came from different places and went to different destinations at different times. This is a wonderful opportunity for you to engage in learning our Holy Torah. Try to find a local orthodox Rabbi to learn this with you.
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