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Ezra 1Amplified Bible (AMP)

Proclamation of Cyrus

Now in the [a]first year of [b]Cyrus king of Persia [that is, the first year he ruled Babylon], in order to fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah [the prophet], the Lord stirred up (put in motion) the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he sent a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying:

“Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, ‘The [c]Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and He has appointed me to build Him a house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever there is among you of all His people, may his God be with him! Let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah and rebuild the house of the Lord, the God of Israel; He is God who is in Jerusalem. In any place where a survivor (Jewish exile) may live, let the men (Gentiles) of that place support him with silver and gold, with goods and cattle, together with freewill offerings for the house of God in Jerusalem.’”

Holy Articles Restored

Then the heads of the fathers’ households of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and Levites, all those whose spirits God had stirred up, [d]arose to go up and rebuild the house of the Lord which is in Jerusalem. All those who were around them encouraged them with articles of silver, with gold, with goods, with cattle, and with valuable things, in addition to all that was given as a freewill offering. Also King Cyrus brought out the articles of the house of the Lord, which Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Jerusalem [when he captured that city] and had put in the house of his gods. And Cyrus, king of Persia, had Mithredath the treasurer bring them out, and he counted them out to [e]Sheshbazzar, the governor (leader) of Judah. And they counted: 30 dishes (basins) of gold, 1,000 dishes of silver, 29 duplicates; 10 30 [small] gold bowls, 410 [small] silver bowls of a second kind, and 1,000 other articles. 11 All the articles of gold and of silver totaled 5,400. All these Sheshbazzar [the governor] brought up with the exiles who went from Babylon up to Jerusalem.

Footnotes:

  1. Ezra 1:1 Cyrus the Great captured Babylon in Oct 539 b.c. This was about seventy years after the first Hebrew captives were taken to Babylon.
  2. Ezra 1:1 Cyrus the Great established the Persian Empire and ruled from 559-530 b.c. His kingdom extended from Turkey in the west to the Indus River in the east, covering most of Southwest Asia and much of Central Asia. He was a great soldier as well as a wise and benevolent king, whose respect for religious freedom led to the return of the Hebrew captives to Jerusalem. Ancient historians report that the tomb assumed to be his was visited by Alexander the Great (356-323 b.c.) when he conquered Persepolis in 330 b.c. The tomb still exists among the ruins of Pasargadae in modern Iran.
  3. Ezra 1:2 It is remarkable that Cyrus actually used God’s special name, the tetragrammaton YHWH (traditionally rendered “Lord”). Certainly Cyrus recognized the true God, but he probably considered Him as one of a number of existing gods, as was typical for a polytheist. For Cyrus God of heaven probably meant just that, along with God of Israel and the God who is in Jerusalem (v 3).
  4. Ezra 1:5 The Hebrew verb “to stand” or “arise” is often an instruction to get ready to fulfill a command, somewhat similar to the military command “attention.”
  5. Ezra 1:8 There is occasionally a debate over the identities of Sheshbazzar and Zerubbabel. Sheshbazzar was an older Jewish official who was appointed by Cyrus and served in Judah (5:24). Zerubbabel was a younger man who was recognized as a political leader among the Jews. He was the son of Shealtiel and an ancestor of Jesus (5:2; Matt 1:12, 13).
Amplified Bible (AMP)

Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

Ezra 1New International Version (NIV)

Cyrus Helps the Exiles to Return

In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the Lord spoken by Jeremiah, the Lord moved the heart of Cyrus king of Persia to make a proclamation throughout his realm and also to put it in writing:

“This is what Cyrus king of Persia says:

“‘The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and he has appointed me to build a temple for him at Jerusalem in Judah. Any of his people among you may go up to Jerusalem in Judah and build the temple of the Lord, the God of Israel, the God who is in Jerusalem, and may their God be with them. And in any locality where survivors may now be living, the people are to provide them with silver and gold, with goods and livestock, and with freewill offerings for the temple of God in Jerusalem.’”

Then the family heads of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and Levites—everyone whose heart God had moved—prepared to go up and build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem. All their neighbors assisted them with articles of silver and gold, with goods and livestock, and with valuable gifts, in addition to all the freewill offerings.

Moreover, King Cyrus brought out the articles belonging to the temple of the Lord, which Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Jerusalem and had placed in the temple of his god.[a] Cyrus king of Persia had them brought by Mithredath the treasurer, who counted them out to Sheshbazzar the prince of Judah.

This was the inventory:

gold dishes30
silver dishes1,000
silver pans[b]29
10 gold bowls30
matching silver bowls410
other articles1,000

11 In all, there were 5,400 articles of gold and of silver. Sheshbazzar brought all these along with the exiles when they came up from Babylon to Jerusalem.

Footnotes:

  1. Ezra 1:7 Or gods
  2. Ezra 1:9 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
New International Version (NIV)

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