Ezra 5New Life Version (NLV)
Work on the House of God Starts Again
5 Now the men who spoke for God, Haggai and Zechariah the son of Iddo, spoke for God to the Jews in Judah and Jerusalem. They spoke in the name of the God of Israel Who was over them. 2 Then Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel and Jeshua the son of Jozadak began to build again the house of God in Jerusalem. The men who spoke for God were with them and helped them. 3 Then Tattenai, the leader over the land on the other side of the River, and Shethar-bozenai, and their friends, came to them and said, “Who told you to build on this house and to finish the building?” 4 They also asked, “What are the names of the men who are building this building?” 5 But the eye of their God was on the leaders of the Jews. They did not stop them until a letter was sent to Darius about it, and a written answer received from him.
6 This is what was said in the letter sent to King Darius from Tattenai, the leader over the land on the other side of the River, and Shethar-bozenai and his important friends. 7 It said: “To Darius the king, all peace. 8 Let it be known to the king that we have gone to the land of Judah, to the house of the great God. It is being built with very large stones, and heavy pieces of wood are being laid in the walls. This work is being done with much care and is going well in their hands. 9 We asked those leaders, ‘Who told you to build this house of worship and to finish the building?’ 10 We also asked them their names, that we might write down the names of their leaders and let you know. 11 They answered, ‘We are the servants of the God of heaven and earth. We are building again the house of God that was built many years ago, which a great king of Israel built and finished. 12 But because our fathers had made the God of heaven angry, He gave them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the Chaldean. Nebuchadnezzar destroyed this house of God, and carried the people away to Babylon. 13 But in the first year of Cyrus king of Babylon, King Cyrus told us to build again this house of God. 14 Nebuchadnezzar had taken the gold and silver objects of the house of God from the house in Jerusalem, and brought them to the house of worship at Babylon. But King Cyrus took them from the house of worship at Babylon and they were given to Sheshbazzar, whom he had chosen as leader over the land. 15 He said to him, “Go, take these objects to Jerusalem and carry them into the place of worship. And let the house of God be built again in its place.” 16 Then Sheshbazzar came and began building the house of God in Jerusalem. The building has been going on from then until now, and it is not yet finished.’ 17 So now, if it pleases the king, have men look through the books kept there in Babylon to see if King Cyrus had told them to build again this house of God at Jerusalem. Let the king send us word on what is decided about this.”