Cyrus’ Proclamation

(A)Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he (B)sent a proclamation throughout his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying:

“This is what Cyrus king of Persia says: ‘The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and (C)He has appointed me to rebuild for Him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever there is among you of all His people, may his God be with him! [a]Go up to Jerusalem which is in Judah and rebuild the house of the Lord, the God of Israel; (D)He is the God who is in Jerusalem. And every survivor, at whatever place he may [b]live, the people of [c]that place are to support him with silver and gold, with equipment and cattle, together with a [d]voluntary offering for the house of God which is in Jerusalem.’”

Holy Vessels Restored

Then the heads of fathers’ households of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and the Levites rose up, (E)everyone whose spirit God had stirred to go up to rebuild the house of the Lord which is in Jerusalem. And all of those around them [e](F)encouraged them with articles of silver, with gold, with equipment, cattle, and with valuables, aside from everything that was given as a [f]voluntary offering. (G)Also King Cyrus brought out the articles of the house of the Lord, (H)which Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Jerusalem and put in the house of his gods; and Cyrus, king of Persia, had them brought out by the hand of Mithredath the treasurer, and he counted them out to (I)Sheshbazzar, the leader of Judah. Now this was their number: thirty (J)gold dishes, a thousand silver dishes, twenty nine [g]duplicates; 10 thirty gold bowls, 410 silver bowls of a second kind, and a thousand other articles. 11 All the articles of gold and silver totaled 5,400. Sheshbazzar brought them all up with the exiles who went up from Babylon to Jerusalem.

Number of Those Returning

(K)Now these are the [h]people of the province who came up out of the captivity of the exiles whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had taken into exile to Babylon, and they returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to his city. [i]These came with Zerubbabel, Jeshua, Nehemiah, [j]Seraiah, [k]Reelaiah, Mordecai, Bilshan, [l]Mispar, Bigvai, [m]Rehum, and Baanah.

This is the number of the men of the people of Israel: the sons of Parosh, 2,172; the sons of Shephatiah, 372; the sons of (L)Arah, 775; the sons of (M)Pahath-moab of the sons of Jeshua and Joab, 2,812; the sons of Elam, 1,254; the sons of Zattu, 945; the sons of Zaccai, 760; 10 the sons of [n]Bani, 642; 11 the sons of Bebai, 623; 12 the sons of Azgad, 1,222; 13 the sons of (N)Adonikam, 666; 14 the sons of Bigvai, 2,056; 15 the sons of Adin, 454; 16 the sons of Ater, of Hezekiah, 98; 17 the sons of Bezai, 323; 18 the sons of [o]Jorah, 112; 19 the sons of Hashum, 223; 20 the sons of [p]Gibbar, 95; 21 the [q]men of (O)Bethlehem, 123; 22 the men of Netophah, 56; 23 the men of Anathoth, 128; 24 the sons of [r]Azmaveth, 42; 25 the sons of [s]Kiriath-arim, Chephirah, and Beeroth, 743; 26 the sons of (P)Ramah and Geba, 621; 27 the men of Michmas, 122; 28 the men of Bethel and Ai, 223; 29 the sons of Nebo, 52; 30 the sons of Magbish, 156; 31 the sons of the other Elam, 1,254; 32 the sons of Harim, 320; 33 the sons of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, 725; 34 the [t]men of (Q)Jericho, 345; 35 the sons of Senaah, 3,630.

Priests Returning

36 (R)The priests: the sons of Jedaiah of the house of Jeshua, 973; 37 the sons of (S)Immer, 1,052; 38 (T)the sons of Pashhur, 1,247; 39 the sons of (U)Harim, 1,017.

Levites Returning

40 The Levites: the sons of Jeshua and Kadmiel, of the sons of [u]Hodaviah, 74. 41 The singers: the sons of Asaph, 128. 42 The sons of the gatekeepers: the sons of Shallum, the sons of Ater, the sons of Talmon, the sons of Akkub, the sons of Hatita, and the sons of Shobai, 139 in all.

43 The (V)temple servants: the sons of Ziha, the sons of Hasupha, the sons of Tabbaoth, 44 the sons of Keros, the sons of [v]Siaha, the sons of Padon, 45 the sons of Lebanah, the sons of Hagabah, the sons of Akkub, 46 the sons of Hagab, the sons of Shalmai, the sons of Hanan, 47 the sons of Giddel, the sons of Gahar, the sons of Reaiah, 48 the sons of Rezin, the sons of Nekoda, the sons of Gazzam, 49 the sons of Uzza, the sons of Paseah, the sons of Besai, 50 the sons of Asnah, the sons of Meunim, the sons of [w]Nephisim, 51 the sons of Bakbuk, the sons of Hakupha, the sons of Harhur, 52 the sons of [x]Bazluth, the sons of Mehida, the sons of Harsha, 53 the sons of Barkos, the sons of Sisera, the sons of Temah, 54 the sons of Neziah, and the sons of Hatipha.

55 The sons of (W)Solomon’s servants: the sons of Sotai, the sons of [y]Hassophereth, the sons of [z]Peruda, 56 the sons of Jaalah, the sons of Darkon, the sons of Giddel, 57 the sons of Shephatiah, the sons of Hattil, the sons of Pochereth-hazzebaim, and the sons of [aa]Ami.

58 All the (X)temple servants and the sons of (Y)Solomon’s servants totaled 392.

59 Now these were the ones who came up from Tel-melah, Tel-harsha, Cherub, [ab]Addan, and Immer, but they were not able to [ac]provide evidence of their fathers’ households and their [ad]descendants, whether they were of Israel: 60 the sons of Delaiah, the sons of Tobiah, and the sons of Nekoda, 652.

Priests Removed

61 Of the sons of the priests: the sons of Hobaiah, the sons of Hakkoz, the sons of (Z)Barzillai, who took a wife from the daughters of Barzillai the Gileadite, and he was called by their name. 62 These searched among their genealogical registration but they could not be located; (AA)so they were considered defiled and excluded from the priesthood. 63 The [ae]governor said to them (AB)that they were not to eat from the most holy things until a priest stood up with (AC)Urim and Thummim.

64 The whole assembly together totaled 42,360, 65 besides their male and female slaves [af]who totaled 7,337; and they had two hundred (AD)singing men and women. 66 Their horses numbered 736; their mules, 245; 67 their camels, 435; their donkeys, 6,720.

68 Some of the heads of fathers’ households, when they arrived at the house of the Lord which is in Jerusalem, offered willingly for the house of God to erect it on its site. 69 According to their ability they gave (AE)to the treasury for the work sixty-one thousand gold drachmas, five thousand silver minas, and a hundred priestly [ag]garments.

70 (AF)Now the priests and the Levites, some of the people, the singers, the gatekeepers, and the temple servants lived in their cities, and all Israel in their cities.

Altar and Sacrifices Restored

Now when the seventh month came, and (AG)the sons of Israel were in the cities, the people gathered together as one person to Jerusalem. Then (AH)Jeshua the son of Jozadak and his brothers the priests, and (AI)Zerubbabel the son (AJ)of Shealtiel and his brothers, rose up and (AK)built the altar of the God of Israel to offer burnt offerings on it, (AL)as it is written in the Law of Moses, the man of God. So they set up the altar on its foundation, because [ah](AM)they were terrified of the peoples of the lands; and they (AN)offered burnt offerings on it to the Lord, burnt offerings morning and evening. They also celebrated the (AO)Feast of [ai]Booths, (AP)as it is written, and offered [aj]the prescribed number of burnt offerings daily, (AQ)according to the ordinance, [ak]as each day required; and afterward there was a (AR)continual burnt offering, also (AS)for the new moons and (AT)for all the appointed festivals of the Lord that were consecrated, and from everyone who offered a [al]voluntary offering to the Lord. From the first day of the seventh month they began to offer burnt offerings to the Lord, but the foundation of the temple of the Lord had not been laid. Then they gave money to the masons and carpenters, and (AU)food, drink, and oil to the Sidonians and the Tyrians (AV)to bring cedar wood from Lebanon to the sea at (AW)Joppa, according to the permission they had [am]from (AX)Cyrus king of Persia.

Temple Restoration Begun

Now in the second year of their coming to the house of God at Jerusalem, in the second month, (AY)Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and the rest of their brothers the priests and the Levites, and all who came from the captivity to Jerusalem, began the work and (AZ)appointed the Levites who were twenty years old and upward to oversee the work of the house of the Lord. Then (BA)Jeshua with his sons and brothers stood united with Kadmiel and his sons, the sons of [an]Judah and the sons of Henadad with their sons and brothers the Levites, to oversee the workmen in the temple of God.

10 Now when the builders had (BB)laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, [ao]the priests stood in their apparel with trumpets, and the Levites, the sons of Asaph, with cymbals, to praise the Lord (BC)according to the [ap]directions of King David of Israel. 11 And (BD)they sang, praising and giving thanks to the Lord, saying, “(BE)For He is good, for His favor is upon Israel forever.” And all the people shouted with a great shout of joy when they praised the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid. 12 Yet many of the priests and Levites and heads of fathers’ households, (BF)the old men who had seen the first [aq]temple, wept with a loud voice when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, while many shouted aloud for joy, 13 so that the people could not distinguish the sound of the shout of joy from the sound of the weeping of the people, because the people were shouting with a loud shout, and the sound was heard far away.

Enemies Hinder the Work

Now when (BG)the enemies of Judah and Benjamin heard that (BH)the people of the exile were building a temple to the Lord God of Israel, they approached Zerubbabel and the heads of fathers’ households, and said to them, “Let us build with you, for like you, we seek your God; (BI)and we have been sacrificing to Him since the days of (BJ)Esarhaddon king of Assyria, who brought us up here.” But Zerubbabel and Jeshua and the rest of the heads of fathers’ households of Israel said to them, “(BK)You have nothing in common with us in building a house to our God; but we ourselves will together build for the Lord God of Israel, (BL)just as King Cyrus, the king of Persia, has commanded us.”

Then (BM)the people of the land [ar]discouraged the people of Judah, and frightened them from building, and bribed advisers against them to frustrate their advice all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia.

Now in the reign of [as](BN)Ahasuerus, in the beginning of his reign, they wrote an accusation against the inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem.

And in the days of [at]Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of his colleagues wrote to Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the [au]text of the letter was written in Aramaic and translated (BO)from Aramaic.

The Letter to King Artaxerxes

[av]Rehum the commander and Shimshai the scribe wrote a letter against Jerusalem to King Artaxerxes, as follows— [aw]Rehum the commander, Shimshai the scribe, and (BP)the rest of their colleagues, the judges and (BQ)the lesser governors, the officials, the secretaries, the men of Erech, the Babylonians, the men of Susa, that is, the Elamites, 10 and the rest of the nations which the great and honorable [ax]Osnappar deported and settled in the city of Samaria, and in the rest of the region beyond the Euphrates River. (BR)And now 11 this is a copy of the letter which they sent to him:

“To King Artaxerxes: Your servants, the men of the region beyond the Euphrates River; and now 12 let it be known to the king that the Jews who came up from you have come to us at Jerusalem; they are rebuilding (BS)the rebellious and evil city and (BT)are finishing the walls and repairing the foundations. 13 Now let it be known to the king, that if that city is rebuilt and the walls are finished, (BU)they will not pay tribute, custom tax, or toll, and it will [ay]be detrimental to the revenue of the kings. 14 Now because we [az]are in the service of the palace, and it is not fitting for us to see the king’s shame, for this reason we have sent word and informed the king, 15 so that a search may be conducted in the record books of your fathers. And you will discover in the record books and learn that that city is a rebellious city and detrimental to kings and provinces, and that they have revolted within it in past days; for this reason that city was laid waste. 16 We are informing the king that if that city is rebuilt and the walls finished, then as a result of this you will have no possession in the province beyond the Euphrates River.”

The King Replies and Work Stops

17 Then the king sent a response to Rehum the commander, Shimshai the scribe, and to the rest of their colleagues who live in Samaria and in the rest of the provinces beyond the Euphrates River: “Peace. And now, 18 the document which you sent to us has been [ba](BV)translated and read before me. 19 And a decree has been [bb]issued by me, and a search has been conducted and it has been discovered that that city has risen up against the kings in past days, and that rebellion and revolt have been perpetrated in it, 20 (BW)that mighty kings have [bc]ruled over Jerusalem, governing all the provinces (BX)beyond the Euphrates River, and that (BY)tribute, custom tax, and toll were paid to them. 21 Now issue a decree to make those men stop work, so that this city will not be rebuilt until a decree is issued by me. 22 And beware of being negligent in carrying out this matter; why should there be great damage, to the detriment of the kings?”

23 Then as soon as the copy of King Artaxerxes’ decree was read before Rehum and Shimshai the scribe and their colleagues, they went in a hurry to Jerusalem to the Jews and stopped them by military force.

24 Then work on the house of God in Jerusalem was discontinued, and it was stopped until the second year of the reign of Darius king of Persia.

Temple Work Resumed

When the prophets, (BZ)Haggai the prophet and (CA)Zechariah the son of Iddo, prophesied to the Jews who were in Judah and Jerusalem in the name of the God of Israel, who was over them, then (CB)Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel and Jeshua the son of Jozadak rose up and began to rebuild the house of God which is in Jerusalem; and (CC)the prophets of God were with them, supporting them.

At that time (CD)Tattenai, the governor of the province beyond the Euphrates River, and Shethar-bozenai and their colleagues came to them and spoke to them as follows: “(CE)Who issued you a decree to rebuild this [bd]temple and to finish this structure?” (CF)Then we told them accordingly what the names of the men were who were reconstructing this building. But (CG)the eye of their God was on the elders of the Jews, and they did not stop them until the report could reach Darius, and then the decree concerning it could be sent back.

Enemies Write to Darius

This is the copy of the letter that (CH)Tattenai, the governor of the province beyond the Euphrates River, and Shethar-bozenai and his colleagues (CI)the officials, who were beyond the River, sent to Darius the king. They sent the report to him in which it was written as follows: “To Darius the king, all peace. May it be known to the king that we have gone to the province of Judah, to the house of the great God which is being built with large stones, and [be]beams are being laid in the walls; and this work is being performed with great care and is succeeding in their hands. Then we asked those elders and said to them as follows: ‘Who issued you a decree to rebuild this temple and to finish this structure?’ 10 We also asked them their names so as to inform you, in order that we might write down the names of the men who were [bf]in charge. 11 So they [bg]answered us as follows, saying, ‘We are the servants of the God of heaven and earth, and are rebuilding the temple that was built many years ago, (CJ)which a great king of Israel built and finished. 12 But (CK)because our fathers provoked the God of heaven to wrath, (CL)He handed them over to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the Chaldean, who destroyed this temple and deported the people to Babylon. 13 However, (CM)in the first year of Cyrus king of Babylon, King Cyrus (CN)issued a decree to rebuild this house of God. 14 Also (CO)the gold and silver utensils of the house of God which Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple in Jerusalem and brought them to the temple of Babylon, King Cyrus took them from the temple of Babylon and they were given to one (CP)whose name was Sheshbazzar, whom he had appointed governor. 15 And he said to him, “Take these utensils, go and deposit them in the temple in Jerusalem, and have the house of God rebuilt in its place.” 16 Then that Sheshbazzar came and (CQ)laid the foundations of the house of God in Jerusalem; and from then until now it has been under construction and it is (CR)not yet completed.’ 17 And now, if it pleases the king, (CS)let a search be conducted in the king’s treasure house, which is there in Babylon, as to whether a decree was issued by King Cyrus to rebuild this house of God in Jerusalem; and let the king send to us his decision concerning this matter.”

Darius Finds Cyrus’ Decree

Then King Darius issued a decree, and a (CT)search was conducted in the [bh]archives, where the treasures were stored in Babylon. And in [bi]Ecbatana, in the fortress which is (CU)in the province of Media, a scroll was found; and the following was written in it: “Memorandum— (CV)In the first year of King Cyrus, Cyrus the king issued a decree: ‘Concerning the house of God in Jerusalem, let the [bj]temple, the place where sacrifices are offered, be rebuilt, and let [bk]its foundations be repaired, its height being [bl]sixty cubits and its width sixty cubits, (CW)with three layers of large stones and [bm]one layer of timber. And the cost is to be paid from the [bn]royal treasury. Also (CX)the gold and silver utensils of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar took from the temple in Jerusalem and brought to Babylon, are to be returned and [bo]brought to their places in the temple in Jerusalem; and you shall put them in the house of God.’

“Now as for you, (CY)Tattenai, governor of the province beyond the Euphrates River, Shethar-bozenai, and [bp]your colleagues, the officials of the provinces beyond the River, [bq]stay away from there. Leave that work on the house of God alone; let the governor of the Jews and the elders of the Jews rebuild that house of God on its site. Furthermore, (CZ)I issue a decree concerning what you are to do for these elders of Judah in the rebuilding of that house of God: the full cost is to be paid to those people from the royal treasury out of the taxes of the provinces beyond the Euphrates River, and that without interruption. And whatever is needed, bulls, rams, and lambs for burnt offerings to the God of heaven, and wheat, salt, wine, and anointing oil, as the priests in Jerusalem order, it is to be given to them daily without fail, 10 so that they may offer acceptable sacrifices to the God of heaven and (DA)pray for the lives of the king and his sons. 11 And I issued a decree that (DB)any person who violates this decree, a timber shall be pulled out of his house and he shall be impaled on it; and (DC)his house shall be turned into a refuse heap on account of this. 12 May the God who (DD)has caused His name to dwell there overthrow any king or people who [br]attempts to [bs]change it, so as to destroy that house of God in Jerusalem. I, Darius, have issued this decree; it is to be carried out with all diligence!”

The Temple Completed and Dedicated

13 Then (DE)Tattenai, the governor of the province beyond the Euphrates River, Shethar-bozenai, and their colleagues carried out the decree with all diligence, just as King Darius had [bt]ordered. 14 And (DF)the elders of the Jews [bu]were successful in building through the prophecy of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo. And [bv]they finished building following the command of the God of Israel and the decree (DG)of Cyrus, (DH)Darius, and (DI)Artaxerxes king of Persia. 15 Now this [bw]temple was completed [bx]on the third day of the (DJ)month Adar; it was the sixth year of the reign of King Darius.

16 And the sons of Israel, the priests, the Levites, and the rest of the [by]exiles, (DK)celebrated the dedication of this house of God with joy. 17 They offered for the dedication of this temple of God a hundred bulls, two hundred rams, four hundred lambs, and as a sin offering for all Israel (DL)twelve male goats, corresponding to the number of the tribes of Israel. 18 Then they appointed the priests to (DM)their divisions and the Levites in (DN)their sections for the service of God in Jerusalem, (DO)as it is written in the Book of Moses.

The Passover Held

19 (DP)The exiles held the Passover on (DQ)the fourteenth of the first month. 20 (DR)For the priests and the Levites had purified themselves together; all of them were pure. Then (DS)they slaughtered the Passover lambs for all the exiles, both for their brothers the priests and for themselves. 21 And the sons of Israel who returned from exile and (DT)all those who had separated themselves from (DU)the impurity of the nations of the land to join them, to seek the Lord God of Israel, ate the Passover. 22 And (DV)they held the Feast of Unleavened Bread for seven days with joy, because the Lord had made them happy, and (DW)had turned the heart of (DX)the king of Assyria toward them to [bz]encourage them in the work of the house of God, the God of Israel.

Ezra Journeys from Babylon to Jerusalem

(DY)Now after these things, in the reign of (DZ)Artaxerxes king of Persia, Ezra went up to Jerusalem; Ezra was the son of Seraiah, son of Azariah, son of Hilkiah, son of Shallum, son of Zadok, son of Ahitub, son of Amariah, son of Azariah, son of Meraioth, son of Zerahiah, son of Uzzi, son of Bukki, son of Abishua, son of Phinehas, son of Eleazar, son of Aaron the chief priest. So this Ezra went up from Babylon, and he was a (EA)scribe skilled in the Law of Moses, which the Lord God of Israel had given; and the king granted him all [ca]he requested (EB)because the hand of the Lord his God was upon him. (EC)Some of the sons of Israel and some of the priests, the Levites, the singers, the gatekeepers, and the temple servants went up to Jerusalem in the seventh year of King Artaxerxes.

And he came to Jerusalem in the fifth month, which was in the seventh year of the king. For on the first day of the first month he began to go up from Babylon; and on the first of the fifth month he came to Jerusalem, (ED)because the good hand of his God was upon him. 10 For Ezra had [cb]firmly resolved to study the Law of the Lord and to practice it, and (EE)to teach His statutes and ordinances in Israel.

King’s Decree on Behalf of Ezra

11 Now this is the copy of the letter which King Artaxerxes gave to Ezra the priest, the scribe, [cc]learned in the words of the commandments of the Lord and His statutes to Israel: 12 [cd]Artaxerxes, (EF)king of kings, to Ezra the priest, the scribe of the Law of the God of heaven, [ce]perfect peace. And now 13 (EG)I have issued a decree that any of the people of Israel and their priests and the Levites in my kingdom who are willing to go to Jerusalem, may go with you. 14 Since you are sent [cf]on the part of the king and his (EH)seven advisers to inquire about Judah and Jerusalem according to the Law of your God which is in your hand, 15 and to bring the silver and gold, which the king and his advisers have voluntarily given to the God of Israel, (EI)whose dwelling is in Jerusalem, 16 with (EJ)all the silver and gold which you find in the entire province of Babylon, along (EK)with the [cg]voluntary offering of the people and of the priests, who (EL)offered willingly for the house of their God which is in Jerusalem; 17 with this money, therefore, you shall diligently buy bulls, rams, and lambs, (EM)with their grain offerings and their drink offerings, and (EN)offer them on the altar of the house of your God which is in Jerusalem. 18 And whatever seems good to you and your brothers to do with the rest of the silver and gold, you may do according to the will of your God. 19 Also the utensils which are given to you for the service of the house of your God, deliver in full before the God of Jerusalem. 20 And the rest of the needs of the house of your God, for which it may be incumbent upon you to provide, (EO)provide for them from the royal treasury.

21 “I myself, King Artaxerxes, issue a decree to all the treasurers who are in the provinces beyond the Euphrates River, that whatever Ezra the priest, (EP)the scribe of the Law of the God of heaven, may require of you, it shall be done diligently, 22 up to [ch]a hundred talents of silver, [ci]a hundred kors of wheat, [cj]a hundred baths of wine, [ck]a hundred baths of anointing oil, and salt [cl]as needed. 23 Whatever is [cm]commanded by the God of heaven, it shall be done with zeal for the house of the God of heaven, (EQ)so that there will not be wrath against the kingdom of the king and his sons. 24 We also inform you that (ER)it is not allowed to impose tax, tribute, or toll (ES)on any of the priests, Levites, singers, doorkeepers, temple servants, or other servants of this house of God.

25 “And you, Ezra, according to the wisdom of your God which is in your hand, (ET)appoint magistrates and judges so that they may judge all the people who are in the province beyond the Euphrates River, that is, all those who know the laws of your God; and you may (EU)teach anyone who is ignorant of them. 26 And (EV)whoever does not comply with the Law of your God and the law of the king, judgment is to be executed upon him strictly, whether for death or for banishment, or for [cn]confiscation of property or for imprisonment.”

The King’s Kindness

27 Blessed be the Lord, the God of our fathers, (EW)who has put such a thing as this in the king’s heart, to glorify the house of the Lord which is in Jerusalem, 28 and (EX)has extended favor to me before the king and his counselors and before all the king’s mighty officials. So I was strengthened according to (EY)the hand of the Lord my God that was upon me, and I gathered [co]leading men from Israel to go up with me.

People Who Went with Ezra

Now these are the heads of their fathers’ households and the genealogical enrollment of those who went up with me from Babylon in the reign of King Artaxerxes: of the sons of Phinehas, Gershom; of the sons of Ithamar, Daniel; of the sons of David, (EZ)Hattush; of the sons of Shecaniah who was of the sons of (FA)Parosh, Zechariah, and with him 150 males who were in the genealogical list; of the sons of Pahath-moab, Eliehoenai the son of Zerahiah and two hundred males with him; of the sons of [cp]Zattu, Shecaniah, the son of Jahaziel and three hundred males with him; and of the sons of (FB)Adin, Ebed the son of Jonathan and fifty males with him; and of the sons of Elam, Jeshaiah the son of Athaliah and seventy males with him; and of the sons of Shephatiah, Zebadiah the son of Michael and eighty males with him; of the sons of Joab, Obadiah the son of Jehiel and 218 males with him; 10 and of the sons of [cq]Bani, Shelomith, the son of Josiphiah and 160 males with him; 11 and of the sons of Bebai, Zechariah the son of Bebai and twenty-eight males with him; 12 and of the sons of Azgad, Johanan the son of Hakkatan and 110 males with him; 13 and of the sons of Adonikam, the last ones, these being their names: Eliphelet, [cr]Jeiel, and Shemaiah, and sixty males with them; 14 and of the sons of Bigvai, Uthai and [cs]Zabbud, and seventy males with [ct]them.

Ezra Sends for Levites

15 Now I assembled them at (FC)the river that runs to Ahava, where we camped for three days; and when I paid close attention to the people and the priests, I (FD)did not find any Levites there. 16 So I sent for Eliezer, Ariel, Shemaiah, Elnathan, Jarib, Elnathan, Nathan, Zechariah, and Meshullam, [cu]leading men, and for Joiarib and Elnathan, teachers. 17 And I sent them to Iddo the [cv]leading man at the place called Casiphia; and I [cw]told them what to say to [cx]Iddo and his brothers, (FE)the temple servants at the place Casiphia, that is, to bring ministers to us for the house of our God. 18 (FF)And as the good hand of our God was upon us, they brought us a (FG)man of insight from the sons of Mahli, the son of Levi, the son of Israel, namely Sherebiah, and his sons and brothers, eighteen men; 19 and Hashabiah and [cy]Jeshaiah of the sons of Merari, with his brothers and their sons, twenty men; 20 and 220 of (FH)the temple servants, whom David and the officials had provided for the service of the Levites, all of them designated by name.

Protection of God Invoked

21 Then I proclaimed (FI)a fast there at (FJ)the river of Ahava, to (FK)humble ourselves before our God, to seek from Him a [cz]safe journey for us, our little ones, and all our possessions. 22 For I was ashamed to request from the king troops and horsemen to [da]protect us from the enemy on the way, because we had said to the king, “(FL)The hand of our God is [db]favorably disposed to all who seek Him, but (FM)His power and His anger are against all those who (FN)abandon Him.” 23 So we fasted and sought our God concerning this matter, and He [dc](FO)listened to our pleading.

24 Then I selected twelve of the leading priests: (FP)Sherebiah, Hashabiah, and with them ten of their brothers; 25 and I (FQ)weighed out to them (FR)the silver, the gold, and the utensils, the offering for the house of our God which the king, (FS)his counselors, his officials, and all Israel who were present there had contributed. 26 (FT)So I weighed into their hands [dd]650 talents of silver, and silver utensils worth [de]a hundred talents, and a hundred gold talents, 27 and twenty gold bowls worth a thousand [df]darics, and two utensils of fine shiny bronze, precious as gold. 28 Then I said to them, “(FU)You are holy to the Lord, and the (FV)utensils are holy; and the silver and the gold are a [dg]voluntary offering to the Lord God of your fathers. 29 Watch and keep them (FW)until you weigh them before the leading priests, the Levites, and the leaders of the fathers’ households of Israel in Jerusalem, in the chambers of the house of the Lord.” 30 So the priests and the Levites (FX)accepted the weight of silver and gold and the utensils, to bring them to Jerusalem to the house of our God.

31 Then we journeyed from (FY)the river Ahava on (FZ)the twelfth of the first month to go to Jerusalem; and (GA)the hand of our God was upon us, and He rescued us from the hand of the enemy and the ambushes by the road. 32 (GB)So we came to Jerusalem and remained there for three days.

Treasure Placed in the Temple

33 And on the fourth day the silver, the gold, and the utensils (GC)were weighed out in the house of our God into the hand of (GD)Meremoth the son of Uriah the priest, and with him was Eleazar the son of Phinehas; and with them were the Levites, Jozabad the son of Jeshua and Noadiah the son of Binnui. 34 A notation was made for everything by number and weight, and all the weight was recorded at that time.

35 (GE)The exiles who had come from the captivity offered burnt offerings to the God of Israel: (GF)twelve bulls for all Israel, ninety-six rams, seventy-seven lambs, twelve male goats for a sin offering, all as a burnt offering to the Lord. 36 Then (GG)they delivered the king’s edicts to (GH)the king’s satraps and the governors in the provinces beyond the Euphrates River, and they supported the people and the house of God.

Mixed Marriages

Now when these things had been completed, the officials approached me, saying, “The people of Israel and the priests and the Levites have not (GI)separated themselves from the peoples of the lands, (GJ)as to their abominations, those of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites. For (GK)they have taken some of their daughters as wives for themselves and for their sons, so that (GL)the holy [dh]race has (GM)intermingled with the peoples of the lands; indeed, the hands of the officials and the leaders have taken the lead in this unfaithfulness.” When I heard about this matter, I (GN)tore my garment and my robe, and pulled out some of the hair from my head and my beard, and (GO)sat down [di]appalled. Then (GP)everyone who was frightened by the words of the God of Israel on account of the unfaithfulness of the exiles gathered to me, and I sat [dj]appalled until (GQ)the evening offering.

Prayer of Confession

But at the evening offering I stood up from my [dk]humiliation, even with my garment and my robe torn, and I bowed down on my knees and (GR)spread out my [dl]hands to the Lord my God; and I said, “My God, I am ashamed and humiliated to lift up my face to You, my God, for our wrongful deeds have [dm]risen above our heads, and our (GS)guilt has grown even to the heavens. (GT)Since the days of our fathers to this day we have been in great guilt, and because of our wrongful deeds we, our kings, and our priests have been handed over to the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity, to plunder, and to [dn](GU)open shame, as it is this day. But now for a brief moment grace has been shown from the Lord our God, (GV)to leave us an escaped remnant and to give us a [do](GW)peg in His holy place, so that our God may (GX)enlighten our eyes and grant us a little reviving in our bondage. (GY)For we are slaves; yet in our bondage our God has not abandoned us, but (GZ)has extended favor to us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to give us reviving to erect the house of our God, to restore its ruins, and to give us a wall in Judah and Jerusalem.

10 “And now, our God, what shall we say after this? For we have abandoned Your commandments, 11 which You have commanded by Your servants the prophets, saying, ‘The land which you are entering to possess is an unclean land with the uncleanness of the peoples of the lands, with their abominations which have filled it from end to end, and (HA)with their impurity. 12 So now do not (HB)give your daughters to their sons nor take their daughters for your sons, and (HC)never seek their peace or their prosperity, so that you may be strong and may eat the good things of the land, and (HD)leave it as an inheritance to your sons forever.’ 13 And after everything that has come upon us for our evil deeds and (HE)our great guilt, since You our God have spared us by inflicting less than our wrongdoing deserves, and have given us such (HF)an escaped remnant as this, 14 (HG)shall we again break Your commandments and intermarry with the peoples [dp]who commit these abominations? (HH)Would You not be angry with us [dq]to the point of destruction, until there would be no remnant nor any who would escape? 15 Lord God of Israel, (HI)You are righteous, for we have been left an escaped remnant, as it is this day; behold, we are before You in (HJ)our guilt, for (HK)no one can stand before You because of this.”

Reconciliation with God

10 Now (HL)while Ezra was praying and making confession, weeping and prostrating himself (HM)before the house of God, a very large assembly, men, women, and children, gathered to him from Israel; for the people wept greatly. Shecaniah the son of Jehiel, one of the sons of Elam, said to Ezra, “(HN)We have been unfaithful to our God and have [dr]married foreign women from the peoples of the land; yet now there is hope for Israel in spite of this. So now (HO)let’s make a covenant with our God to send away all the wives and [ds](HP)their children, following the counsel of [dt]my lord and of (HQ)those who fear the commandment of our God; and let it be done (HR)according to the Law. Arise! For this matter is [du]your responsibility, but we will be with you; (HS)be courageous and act.”

Then Ezra stood and (HT)made the leading priests, the Levites, and all Israel take an oath that they would do according to this [dv]proposal; so they took the oath. Then Ezra (HU)rose from before the house of God and went into the chamber of Jehohanan the son of Eliashib. Although he went there, (HV)he did not eat bread nor drink water, because he was mourning over the unfaithfulness of the exiles. So they made a proclamation throughout Judah and Jerusalem to all the exiles, that they were to assemble at Jerusalem, and that whoever did not come within three days, in accordance with the counsel of the leaders and the elders, all his property would be forfeited, and he himself would be excluded from the assembly of the exiles.

So all the men of Judah and Benjamin assembled at Jerusalem within the three days. It was the ninth month on the twentieth of the month, and all the people sat in the public square before the house of God, (HW)trembling because of this matter and the heavy rain. 10 Then Ezra the priest stood up and said to them, “You have been unfaithful and have married foreign wives, adding to the guilt of Israel. 11 Now therefore, (HX)make confession to the Lord God of your fathers and (HY)do His will; and (HZ)separate yourselves from the peoples of the land and from the foreign wives.” 12 Then all the assembly replied with a loud voice, “It is [dw]our duty to do exactly as you have said! 13 However, there are many people, it is the rainy season, and we are not able to stand in the open. Nor can the task be done in one or two days, because we have done a great wrong in this matter. 14 Please let our leaders [dx]represent all the assembly and have all those in our cities who have married foreign wives come at appointed times, together with the elders and judges of each city, until the (IA)fierce anger of our God on account of this matter is turned away from us.” 15 Only Jonathan the son of Asahel and Jahzeiah the son of Tikvah [dy]opposed this, with Meshullam and Shabbethai the Levite supporting them.

16 But the exiles did so. And [dz]Ezra the priest selected men who were the heads of fathers’ households for each of their father’s households, all of them by name. So they [ea]convened on the first day of the tenth month to investigate the matter. 17 And they finished investigating all the men who had married foreign wives by the first day of the first month.

List of Offenders

18 Now among the sons of the priests who had married foreign wives were found of the sons of (IB)Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and his brothers: Maaseiah, Eliezer, Jarib, and Gedaliah. 19 They [eb]pledged to send away their wives, and being guilty, (IC)they offered a ram of the flock for their guilt. 20 Of the sons of Immer, there were Hanani and Zebadiah; 21 and of the sons of Harim: Maaseiah, Elijah, Shemaiah, Jehiel, and Uzziah; 22 and of the sons of Pashhur: Elioenai, Maaseiah, Ishmael, Nethanel, Jozabad, and Elasah.

23 Of the Levites there were Jozabad, Shimei, Kelaiah (that is, Kelita), Pethahiah, Judah, and Eliezer.

24 Of the singers there was Eliashib; and of the gatekeepers: Shallum, Telem, and Uri.

25 Of Israel, of the sons of (ID)Parosh there were Ramiah, Izziah, Malchijah, Mijamin, Eleazar, Malchijah, and Benaiah; 26 and of the sons of Elam: Mattaniah, Zechariah, Jehiel, Abdi, Jeremoth, and Elijah; 27 and of the sons of (IE)Zattu: Elioenai, Eliashib, Mattaniah, Jeremoth, Zabad, and Aziza; 28 and of the sons of Bebai: Jehohanan, Hananiah, Zabbai, and Athlai; 29 and of the sons of Bani: Meshullam, Malluch and Adaiah, Jashub, Sheal, and Jeremoth; 30 and of the sons of Pahath-moab: Adna and Chelal, Benaiah, Maaseiah, Mattaniah, Bezalel, Binnui, and Manasseh; 31 and of the sons of Harim: Eliezer, Isshijah, (IF)Malchijah, Shemaiah, Shimeon, 32 Benjamin, Malluch, and Shemariah; 33 of the sons of Hashum: Mattenai, Mattattah, Zabad, Eliphelet, Jeremai, Manasseh, and Shimei; 34 of the sons of Bani: Maadai, Amram, Uel, 35 Benaiah, Bedeiah, Cheluhi, 36 Vaniah, Meremoth, Eliashib, 37 Mattaniah, Mattenai, Jaasu, 38 Bani, Binnui, Shimei, 39 Shelemiah, Nathan, Adaiah, 40 Machnadebai, Shashai, Sharai, 41 Azarel, Shelemiah, Shemariah, 42 Shallum, Amariah, and Joseph. 43 Of the sons of (IG)Nebo there were Jeiel, Mattithiah, Zabad, Zebina, Jaddai, Joel, and Benaiah. 44 All of these men had married (IH)foreign wives, and some of them had wives by whom they had children.


  1. Ezra 1:3 Lit he is to go up
  2. Ezra 1:4 Or reside as a stranger
  3. Ezra 1:4 Lit his
  4. Ezra 1:4 Or freewill offering
  5. Ezra 1:6 Lit strengthened their hands
  6. Ezra 1:6 Or freewill offering
  7. Ezra 1:9 Heb obscure; other possible meanings are knives, censers
  8. Ezra 2:1 Lit sons
  9. Ezra 2:2 Lit who
  10. Ezra 2:2 In Neh 7:7, Azariah
  11. Ezra 2:2 In Neh 7:7, Raamiah
  12. Ezra 2:2 In Neh 7:7, Mispereth
  13. Ezra 2:2 In Neh 7:7, Nehum
  14. Ezra 2:10 In Neh 7:15, Binnui
  15. Ezra 2:18 In Neh 7:24, Hariph
  16. Ezra 2:20 In Neh 7:25, Gibeon
  17. Ezra 2:21 Lit sons
  18. Ezra 2:24 In Neh 7:28, Beth-azmaveth
  19. Ezra 2:25 In Neh 7:29, Kiriath-jearim
  20. Ezra 2:34 Lit sons
  21. Ezra 2:40 In Ezra 3:9, Judah; in Neh 7:43, Hodevah
  22. Ezra 2:44 In Neh 7:47, Sia
  23. Ezra 2:50 In Neh 7:52, Nephushesim
  24. Ezra 2:52 In Neh 7:54, Bazlith
  25. Ezra 2:55 In Neh 7:57, Sophereth
  26. Ezra 2:55 In Neh 7:57, Perida
  27. Ezra 2:57 In Neh 7:59, Amon
  28. Ezra 2:59 In Neh 7:61, Addon
  29. Ezra 2:59 Lit tell
  30. Ezra 2:59 Lit seed
  31. Ezra 2:63 Heb Tirshatha, a Persian title
  32. Ezra 2:65 Lit these
  33. Ezra 2:69 Or tunics
  34. Ezra 3:3 Lit terror was upon them from
  35. Ezra 3:4 Or Tabernacles
  36. Ezra 3:4 Lit by number
  37. Ezra 3:4 Lit a day’s word on its day
  38. Ezra 3:5 Or freewill offering
  39. Ezra 3:7 Lit of
  40. Ezra 3:9 In Ezra 2:40, Hodaviah; in Neh 7:43, Hodevah
  41. Ezra 3:10 As in LXX and some mss; MT they set the priests
  42. Ezra 3:10 Lit hands
  43. Ezra 3:12 Lit house
  44. Ezra 4:4 Lit slackened the hands of
  45. Ezra 4:6 Or Xerxes; Heb Ahash-verosh
  46. Ezra 4:7 Heb Artah-shashta
  47. Ezra 4:7 Lit writing
  48. Ezra 4:8 Chs 4:8-6:18 are in Aram
  49. Ezra 4:9 Uncertain, MT Then Rehum
  50. Ezra 4:10 I.e., prob. Ashurbanipal
  51. Ezra 4:13 Or certainly the kings
  52. Ezra 4:14 Lit eat the salt of
  53. Ezra 4:18 Lit clearly read
  54. Ezra 4:19 Lit put forth
  55. Ezra 4:20 Lit been
  56. Ezra 5:3 Lit house, and so in vv 9, 11, 12
  57. Ezra 5:8 Lit timber is
  58. Ezra 5:10 Lit at their heads
  59. Ezra 5:11 Lit returned us the word
  60. Ezra 6:1 Lit house of the books
  61. Ezra 6:2 Aram Achmetha
  62. Ezra 6:3 Lit house
  63. Ezra 6:3 Or perhaps offerings by fire be offered
  64. Ezra 6:3 About 90 ft. or 27 m
  65. Ezra 6:4 As in LXX; Aram a layer of new timber
  66. Ezra 6:4 Lit king’s house
  67. Ezra 6:5 Lit go
  68. Ezra 6:6 Aram their
  69. Ezra 6:6 Lit be distant
  70. Ezra 6:12 Lit sends his hand
  71. Ezra 6:12 Or violate
  72. Ezra 6:13 Lit sent
  73. Ezra 6:14 Lit were building and succeeding
  74. Ezra 6:14 Lit built and finished
  75. Ezra 6:15 Lit house
  76. Ezra 6:15 Lit until
  77. Ezra 6:16 Lit sons of the exile
  78. Ezra 6:22 Lit strengthen their hands
  79. Ezra 7:6 Lit his request
  80. Ezra 7:10 Lit set his heart
  81. Ezra 7:11 Or the scribe of
  82. Ezra 7:12 Ch 7:12-26 is in Aram
  83. Ezra 7:12 Or perhaps it is determined
  84. Ezra 7:14 Lit from before
  85. Ezra 7:16 Or freewill offering
  86. Ezra 7:22 About 3.75 tons or 3.4 metric tons
  87. Ezra 7:22 About 770 cubic feet or 22 cubic meters
  88. Ezra 7:22 About 600 gallons or 2,271 liters
  89. Ezra 7:22 About 600 gallons or 2,271 liters
  90. Ezra 7:22 Lit without instruction
  91. Ezra 7:23 Lit from the command of
  92. Ezra 7:26 Or fines
  93. Ezra 7:28 Lit heads
  94. Ezra 8:5 As in LXX; MT omits Zattu
  95. Ezra 8:10 As in LXX; MT omits Bani
  96. Ezra 8:13 Or Jeuel
  97. Ezra 8:14 Or Zakkur
  98. Ezra 8:14 Or him
  99. Ezra 8:16 Lit heads
  100. Ezra 8:17 Lit head
  101. Ezra 8:17 Lit put words in their mouth to say
  102. Ezra 8:17 As in LXX; MT Iddo his brother
  103. Ezra 8:19 As in LXX; MT with him Jeshaiah
  104. Ezra 8:21 Lit smooth way
  105. Ezra 8:22 Lit help
  106. Ezra 8:22 Lit upon all...for good
  107. Ezra 8:23 Lit was entreated by us
  108. Ezra 8:26 About 24 tons or 22 metric tons
  109. Ezra 8:26 About 3.75 tons or 3.4 metric tons
  110. Ezra 8:27 A coin weighing about 0.25 oz. or 7 gm
  111. Ezra 8:28 Or freewill offering
  112. Ezra 9:2 Lit seed
  113. Ezra 9:3 Or shattered
  114. Ezra 9:4 Or shattered
  115. Ezra 9:5 Or penitence
  116. Ezra 9:5 Lit palms
  117. Ezra 9:6 Lit increased over the head
  118. Ezra 9:7 Lit shame of faces
  119. Ezra 9:8 I.e., a foothold
  120. Ezra 9:14 Lit of these abominations
  121. Ezra 9:14 Lit to destroy
  122. Ezra 10:2 Lit given dwelling to
  123. Ezra 10:3 Lit that which is born of them
  124. Ezra 10:3 Or the Lord
  125. Ezra 10:4 Lit upon you
  126. Ezra 10:5 Lit word; or thing
  127. Ezra 10:12 Lit upon us
  128. Ezra 10:14 Lit stand for
  129. Ezra 10:15 Lit stood against
  130. Ezra 10:16 Heb there were set apart Ezra the priest, men...
  131. Ezra 10:16 Lit sat
  132. Ezra 10:19 Lit gave their hand

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