## Question:

When I read Ezra and Nehemiah, I had some problem with the counting numbers recorded in both books. I believe the list of names in Ezra chapter 2 and Nehemiah chapter 7 are the same thing. But the number of singers and porters are different in these two books. While in Ezra 2:41-42 there were 128 singers and 139 porters, in Nehemiah 7:44-45 there were 148 singers and 138 porters. And in Ezra 2:65 there were singing men and women 200, but in Nehemiah 7:67 the number of singers were 245. Other numbers are the same, so what is wrong about these three counting?

Your help will be much appreciated. Thanks a lot.

Actually there are seventeen differences between Ezra 2 and Nehemiah 7:

Ezra 2 Nehemiah 7
Verse 5:
The sons of Arah, 775
Verse 10:
The sons of Arah, 652
Verse 6:
The sons of Pahath-moab, 2,812
Verse 11:
The sons of Pahath-moab, 2,818
Verse 8:
The sons of Zattu, 945
Verse 13:
The sons of Zattu, 845
Verse 10:
The sons of Bani, 642
Verse 15:
The sons of Binnui, 648
Verse 11:
The sons of Bebai, 623
Verse 16:
The sons of Babai, 628
Verse 12:
Verse 17:
Verse 13:
Verse 18:
Verse 14:
The sons of Bigvai, 2,056
Verse 19:
The sons of Bigvai, 2,067
Verse 15:
Verse 20:

Verse 17:
The sons of Bezai, 323

Verse 23:
The sons of Bezai, 324
Verse 28:
The men of Bethel and Ai, 223
Verse 32:
The men of Bethel and Ai, 123
Verse 33:
The sons of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, 725
Verse 37:
The sons of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, 721
Verse 35:
The sons of Senaah, 3,630
Verse 38:
The sons of Senaah, 3,930
Verse 41:
The singers, the sons of Asaph, 128
Verse 44:
The singers, the sons of Asaph, 148
Verse 42:
The sons of the gatekeepers, 139
Verse 45:
The sons of the gatekeepers, 138
Verses 59-60
Various names totalling 652
Verse 61-62:
Various names totalling 642
Verse 65:
Servants, 7,337 and singers, 200
Verse 67:
Servants, 7,337 and singers, 245

It might be possible that a few of the differences is due to errs in copying the numbers, but given the care of the Jewish scribes, it isn't reasonable that there were that many mistakes in one section.