Table of Contents
The First Book of Esdras the ProphetEsdras from the Hebrew means help
The 1st Chapter
In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, (that the word of the Lord spoken by the mouth of Jeremy might be fulfilled) the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he caused it to be proclaimed throughout all his empire, yes and by writing also, saying: Thus says Cyrus the king of Persia: The Lord God of heaven has given me all the kingdoms of the land and has commanded me to build him an house at Jerusalem in Judah. Whosoever now among you is his people, the Lord God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem in Judah, and build the house of the Lord God of Israel. He is the God that is at Jerusalem. And whosoever remains yet in any manner of place (where he is a stranger) let the men of his place help him with silver and gold, with good cattle, beside the which they willingly offer, for the house of God at Jerusalem.
Then got up the principle fathers of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and the Levites, and all they whose spirit God had raised to go up, and to build the house of the Lord at Jerusalem. And all they that were about them, strengthened their hand with vessels of silver and gold, with goods and cattle, and jewels, beside that which they gave of their own free will. And King Cyrus brought forth of the vessels of the house of the Lord, which Nabuchodonozar had taken out of Jerusalem, and put in the house of his gods. But Cyrus the king of Persia brought forth by Mithridates the treasurer, and numbered them unto Sesbazar the prince of Judah. And this is the number of them: thirty basins of gold, and a thousand basins of silver, nine and twenty knives, thirty cups of gold, and of other silver cups four hundred and ten, and of other vessels a thousand. So that all the vessels both of gold and silver, were five thousand and four hundred. Sesbazar brought them all up, with them that came up out of the captivity of Babylon unto Jerusalem.
The 2nd Chapter
These are the children of the land that went up out of the captivity, (whom Nabuchodonozor the king of Babylon had carried away unto Babylon) and came again unto Jerusalem and in Judah, every one unto his city, and came with Zorobabel: Jesua, Nehemiah, Seraiah, Raelaiah, Mardochai, Belsan, Mesphar, Begavai, Rehum and Baanah. This is now the number of the men of the people of Israel: The children of Pharos, two thousand, an hundred, and two and seventy: the children of Saphatiah, three hundred and two and seventy: The children of Arath, seven hundred and five and seventy . The children of Pahas Moab among the children of Jesua Joab, two thousand eight hundred and twelve. The children of Elam, a thousand two hundred and four and fifty. The children of Zethua, nine hundred and five and forty . The children of Sacai, seven hundred and threescore: The children of Bani, six hundred and two and forty. The children of Bebai, six hundred and three and twenty. The children of Asgad, a thousand two hundred and two and twenty. the children of *Adonikam, six hundred and six and sixty. The children of Beguai, two thousand and six and fifty. The children of Adin, four hundred and four and fifty. The children of Ater of Hezekiah, eight and ninety. The children of Bezai, three hundred and three and twenty. The children of Jorath, an hundred and twelve. The children of Hasum, two hundred and three and twenty. The children of Gebar, five and ninety. The children of Bethlehem, an hundred and three and twenty. The men of Netopha, six and fifty. The men of Anathoth, an hundred and eight and twenty. The children of Asmaueth, two and forty. The children of Kariath Jarim, Cephirah, and Beeroth, seven hundred and three and forty. The children of Ramah and Gabaah, six hundred and one and twenty. The men of Machmas, an hundred and two and twenty. The men of Bethel and Ai, two hundred and three and twenty. The children of Nebo, two and fifty. The children of Magbis, an hundred and six and fifty. The children of the other Elam, a thousand, two hundred four and fifty. The children of Harim, three hundred and twenty. The children of Lodhadid, and Ono, seven hundred and five and twenty. The children of Jericho, three hundred and five and forty. The children of Senaah, three thousand and six hundred and thirty. *Adonikam Here is your 666 ...Adonai = (parallel with Yahweh) Kam= rises up. One will rise up claiming to be parallel with God. Plainly, who, or what doctrine, except Christ only could be between mankind and God?
The priests. The children of Jedaiah of the house of Jeshua, nine hundred and three and seventy: The children of Emer, a thousand, and two and fifty. The children of Phashur, a thousand, two hundred and seven and forty: The children of Harim, a thousand and seventeen.
The Levites. the children of Jeshua and Cadmiel, of the children of Hodaviah, four and seventy. The singers, the children of Asaph, an hundred and eight and twenty. The children of the doorkeepers. The children of Selum, the children of Ater, the children of Talmon, the children of Akub, the children of Hatita, the children of Sobai: all together an hundred and nine and thirty.
The Nethinims, the children of Ziha, the children of Hasupha, the children of Tabaoth, The children of Ceros, the children of Sieha, the children of Phadon, The children of Lebanah, the children of Hagabah, the children of Acub, The children of Hagab, the children of Samlai, the children of Hanan, The children of Gadel, the children of Gahar, the children of Reaiah, The children of Razin, the children of Necuba, the children of Gasan, The children of Usa, the children of Phasseah, the children of Bessar, The children of Asneh, the children of Meunim, the children of Nephussim, The children of Bacbuc, the children of Hacupha, the children of Harhur, The children of Bezeluth, the children of Mahira, the children of Harsa, The children of Barcom, the children of Sisara, the children of Thamah, The children of Neziah, the children of Hatipha.
The children of Solomons servants, the children of Sotai, the children of Sophereth, the children of Pharuda, The children of Jaalah, the children of Darcon, the children of Gedell, The children of Saphatiah, the children of Nattill, the children of Pochereth of Zebaim, the children of Ami. All the Nethinims, and the children of Solomons servants, were all together three hundred and two and ninety.
And these went up also, Thelmelah, Tel Harsa, Cherub, Addon, and Emer: but they could not show their fathers house, nor their seed, whether they were of Israel. The children of Dalaiah, the children of Tobiah, the children of Necoda, six hundred and two and fifty. And of the children of the priests. The children of Hobaiah, the children of Hacos, the children of Berzilai, which took one of the daughters of Berzilai the Galaadite to wife, and was counted among the same names: These sought the register of their birth, and found none, therefore they were, put from the priesthood. And the Hasirsatha said unto them, that they should not eat of the most holy, till there rose up a priest with light and perfectness.
The whole congregation as one man, was two and forty thousand, three hundred and threescore, Beside their servants and maidens, of whom there were seven thousand, three hundred and seven and thirty. And they had two hundred singing men and women, seven hundred and six and thirty horses, two hundred and five and forty Mules, four hundred and five and thirty Camels, and six thousand, seven hundred and twenty Asses. And certain of the chief fathers, when they came to the house of the Lord at Jerusalem, they offered willingly unto the house of God, that it should be set in his place, and gave after their ability unto the treasure of the work, one and three score thousand drams, and five thousand pound of silver, and an hundred priests garments. So the priests and the Levites, and certain of the people, and the singers, and the porters, and the Nethinims dwelt in their cities, and all Israel in their cities.
The 3rd Chapter
And when the seventh month came, and the children of Israel were now their cities, the people came together even as one man, unto Jerusalem. And there stood up Jesua the son of Josedec, and his brethren the priests, and Zorobabel the son of Salathiel and his brethren, and builded the altar of the God of Israel, to offer burnt offerings theron, as it is written in the law of Moses the man of God. And the altar set they upon his sockets (for there was a fearfullness among them because of the nations and the lands) and offered burnt offerings theron unto the Lord, in the morning and at evening. And held the feast of tabernacles as it is written, and offered burnt offerings daily in order, according to the custom, day by day. Afterward the daily burnt offering also, and of the new Moons and of all the feasts of the Lord that were hallowed, and all manner of free will offerings, which they did of their own freewill unto the Lord.
Upon the first day of the seventh month began they to offer burnt sacrifices unto the Lord. But the foundation of the temple of the Lord was not yet laid. Nevertheless they gave money unto the masons and the carpenters, and meat and drink and oil unto them of Zidon and of Tyre, to bring Cedar timber from Libanus by See unto Joppa, according to the commandment of Cyrus king of Persia.
In the second year of their coming unto the house of God at Jerusalem, in the second month, began Zorobabel the son of Salathiel, and Jeshua the son of Josadec, and the remnant of their brethren the priests and the Levites, and all they that were come out of the captivity unto Jerusalem, and appointed the Levites from twenty years old and above, to see that the work of the house of the Lord went forward. And Jesua stood with his sons and his brethren, and Cadmiel with his sons and the children of Judah, to further the workmen of the house of God, namely the children of Henadad with their children and their brethren the Levites.
And when the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, the priests stood in their array, with trumpets. And the Levites the children of Asaph with cymbals, to praise the Lord, after the manner of David king of Israel. And they sang together, giving praise and thanks unto the Lord, because he is gracious, and because his mercy endures forever upon Israel. And all the people shouted loud in praising the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid. Many also of the old priests and Levites and ancient fathers, which had seen the first house: when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, wept with a loud voice. And many shouted with joy, so that the noise gave a great sound, in so much that the people could not know the joyful sound for the noise of the weeping among the people: for the people shouted with a loud cry, so that the noise was heard afar off.
The 4th Chapter
But when the adversaries of Judah and Benjamin heard, that the children of the captivity builded the temple unto the Lord God of Israel, they came to Zorobabel and to the principal fathers, and said unto them: We will build with you: for we seek the Lord your God like as you do. And we have done sacrifice unto him, since the time that Asor Hadon the king of Assur brought us up hither. But Zorobabel and Jesua and the other ancient fathers of Israel answered them: It belongs not to you, but to us to build the house unto our God: for we ourselves will build alone unto the Lord our God of Israel, as Cyrus the king of Persia has commanded us.
Then the flock of the land hindered the people of Judah, and made the afraid to build, and hired counsellors against them and hindered their devise, as long as Cyrus the king of Persia lived, until the reign of Darius king of Persia. But when Ahasuerus was king, in the beginning of his reign wrote they unto him a complaint against them of Judah and Jerusalem.
And in the time of Arthaxerses, wrote Bisellam, Mithridates, Tabeel, and the other of their counsel, unto Arthaxerses king of Persia. But the *scripture of the letter was written in the *Syrians speech, and was interpreted in the language of the Syrians. Rehum the chancellor, and Samsai the scribe, wrote this letter against Jerusalem to Arthaxerses the king. *scripture: note this word and compare all the different Bibles written to mens purposes *Syrians speech= exalted language of oppression, destruction. RN
We Rehum the chancellor, and Samsai the scribe, and the other of the counsel of Dina, of Axphasath, of Tarplat, of Persia, of Arach, of Babilon, of Susan, of Deha, and of Elam, and other of the people, whom the great and noble Asenaphar brought over, and set in the cities of Samaria, and other on this side the *water, and in *Ceneeth. And this is the sum of the letter that they sent unto king Arthaxerses.
*water; note this word water as the water which is the separation of these people and those that are of God. water = testimony, witness of the TRUTH /ie Christ /ie the love of the truth RN
*Ceneeth=from the marginal notes "peace and health" and though not found in available references, this word may be Kenath 07079 from the Hebrew "qanah" meaning to be purchased or bought, as if acquired by gain. RN
*Thy servants the men on this side the water, and in Ceneeth. Be it known unto the king, that the Jews are come up from you to us unto Jerusalem a city *seditious and *forward, and build the same, and lay the foundation of the walls thereof, and repair them. Be it known now therefore unto the king, that if this city be builded and the walls made up again, then shall not they pay tribute, toll, and yearly custom, and even unto the kings shall this hurt *redownde. But now that we all are thereby which destroyed the temple, we would no longer see the kings dishonor. Therefore sent we out, and caused the king to be certified thereof: That it may be sought in the Chronicles of your progenitors, and so shall you find in the same Chronicles, and perceive, that this city is seditious and noisome unto the kings lands, and that they cause others also to rebel of the old, and for the same cause was this city destroyed. Therefore do we certify the king, that if this city be builded, and the walls thereof made up, you shall keep nothing on this side the water by reason of it. *Thy servants; note that these are servants of the king (earthly ruler)*seditious =encouraging rebellion (in this case against wickedness) *forward= stubborn, contrary, disobedient *redownde= perhaps the kings rise to position from the mid/Eng: "downed" renoun RN marginal note is : Some read And the kings tribute may incur damage.
Then sent the king an answer unto Rehum the chancellor, and to Samsai the scribe, and to the other of their counsel that dwell in Samaria, and unto others beyond the water. Peace and salutation. The letter which you sent unto us, has been openly read before me, and I have commanded to make search: and it is found, that this city of old, has made insurrection against kings, and how the uproar and rebellion has been committed therein. There have been mighty kings also at Jerusalem which have reigned over all that is beyond the water, and toll, tribute and a yearly custom was given unto them. Do you now after this commandment, forbid the same men, that the city be not builded, till I have given commandment. Take heed now that you be not negligent here in, least the king have harm there through.
Now when King Arthaxerses letter was read before Rehum the chancellor and Samsai the scribe and their council, they went up in all haste to Jerusalem unto the Jews, and forbade them with violence and power. Then ceased the work of the house of God at Jerusalem, and continued so unto the second year of Darius King of Persia.
The 5th Chapter
From the Hebrew; Haggai = "festive" and to keep, hold fast
Zechariah = "Jehovah remembers" and Ebiasaph = "my father has gathered"
The Prophets, Aggeus, and Zachary the son of *Ado, prophesied unto the Jews that were in Judah and Jerusalem, in the name of the God of Israel. Then got up Zorobabel the son of Salathiel, and Jesua the son of Josedec, and began to build the house of God at Jerusalem, and with them the Prophets of God which helped them. At the same time came to them *Thasanai, the captain on this side the water, and *Starbuzanai, and their counselors, and said thus unto them: Who has commanded you to build this house, and to make up the walls thereof? Then told we them the names of the men, that made this building. But the eye of their God came upon the Elders of the Jews, that they could not cause them to cease, till the matter was brought before Darius, and till they had answered by letters thereunto.
*Iddo = "His witness" *Tatnai = "gift" *Shethar-boznai = "star of splendor"
This is the copy of the letter that Thasanai the captain on this side the water, and Starbuzanai, and their counselors of Apharsach, (which were on this side the water) sent unto king Darius. And this is the intent of the words that they sent unto him: Unto Darius the king, all peace. Be it known unto the king, that we came into Jewri to the house of the great God, which is builded with rough stone, and beams are laid in the walls, and the work goes fast forth, and prospers in their hands. We asked therefore the Elders and said unto them: Who has commanded you to build this house, and to make up the walls thereof? We asked their names also, that we might certify you, and have written the names of the men that were their rulers.
But they answered us with these words, and said: We are the servants of the God of heaven and earth, and build the house that was builded many years ago, which a great king of Israel builded and set up. And after our forefathers had provoked the God of heaven unto wrath, he gave them over in to the hand of Nabuchodonozor the king of Babylon, the Chaldean, which break down this house, and carried the people away unto Babylon.
But in the first year of Cyrus the king of Babylon, the same king Cyrus commanded to build this house of God, for the vessels of gold and silver in the house of God, which Nabuchodonozor took out of the temple at Jerusalem, and brought them into the temple at Babilon, those did Cyrus the king take out of the temple of Babylon, and delivered them unto Sasbazar by name, whom he made captain, and said unto him. Take these vessels, go your way, and bring them unto the temple at Jerusalem, and let the house of God be builded in his place. Then came the same Sasbazar and laid the foundation of the house of God at Jerusalem. Since that time has it been in building, and yet it is not finished. If it please the king now, let there be search made in the kings treasure house, which is at Babylon, whether it have been king Cyrus commandment, that the house of God at Jerusalem should be builded: and send us the kings mind concerning the same.
The 6th Chapter
Then commanded king Darius, that search should be made in the library of the kings treasure house which lay at Babilon. *So at Egbathanis in a castell (castle) there lies in the land of the Meedes, there was found a book, and in it there was an act written after this manner: In the first year of king Cyrus, commanded the same king Cyrus to build the house of God at Jerusalem, in the place where the sacrifice is made, and to lay the foundation to bear threescore cubits height, threescore cubits breadth, and three walls of rough stones, one wall timber, and the expenses shall be given of the kings house. And the gold and silver vessel of the house of God,(which Nabuchodonozor took out of the temple at Jerusalem, and brought unto Babilon) shall be restored again, that they may be brought unto the temple at Jerusalem to their place into the house of God. *Some read And there was found in a coffer, that was in the palace in the land of the Medes, a volume and therein was written such a memorial. MN
Get you far from them therefore, you Thasanai, captain beyond the water, and Stharbuzani, and your counselors, which are beyond the water, get you away from them. Let them work in the house of God, that the captain of the Jews and their Elders may build this house of God in his place. I have commanded also, what shall be done to the Elders of Juda for the building of this house of God, that there shall diligently be taken of the kings goods, even of the rents beyond the water, and given unto these men, and that they be not hindered. And if they have need of lambs, or goats, for the burnt offering unto the God of heaven, wheat, salt, wine and oil, after the custom of the priests at Jerusalem, there shall be given them daily as is according: and see that this is done without fault, that they may offer sweet saviours unto the God of heaven, and pray for the kings life, and for his children. This commandment have I given. And what man so ever he be that alters these words, *there shall a beam be taken from his house, and set up, and he shall be hanged thereon, and his house shall be *prized for the deed. *prized= that is a prize for someone else RN
But the God that dwells in heaven, destroy all kings and people, that put their hand to alter and to break down the house of God at Jerusalem. I Darius have commanded, that this be done with diligent speed.
Then Thasanai the captain beyond the water, and Stharbuzanai with their counselors (to whom king Darius the king had sent) did their diligence. And the Elders of the Jews builded, and they prospered through the prophesying of Aggeus the prophet and Zachary the son of Ado: and they builded, and set up the work, according to the commandment of the God of Israel, and after the commandment of Cyrus, Darius, and Arthaxerses kings of Persia. And they performed the house unto the *third day of the month Adar, that was in the sixth year of the reign of king Darius. *third day = note this "third day" throughout the text of the Bible.
And the children of Israel, the priests, the Levites, and the other children of the captivity, held a dedication of this house of God with joy, and offered at the dedication of the house of God, an hundred calves, two hundred lambs, four hundred goats: and for the sin offering for all Israel, twelve he goats, according to the number of the tribes of Israel, and set the priests in their courses, and the Levites in their offices to minister unto God which is at Jerusalem as it is written in the book of Moses.
And the children of the captivity held Passover upon the fourteenth day of the first month: for the priests and the Levites had purified themselves, so they were all clean as one man, and killed Passover for all the children of the captivity, and for their brethren the priests, and for themselves. And the children of Israel which were come again out of captivity, and all such as had separated themselves unto them from the filthiness of the Heathen in the land, to seek the Lord God of Israel, ate and held the feast of unleavened bread seven days with joy: for the Lord had made them glad, and turned the heart of the king of Assur unto them, so that their hands were strengthened in the work of the house of God, which is the God of Israel.
The 7th Chapter
After these acts in the reign of Arthaxerses King of Persia, there went up from Babilon, Esdras the son of Saraiah, the son of Asariah, the son of Helkiah, the son of Sellum, the son of Zadoc, the son of Ahitob, the son of Amariah, the son of Asariah, the son of Maraioth, the son of Zaraiah, the son of Dzi (Uzi), the son of Boki, the son of Abisua, the son of Phinehes, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the chief priest: This Esdras was a quick scribe in the law of Moses, which the Lord God of Israel did give. And the king gave him all that he required, according to the hand of the Lord his God upon him. And there went up certain of the children of Israel, and of the priests, and of the Levites, of the singers, of the porters, and of the Nethinims unto Jerusalem, in the seventh year of king Arthaxerses. And they came to Jerusalem in the fifth month, that is the seventh year of the king. For upon the first day of the first month devised he to go up from Babilon: and on the first day of the fifth month came he to Jerusalem, according to the good hand of his God upon him. For Esdras prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach the precept and judgement in Israel.
And this is the copy of the letter, that king Arthaxerses gave unto Esdras the priest, the scribe, which was a teacher in the words of the Lord and of his statutes over Israel. Unto Esdras the priest and scribe in the law of the God of heaven, peace and salutation. I have commanded, that all they of the people of Israel, and of the priests and Levites in my realm, which are minded of their own freewill to go up to Jerusalem, that they go with you, being sent of the king and of the seven Lords of the counsel, to visit Judah and Jerusalem, according to the law of God, which is in your hand: And that you should take with you, silver and gold, which the king and the Lords of his counsel give of their own good will unto the God of Israel (whose habitation is at Jerusalem) and all the silver and gold that you can find in all the country of Babilon: with it that the people and priests give of their own good will unto the house of God at Jerusalem.
Take you the same, and buy diligently with the money, calves, lambs, goats, and meat offerings and drink offerings, to be offered upon the altar of the house of your God at Jerusalem. And look what it likes you and your brethren to do with the remnant of the money, you do after the will of your God. And the vessels that are given you for the ministration in the house of your God, those deliver you before God at Jerusalem.
And whatsoever thing more shall be needful for the house of your God, which is necessary for you to spend, let the same be given out of the kings chamber. I king Arthaxerses have commanded all the treasurers beyond the water, that look whatsoever Esdras the priest and scribe in the law of the God of heaven, requires of you, that you fulfill the same diligently, until an hundred talents of silver, until an hundred quarters of wheat, and until an hundred baths of wine, and till an hundred baths of oil, and salt without measure. Whatsoever belongs to the law of the God of heaven, let the same be done with diligence for the house of the God of heaven, that there come no wrath upon the kings realm and his children.
And be it known unto you, that you shall have no authority to require taxing and custom, yearly rents upon any of the priests, Levites, singers, porters, Nethinims, and ministers in the house of this God. But you Esdras, (after the wisdom of your God that is in your hand) set you judges and arbiters , to judge all the people that is beyond the Jordan, even all such as know the law of your God: and them that know it not, those see that you teach. And whosoever will not diligently fulfill the law of your God, and the kings law, shall have his judgment for the deed, whether it be unto death, or to be banished, or to be condemned in goods, or to be put in prison.
Praised be the Lord God of our fathers, which so has inspired the kings heart, to garneth (garnish?) the house of God at Jerusalem: and has inclined his mercy unto me in the presence of the king, and his counsellors, and before all the kings high estates. And I was comforted (according to the hand of the Lord my God over me) and so gathered I the heads of Israel together, that they might go up with me.
The 8th Chapter
These are the heads of their fathers that were named, which went up from Babilon, what time as king Arthaxerses reigned. Of the children of Phinehes, Gersom: of the children of Ithamar, Daniel: of the children of David, Hatus: Of the children of Zecaniah, of the children of Pharos, Zachary, and with him were numbered an hundred and fifty men. Of the children of Pahas Moab, Elioenai the son of Zarakiah, and with him two hundred men. Of the children of Zechaniah the son of Jahasiel, and with him three hundred men. Of the children also of Adin Abed the son of Jonathan, and with him fifty men. Of the children of Elam, Jsaiah the son of Athaliah, and with him seventy men. Of the children of Saphatia, Zabadiah the son of Michael, and with him fourscore men.
Of the children of Joab, Obadiah the son of Jehiel, and with him two hundred and eighteen men. Of the children of Selomith, the son of Josphiah, and with him an hundred and three men.
Of the children of Bebai, Zachary the son of Bebai, and with him eight and twenty men. Of the children of Asgad, Jehanan the son of Hakatan, and with him an hundred and ten men. Of the last children of Adonicam, and these were their names: Eliphelet, Jehiel, and Samaiah, and with them threescore men. Of the children of Begui, Uthai, and Zabud, and with them seventy men. And I gathered them together by the water that runs to Ahava, and there abode we three days. And when I looked among the people and the priests, I found no Levites there. Then sent I Elieser, Ariel, Semeiah, Elnathan, Jarib, Elnathan, Nathan, Zachary, and Mosollam the rulers, and Joiarib, and Elnathan the teachers, and those sent I unto Edo the chiefest at Casphia, and I told them what they should say unto Edo and to his brethren the Nethinims, at Casphia.
And (according to the good hand of our God upon us) they brought us a wise man from among the children of Moholi the son of Levi the son of Israel, even Sarebia, with his sons and his brethren, eighteen. And Hasabia, and with him Jsaiah of the children of Merari, his brethren and their sons, twenty. And of the Nethinims, whom David and the Princes gave to minister unto the Levites, two hundred and twenty, all named by name.
And even there by the water of Ahaua, caused I a *fasting to be proclaimed, that we humble ourselves before our God, to seek of him a right way for us, and our children and of all our substance. For I was ashamed to require of the king, soldiers and horsemen, to help us against the enemy in the way. For we had said unto the king: The hand of our God is upon all them that seek him in goodness, and his violence and wrath is upon all them that forsake him. So we fasted, and sought this at our God, and he heard us. *fastings as the scripture makes mention have been common humblations done before God: other for some great tribulation suffered or coming at hand or for a singular repentance and earnest forsaking of their sins, as is written in Kings 7 and 31 also in 2 Esdras 1 MN
And I took out twelve of the chief priests, Sarabia, Hasabia, and ten of their brethren with them, and weighed them there the silver and gold and vessels for the heave offering unto the house of our God, which the king and his lords of his counsel and princes, and all Israel that were at hand, had given to the heave offering: And there weighed I them under their hand six hundred and fifty talents of silver, and in silver vessel an hundred talents, and in gold an hundred talents, twenty cups of gold of a thousand drams, and two costly ornaments of good brass, as clear as gold, and said unto them: you are holy unto the Lord, therefore are these vessels holy also, and so is the silver and the gold that is given of a good will unto the Lord God of your fathers: Watch you therefore and keep it, till you weigh it down before the chief priests and Levites, and ancient fathers of Israel at Jerusalem in the chests of the house of the Lord. Then took I the priests and the Levites that weighed silver and gold and vessel, to bring it to Jerusalem unto the house of our God. So we breakup, from the water of Ahava on the twelfth day of the first month, to go unto Jerusalem: and the hand of our God was upon us, and delivered us from the hand of the enemies and *prevy waitings by the way. And we came to Jerusalem, and abode there three days. But on the fourth day was the silver and the gold, and vessel weighed in the house of our God under the hand of Meremoth the son of Uriah the priest, and with him Eleazar the son of Phinehes, and with them Josabad the son of Jesua, and Noadiah the son of Benoi the Levites, according to the number and weight of every one. And the weight was all written up at the same time. * prevy = secrets, privileged, concealed
And the children of the captivity, which were come out of prison, offered burnt offerings unto the God of Israel: twelve bullocks for all Israel, six and six rams, seven and seventy lambs, twelve goats for a sin offering, all to the burnt offering of the Lord. And they delivered the kings commission unto the kings officers, and to the captains on this side the water. And they promoted the people and the house of God.
The 9th Chapter
When all this was performed, the rulers came to me, and said: The people of Israel, and the priests, and Levites are not separated from the nations in the lands as touching their abominations, namely of the Cananites, Hethites, Pheresites, Jebusites, Ammonites, Moabites, Egyptians, and the Amorites. For they have taken of the daughters of the same, and their sons, and mixed the holy seed with the nations in the lands: and the hand of the princes and rulers has been principal in this trespass.
And when I heard this, I rent my clothes and my raiment, and plucked off the hair of my head and of my beard, and sat mourning. And there resorted unto me all such as feared the word of the Lord God of Israel, because of the great transgression. And I sat mourning until the evening sacrifice. And about the evening sacrifice I rose up from my heaviness, and rent my clothes and my raiment, and fell upon my knees, and spread out my hands unto the Lord my God, And said:
My God, I am ashamed, and dare not lift up mine eyes unto my God: for our wickednesses are grown over our head, and our trespasses are waxen great unto the heaven. Since the time of our fathers have we been in great trespass unto this day, and because of our wickedness have we and our kings been delivered into the hand of the kings of the nations, in to the sword, in to captivity, in to spoil, and in to confusion of face, as it is come to pass this day.
But now is there a little and *sodaine graciousness come from Lord our God, so that some of us are escaped, that he may give us a nail in his holy place, that our God may light our eyes, and give us a little life in our bondage. For we are bondmen, and our God has not forsaken us in our bondage, and has inclined mercy unto us in the sight of the kings of Persia, that he should give us life, and promote the house of our God, and to set up the desolation thereof, and to give us an hedge in Judah and in Jerusalem. *sodaine =Thoroughly soaked; saturated. His grace remains today, that we might be willing , through repentance, to be thoroughly soaked in the waters of grace. Thank you Lord God. RN
And now O' our God, what shall we say after this: for we have forsaken your commandments, which you have commanded by your servants the Prophets, and said: The land unto which you go to possess it, is an unclean land through the filthiness of the people of the lands, in their abominations wherewith they have made it full of uncleanness on every side. Therefore shall you not give your daughters unto their sons, and their daughters shall you not take unto your sons, and seek not their peace and wealth for ever, that you may be strong, and enjoy the good in the land, and that you and your children may have the inheritance of it for evermore.
And after all this that is come upon us (because of our evil deeds and great trespass) you our God have spared our wickednesses, and have given us a deliverance as it is come to pass this day.
As for us, we have turned back, and have let go your commandments, to make contract with the people of these abominations. Will you then be wroth at us, till we be utterly consumed, so that nothing remain, and there be no deliverance? O' Lord God of Israel, you are righteous, for we remain yet escaped, as it is this day. Behold in your presence are we in our trespass, for because of it is there no standing before you.
The 10th Chapter
And when Esdras prayed after this manner, and knowledged, wept, and lay before the house of God, there resorted unto him out of Israel a very great congregation of men and women, and children: For the people wept very sore. And Sechaniah the son of Jehiel, one of the children of Elam, answered, and said unto Esdras: We have trespassed against the Lord our God, in that we have taken strange wives of the people of the land. Now there is hope yet in Israel concerning this, therefore let us make a covenant now with our God, that we shall put away all the wives (and such as are born of them) according to the counsel of the Lord, and of them that fear the commandment of our God, that we may do according to the law. Get you up therefore, for the matter belongs unto you. We will be with you, be of good comfort, and do it.
Then rose Esdras, and took an oath of the rulers, priests, and Levites, and all of Israel, that they should do according to this word: and they sware. And Esdras stood up before the house of God, and went in to the chamber of Johanan the son of Eliasib. And when he came over there, he ate no bread, nor drank water: for he mourned because of the transgression of them that had been in captivity.
And they caused a proclamation be made throughout Judah and Jerusalem, unto all the children which had been in captivity, that they should gather themselves together unto Jerusalem: And that whosoever came not within three days, according to the devise of the rulers and Elders, all his substance should be forfeited, and be put out from the congregation of the captivity.
Then all the men of Judah and Benjamin gathered themselves together unto Jerusalem in three days, that is on the twentieth day of the ninth month: and all the people sat in the street before of the house of God, and trembled because of this matter, and for the rain. And Esdras the priest stood up, and said unto them: you have transgressed, that have taken strange wives, to make the trespass of Israel yet more: confession now therefore unto the Lord God of your fathers, and do his pleasure, and separate yourselves from the people of the land, and from the strange wives. Then answered all the congregation and said with a loud voice: Let it be done as you have said. But the people are many, and it is a rainy weather, and they can not stand here without, neither is this a work of one day or two, for we are many that have offended in this transgression. Let us appoint our rulers therefore in all the congregation, that all they which have taken strange wives in our cities, may come at the time appointed, and the elders of every city and their Judges with them, till the wrath of our God be turned from us for this offense.
Then were appointed Jonathan the son of Asahel and Jahasia the son of Thekuah over this matter: And Mosollam and Sabathai the Levites helped them. And the children of the captivity did even so. And Esdras the priest, and the ancient heads through the house of their fathers, and all that were now rehearsed by name, separated themselves, and sat them down on the first day of the tenth month to examine this matter. And of the first day of the first month they *made an end of all the men that had taken strange wives. *That is, signified their business in nominating all the men. MN
And among the children of the priests there were men found that had taken strange wives, namely among the children of Jesua the son of Josedec and of his brethren, Maasiah, and Eliezer, and Jarib, and Godoliah. And they gave their hands there upon, that they would put away their wives: and for their trespass offering to give a ram for their trespass. Among the children of Emer, Hanani, and Zabadiah. Among the children of Harim, Maasiah, and Eltah, and Semeiah, Jehiel, and Osiah. Among the children of Phashur, Elioenai, Maasiah, Ismael, Nathanael, Josabed, and Eleasah. Among the Levites, Josabed, Semei, and Kelaiah, which same is Kalithah, Pathahiah, Judah and Eleazar. Among the singers, Eliasib. Among the porters, Selum, Telem, and Uri.
Of Israel, Among the children of Pharos, Remiah, and Jesiah, and Melchiah, Miamin, and Eleazar, Melchiah, and Banaiah. Among the children Elam, Mathaniah, Zachary, Jehiel, Abdi, Jerimoth and Eliah. Among the children of Zethua, Elioenai, Eliasib, Mathaniah, Jerimoth, Zabad and Aziza. Among the children of Bebai, Jehohanan, Hananiah, Zabai, and Athalai. Among the children of Beoni, Mosolam, Maluch, Adaiah, Jasub, Saal, and Jerimoth. Among the children of Pahas Moab, Edna, Calal, Banaiah, Maasia, Mathaniah, Bezeleel, Benui and Manasseh. Among the children of Harim, Eliezer, Jesiah, Melchiah, Semeiah, Simeon, Ben Jamin, Malluch, and Samariah. Among the children of Hasem, Mathnai, Mathasah, Zabed, Eliphelet, Jeremi, Manasseh, and Semei. Among the children of Bani, Madai, Amram, Huel, Baneah, Cheluhi, Badaiah, Uaniah, Maremoth, Eliasib, Mathaniah, Mathanai, Jaasan, Bani, Benui, Semeiah, Salamiah, Nathan, Adaiah, Machnadabai, Sasai, Sarai, Asarael, Selemiahu, Samariah, Selum, Amariah, and Joseph. Among the children of Nebo, Jaiel, Mathasiah, Zabed, Zabina, Jedai, Joel, Banaiah. All these had taken strange wives. And among the same wives there were some, that had born children.
The end of the first book of Esdras
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