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Ezra 3 Good News Translation (GNT)

Worship Begins Again

By the seventh month the people of Israel were all settled in their towns. Then they all assembled in Jerusalem, and Joshua son of Jehozadak, his fellow priests, and Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, together with his relatives, rebuilt the altar of the God of Israel, so that they could burn sacrifices on it according to the instructions written in the Law of Moses, the man of God. Even though[a] the returning exiles were afraid of the people who were living in the land, they rebuilt the altar where it had stood before. Then they began once again to burn on it the regular morning and evening sacrifices. They celebrated the Festival of Shelters according to the regulations; each day they offered the sacrifices required for that day; and in addition they offered the regular sacrifices to be burned whole and those to be offered at the New Moon Festival and at all the other regular assemblies at which the Lord is worshiped, as well as all the offerings that were given to the Lord voluntarily. Although the people had not yet started to rebuild the Temple, they began on the first day of the seventh month to burn sacrifices to the Lord.

The Rebuilding of the Temple Begins

The people gave money to pay the stonemasons and the carpenters and gave food, drink, and olive oil to be sent to the cities of Tyre and Sidon in exchange for cedar trees from Lebanon, which were to be brought by sea to Joppa. All this was done with the permission of Emperor Cyrus of Persia. So in the second month of the year after they came back to the site of the Temple in Jerusalem, they began work. Zerubbabel, Joshua, and the rest of their people, the priests, and the Levites, in fact all the exiles who had come back to Jerusalem, joined in the work. All the Levites twenty years of age or older were put in charge of the work of rebuilding the Temple. The Levite Jeshua and his sons and relatives, and Kadmiel and his sons (the clan of Hodaviah[b]) joined together in taking charge of the rebuilding of the Temple. (They were helped by the Levites of the clan of Henadad.)

10 When the builders started to lay the foundation of the Temple, the priests in their robes took their places with trumpets in their hands, and the Levites of the clan of Asaph stood there with cymbals. They praised the Lord according to the instructions handed down from the time of King David. 11 They sang the Lord's praises, repeating the refrain:

“The Lord is good, and his love for Israel is eternal.” Everyone shouted with all their might, praising the Lord, because the work on the foundation of the Temple had been started. 12 Many of the older priests, Levites, and heads of clans had seen the first Temple, and as they watched the foundation of this Temple being laid, they cried and wailed. But the others who were there shouted for joy.

13 No one could distinguish between the joyful shouts and the crying, because the noise they made was so loud that it could be heard for miles.

Footnotes:

  1. Ezra 3:3 Even though; or Because.
  2. Ezra 3:9 Probable text (see 2.40) Hodaviah; Hebrew Judah.
Good News Translation (GNT)

Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Ezra 3 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Worship Restored at Jerusalem

When the seventh month came, and the Israelites were in the towns, the people gathered together in Jerusalem. Then Jeshua son of Jozadak, with his fellow priests, and Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel with his kin set out to build the altar of the God of Israel, to offer burnt offerings on it, as prescribed in the law of Moses the man of God. They set up the altar on its foundation, because they were in dread of the neighboring peoples, and they offered burnt offerings upon it to the Lord, morning and evening. And they kept the festival of booths,[a] as prescribed, and offered the daily burnt offerings by number according to the ordinance, as required for each day, and after that the regular burnt offerings, the offerings at the new moon and at all the sacred festivals of the Lord, and the offerings of everyone who made a freewill 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 was not yet laid. So they gave money to the masons and the carpenters, and food, drink, and oil to the Sidonians and the Tyrians to bring cedar trees from Lebanon to the sea, to Joppa, according to the grant that they had from King Cyrus of Persia.

Foundation Laid for the Temple

In the second year after their arrival at the house of God at Jerusalem, in the second month, Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel and Jeshua son of Jozadak made a beginning, together with the rest of their people, the priests and the Levites and all who had come to Jerusalem from the captivity. They appointed the Levites, from twenty years old and upward, to have the oversight of the work on the house of the Lord. And Jeshua with his sons and his kin, and Kadmiel and his sons, Binnui and Hodaviah[b] along with the sons of Henadad, the Levites, their sons and kin, together took charge of the workers in the house of God.

10 When the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, the priests in their vestments were stationed to praise the Lord with trumpets, and the Levites, the sons of Asaph, with cymbals, according to the directions of King David of Israel; 11 and they sang responsively, praising and giving thanks to the Lord,

“For he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever toward Israel.”

And all the people responded with a great shout when they praised the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid. 12 But many of the priests and Levites and heads of families, old people who had seen the first house on its foundations, wept with a loud voice when they saw this house, though many shouted aloud for joy, 13 so that the people could not distinguish the sound of the joyful shout from the sound of the people’s weeping, for the people shouted so loudly that the sound was heard far away.

Footnotes:

  1. Ezra 3:4 Or tabernacles; Heb succoth
  2. Ezra 3:9 Compare 2.40; Neh 7.43; 1 Esdras 5.58: Heb sons of Judah
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Ezra 3 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

When the seventh month arrived, after the people of Isra’el had resettled in the towns, the people gathered with one accord in Yerushalayim. Then Yeshua the son of Yotzadak with his fellow cohanim, and Z’rubavel the son of Sh’alti’el with his kinsmen, organized rebuilding the altar of the God of Isra’el; so that they could offer burnt offerings on it, as is written in the Torah of Moshe the man of God. They set up the altar on its former bases. Despite feeling threatened by the peoples of the [surrounding] countries; they offered on it burnt offerings to Adonai, the morning and evening burnt offerings.

They observed the festival of Sukkot as written, offering daily the number of burnt offerings prescribed for each day, and afterwards the regular burnt offering, the offerings for Rosh-Hodesh and those for all the designated times set apart for Adonai, as well as those of everyone who volunteered a voluntary offering to Adonai. From the first day of the seventh month, they began offering burnt offerings to Adonai, even though the foundation of Adonai’s temple had not yet been laid. They also gave money for the stone-workers and carpenters, as well as food, drink and olive oil for the people of Tzidon and Tzor bringing cedar logs from the L’vanon to the sea and on to Yafo, in accordance with the authorization granted by Koresh king of Persia.

In the second year after their arrival at the house of God in Yerushalayim, in the second month, Z’rubavel the son of Sh’alti’el, Yeshua the son of Yotzadak, the rest of their kinsmen the cohanim and L’vi’im, and all who had come out of exile to Yerushalayim began the project. They appointed the L’vi’im aged twenty and up to direct work in the house of Adonai. Yeshua and his sons and brothers, Kadmi’el and his sons, and Y’hudah’s sons together directed the workers in the house of God; also the sons of Henadad, with their sons and their kinsmen the L’vi’im.

10 When the builders laid the foundation of the temple of Adonai, the cohanim in their robes, with trumpets, and the L’vi’im the sons of Asaf, with cymbals, took their places to praise Adonai, as David king of Isra’el had instructed. 11 They sang antiphonally, praising and giving “thanks to Adonai, for he is good, for his grace continues forever” toward Isra’el. All the people raised a great shout of praise to Adonai, because the foundation of the house of Adonai had been laid. 12 But many of the cohanim, L’vi’im and heads of fathers’ clans, the old men who had seen the first house standing on its foundation, wept out loud when they saw this house; while others shouted out loud for joy — 13 so that the people couldn’t distinguish the noise of the joyful shouting from the noise of the people’s weeping; for the people were shouting so loudly that the noise could be heard at a great distance.

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

Ezra 3 The Message (MSG)

The Building Begun: “The Foundation of the Temple Was Laid”

1-2 When the seventh month came and the Israelites had settled into their towns, the people assembled together in Jerusalem. Jeshua son of Jozadak and his brother priests, along with Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, and his relatives, went to work and built the Altar of the God of Israel to offer Whole-Burnt-Offerings on it as written in The Revelation of Moses the man of God.

3-5 Even though they were afraid of what their non-Israelite neighbors might do, they went ahead anyway and set up the Altar on its foundations and offered Whole-Burnt-Offerings on it morning and evening. They also celebrated the Festival of Booths as prescribed and the daily Whole-Burnt-Offerings set for each day. And they presented the regular Whole-Burnt-Offerings for Sabbaths, New Moons, and God’s Holy Festivals, as well as Freewill-Offerings for God.

They began offering Whole-Burnt-Offerings to God from the very first day of the seventh month, even though The Temple of God’s foundation had not yet been laid.

They gave money to hire masons and carpenters. They gave food, drink, and oil to the Sidonians and Tyrians in exchange for the cedar lumber they had brought by sea from Lebanon to Joppa, a shipment authorized by Cyrus the king of Persia.

8-9 In the second month of the second year after their arrival at The Temple of God in Jerusalem, Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua son of Jozadak, in company with their brother priests and Levites and everyone else who had come back to Jerusalem from captivity, got started. They appointed the Levites twenty years of age and older to direct the rebuilding of The Temple of God. Jeshua and his family joined Kadmiel, Binnui, and Hodaviah, along with the extended family of Henadad—all Levites—to direct the work crew on The Temple of God.

10-11 When the workers laid the foundation of The Temple of God, the priests in their robes stood up with trumpets, and the Levites, sons of Asaph, with cymbals, to praise God in the tradition of David king of Israel. They sang antiphonally praise and thanksgiving to God:

Yes! God is good!
Oh yes—he’ll never quit loving Israel!

11-13 All the people boomed out hurrahs, praising God as the foundation of The Temple of God was laid. As many were noisily shouting with joy, many of the older priests, Levites, and family heads who had seen the first Temple, when they saw the foundations of this Temple laid, wept loudly for joy. People couldn’t distinguish the shouting from the weeping. The sound of their voices reverberated for miles around.

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson

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