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CHAPTER 1 Nov.8
The Temple to Be Rebuilt
Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of Yahweh by the mouth of Jeremiah might be accomplished, Yahweh stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying, 2Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, ‘Yahweh, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and He has commanded me to build Him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. 3Whoever there is among you of all His people, may his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and build the house of Yahweh, the God of Israel (He is God), which is in Jerusalem. 4Whoever is left, in any place where he lives, let the men of his place help him with silver, with gold, with goods, and with animals, besides the freewill offering for God’s house which is in Jerusalem’.
Offerings for the Temple
5Then the heads of fathers’ households of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests, and the Levites, even all whose spirit God had stirred to go up, rose up to build the house of Yahweh which is in Jerusalem. 6All those who were around them strengthened their hands with vessels of silver, with gold, with goods, and with animals, and with precious things, besides all that was willingly offered. 7Also Cyrus the king brought forth the vessels of the house of Yahweh, which Nebuchadnezzar had brought out of Jerusalem, and had put in the house of his gods; 8even those, Cyrus king of Persia brought out by the hand of Mithredath the treasurer, and numbered them to Sheshbazzar, the prince of Judah. 9This is the number of them: thirty platters of gold, one thousand platters of silver, twenty-nine knives, 10thirty bowls of gold, silver bowls of a second sort four hundred and ten, and other vessels one thousand. 11All the vessels of gold and of silver were five thousand four hundred. Sheshbazzar brought all these up, when the captives were brought up from Babylon to Jerusalem.
CHAPTER 2 Nov.8
List of Those Who Returned from Exile
Now these are the children of the province, who went up out of the captivity of those who had been carried away, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away to Babylon, and who returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each one to his city; 2who came with Zerubbabel, Jeshua, Nehemiah, Seraiah, Reelaiah, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispar, Bigvai, Rehum, Baanah. The number of the men of the people of Israel: 3The children of Parosh, two thousand one hundred and seventy-two. 4The children of Shephatiah, three hundred and seventy-two. 5The children of Arah, seven hundred and seventy-five. 6The children of Pahathmoab, of the children of Jeshua and Joab, two thousand eight hundred and twelve. 7The children of Elam, one thousand two hundred and fifty-four. 8The children of Zattu, nine hundred and forty-five. 9The children of Zaccai, seven hundred and sixty. 10The children of Bani, six hundred and forty-two. 11The children of Bebai, six hundred and twenty-three. 12The children of Azgad, one thousand two hundred and twenty-two. 13The children of Adonikam, six hundred and sixty-six. 14The children of Bigvai, two thousand and fifty-six. 15The children of Adin, four hundred and fifty-four. 16The children of Ater, of Hezekiah, ninety-eight. 17The children of Bezai, three hundred and twenty-three. 18The children of Jorah, one hundred and twelve. 19The children of Hashum, two hundred and twenty-three. 20The children of Gibbar, ninety-five. 21The children of Bethlehem, one hundred and twenty-three. 22The men of Netophah, fifty-six. 23The men of Anathoth, one hundred and twenty-eight. 24The children of Azmaveth, forty-two. 25The children of Kiriath Arim, Chephirah, and Beeroth, seven hundred and forty-three. 26The children of Ramah and Geba, six hundred and twenty-one. 27The men of Michmas, one hundred and twenty-two. 28The men of Bethel and Ai, two hundred and twenty-three. 29The children of Nebo, fifty-two. 30The children of Magbish, one hundred and fifty-six. 31The children of the other Elam, one thousand two hundred and fifty-four. 32The children of Harim, three hundred and twenty. 33The children of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, seven hundred and twenty-five. 34The children of Jericho, three hundred and forty-five. 35The children of Senaah, three thousand six hundred and thirty. 36The priests: the children of Jedaiah, of the house of Jeshua, nine hundred and seventy-three. 37The children of Immer, one thousand and fifty-two. 38The children of Pashhur, one thousand two hundred and forty-seven. 39The children of Harim, one thousand and seventeen. 40The Levites: the children of Jeshua and Kadmiel, of the children of Hodaviah, seventy-four. 41The singers: the children of Asaph, one hundred and twenty-eight. 42The children of the porters: the children of Shallum, the children of Ater, the children of Talmon, the children of Akkub, the children of Hatita, the children of Shobai, in all one hundred and thirty-nine. 43The Nethinim: the children of Ziha, the children of Hasupha, the children of Tabbaoth, 44the children of Keros, the children of Siaha, the children of Padon, 45the children of Lebanah, the children of Hagabah, the children of Akkub, 46the children of Hagab, the children of Shamlai, the children of Hanan, 47the children of Giddel, the children of Gahar, the children of Reaiah, 48the children of Rezin, the children of Nekoda, the children of Gazzam, 49the children of Uzza, the children of Paseah, the children of Besai, 50the children of Asnah, the children of Meunim, the children of Nephisim, 51the children of Bakbuk, the children of Hakupha, the children of Harhur, 52the children of Bazluth, the children of Mehida, the children of Harsha, 53the children of Barkos, the children of Sisera, the children of Temah, 54the children of Neziah, the children of Hatipha. 55The children of Solomon’s servants: the children of Sotai, the children of Hassophereth, the children of Peruda, 56the children of Jaalah, the children of Darkon, the children of Giddel, 57the children of Shephatiah, the children of Hattil, the children of Pochereth Hazzebaim, the children of Ami. 58All the Nethinim, and the children of Solomon’s servants, were three hundred and ninety-two. 59These were those who went up from Tel Melah, Tel Harsha, Cherub, Addan, and Immer; but they could not show their fathers’ houses, and their genealogy, whether they were of Israel: 60the children of Delaiah, the children of Tobiah, the children of Nekoda, six hundred and fifty-two. 61Of the children of the priests: the children of Habaiah, the children of Hakkoz, the children of Barzillai, who took a wife of the daughters of Barzillai the Gileadite, and was called after their name. 62These sought their place among those who were registered by genealogy, but they were not found: therefore were they deemed polluted and put from the priesthood. 63The governor told them that they should not eat of the most holy things, until there stood up a priest with Urim and Thummim. 64The whole assembly together was forty-two thousand three hundred and sixty, 65besides their male servants and their female servants, of whom there were seven thousand three hundred and thirty-seven: and they had two hundred singing men and singing women. 66Their horses were seven hundred and thirty-six; their mules, two hundred and forty-five; 67their camels, four hundred and thirty-five; their donkeys, six thousand seven hundred and twenty.
More Offerings for the Temple
68Some of the heads of fathers’ households, when they came to the house of Yahweh which is in Jerusalem, offered willingly for God’s house to set it up in its place: 69they gave after their ability into the treasury of the work sixty-one thousand darics of gold, five thousand minas of silver and one hundred priests’ garments. 70So the priests, and the Levites, and some of the people, and the singers, and the porters, and the Nethinim, lived in their cities, and all Israel in their cities.
CHAPTER 3 Nov.9
Burnt Offerings Resume
When the seventh month had come and the children of Israel were in the cities, the people gathered themselves together as one man to Jerusalem. 2Then Jeshua the son of Jozadak stood up with his brothers the priests, and Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel and his brothers, and built the altar of the God of Israel, to offer burnt offerings thereon as it is written in the law of Moses the man of God. 3In spite of their fear because of the peoples of the surrounding lands, they set the altar on its base; and they offered burnt offerings on it to Yahweh, even burnt offerings morning and evening. 4They kept the feast of tents, as it is written, and offered the daily burnt offerings by number, according to the ordinance, as the duty of every day required; 5and afterwards the continual burnt offering, the offerings of the new moons, of all the set feasts of Yahweh that were consecrated, and of each one who willingly offered a freewill offering to Yahweh. 6From the first day of the seventh month, they began to offer burnt offerings to Yahweh; but the foundation of Yahweh’s temple was not yet laid. 7They also gave money to the masons, and to the carpenters. They also gave food, drink and oil to the people of Sidon and Tyre, to bring cedar trees from Lebanon to the sea, to Joppa, according to the grant that they had from Cyrus King of Persia.
The Rebuilding of the Temple Begins
8Now in the second year of their coming to God’s house at Jerusalem, in the second month, Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and the rest of their brothers the priests and the Levites, and all those who had come out of the captivity to Jerusalem, began the work and appointed the Levites, from twenty years old and upward, to have the oversight of the work of Yahweh’s house. 9Then Jeshua stood with his sons and his brothers, Kadmiel and his sons, the sons of Judah, together, having the oversight of the workmen in God’s house: the sons of Henadad, with their sons and their brothers the Levites. 10When the builders laid the foundation of Yahweh’s temple, they set the priests in their clothing with trumpets, with the Levites the sons of Asaph with cymbals, to praise Yahweh, according to the directions of David king of Israel. 11They sang to one another in praising and giving thanks to Yahweh: For He is good, for His grace endures forever toward Israel. All the people shouted with a great shout when they praised Yahweh, because the foundation of the house of Yahweh had been laid.
Joy and Weeping
12But many of the priests and Levites and heads of fathers’ households, the old men who had seen the first house, when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, wept with a loud voice. Many also shouted aloud for joy, 13so that the people could not discern the noise of the shout of joy from the noise of the weeping of the people; for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the noise was heard far away.
CHAPTER 4 Nov.9
Opposition to Rebuilding the Temple
Now when the adversaries of Judah and Benjamin heard that the children of the captivity were building a temple to Yahweh, the God of Israel; 2then they drew near to Zerubbabel, and to the heads of fathers’ households and said to them, Let us build with you; for we seek your God, as you do; and we sacrifice to Him since the days of Esar Haddon king of Assyria, who brought us up here. 3But Zerubbabel, and Jeshua, and the rest of the heads of fathers’ households of Israel, said to them, You have nothing in common with us in building a house to our God; but we ourselves together will build to Yahweh, the God of Israel, as king Cyrus the king of Persia has commanded us. 4Then the people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in building, 5and hired counsellors against them to frustrate their purpose, all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia.
A Letter Sent to the King of Persia
6In the reign of Ahasuerus, in the beginning of his reign, they wrote an accusation against the inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem. 7In the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel and the rest of his companions, to Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in Syrian, and set forth in the Syrian language. 8Rehum the chancellor and Shimshai the scribe wrote a letter against Jerusalem to Artaxerxes the king in this way: 9then Rehum the chancellor, and Shimshai the scribe, and the rest of their companions, the Dinaites, and the Apharsathchites, the Tarpelites, the Apharsites, the Archevites, the Babylonians, the Shushanchites, the Dehaites, the Elamites, 10and the rest of the nations whom the great and noble Osnappar brought over, and set in the city of Samaria, and in the rest of the country beyond the River, and so forth, wrote. 11This is the copy of the letter that they sent to Artaxerxes the king:
Opposition to Rebuilding Jerusalem
Your servants the men beyond the River, and so forth. 12Be it known to the king, that the Jews who came up from you have come to us to Jerusalem; they are building the rebellious and the bad city, and have finished the walls, and repaired the foundations. 13Be it known now to the king that if this city is built, and the walls finished, they will not pay tribute, custom, or toll, and in the end it will be hurtful to the kings. 14Now because we eat the salt of the palace, and it is not right for us to see the king’s dishonour, therefore have we sent and informed the king; 15that search may be made in the book of the records of your fathers: so you shall find in the book of the records, and know that this city is a rebellious city, and hurtful to kings and provinces, and that they have made rebellion within the same city from old time; for which cause this city was laid waste. 16We inform the king that if this city be built and the walls finished, because of this you shall have no portion beyond the River.
The King Orders the Rebuilding to Stop
17Then the king sent an answer to Rehum the chancellor, and to Shimshai the scribe, and to the rest of their companions who dwell in Samaria, and in the rest of the country beyond the River: Peace, and so forth. 18The letter which you sent to us has been plainly read before me. 19I decreed, and search has been made, and it is found that this city of old time has made insurrection against kings, and that rebellion and sedition have been made in it. 20There have been mighty kings also over Jerusalem, who have ruled over all the country beyond the River; and tribute, custom, and toll, was paid to them. 21Make a decree now to cause these men to cease, and that this city not be built, until a decree shall be made by me. 22Take heed that you not be slack herein: why should damage grow to the hurt of the kings? 23Then when the copy of king Artaxerxes’ letter was read before Rehum and Shimshai the scribe and their companions, they went in haste to Jerusalem to the Jews, and made them to cease by force and power. 24Then ceased the work of God’s house which is at Jerusalem; and it ceased until the second year of the reign of Darius king of Persia.
CHAPTER 5 Nov.10
Rebuilding the Temple Starts Again
Now the prophets, Haggai the prophet, and Zechariah the son of Iddo, prophesied to the Jews who were in Judah and Jerusalem; in the name of the God of Israel they prophesied to them. 2Then rose up Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and began to build God’s house which is at Jerusalem; and with them were the prophets of God, helping them. 3At the same time came to them Tattenai, the governor beyond the River, and Shetharbozenai, and their companions, and said thus to them, Who gave you a decree to build this house, and to finish this wall? 4Then we told them in this way, what the names of the men were who were making this building. 5But the eye of their God was on the elders of the Jews, and they did not make them cease, until the matter should come to Darius, and then answer should be returned by letter concerning it. 6This is the copy of the letter that Tattenai, the governor beyond the River, and Shetharbozenai, and his companions the Apharsachites, who were beyond the River, sent to Darius the king.
A Letter Sent to Darius
7They sent a letter to him, in which was written thus: To Darius the king, all peace. 8Be it known to the king, that we went into the province of Judah, to the house of the great God, which is built with great stones, and timber is laid in the walls; and this work goes on with diligence and prospers in their hands. 9Then we asked those elders, and said to them thus, Who gave you a decree to build this house, and to finish this wall? 10We asked them their names also, to inform you that we might write the names of the men who were at their head. 11Thus they returned us answer saying, We are the servants of the God of heaven and earth, and are building the house that was built these many years ago, which a great king of Israel built and finished. 12But after that our fathers had provoked the God of heaven to wrath, He gave them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the Chaldean, who destroyed this house, and carried the people away into Babylon. 13But in the first year of Cyrus king of Babylon, Cyrus the king made a decree to build this house of God. 14The gold and silver vessels also of God’s house, which Nebuchadnezzar took out of the temple that was in Jerusalem, and brought into the temple of Babylon, those Cyrus the king took out of the temple of Babylon, and they were delivered to one whose name was Sheshbazzar, whom he had made governor; 15and he said to him, ‘Take these vessels, go, put them in the temple that is in Jerusalem, and let God’s house be built in its place’. 16Then the same Sheshbazzar came, and laid the foundations of God’s house which is in Jerusalem: and since that time even until now has it been in building, and yet it is not completed. 17Now therefore, if it seem good to the king, let a search be made in the king’s treasure house, which is there at Babylon, whether it be so, that a decree was made of Cyrus the king to build this house of God at Jerusalem; and let the king send his pleasure to us concerning this matter.
CHAPTER 6 Nov.10
The Search for Cyrus’ Decree
Then Darius the king made a decree, and search was made in the house of the archives, where the treasures were laid up in Babylon. 2There was found at Achmetha, in the palace that is in the province of Media, a scroll, and therein was thus written for a record: 3In the first year of Cyrus the king, Cyrus the king made a decree: Concerning God’s house at Jerusalem, let the house be built, the place where they offer sacrifices, and let its foundations be strongly laid; its height sixty cubits, and its breadth sixty cubits; 4with three courses of great stones, and a course of new timber: and let the expenses be given out of the king’s house. 5Also let the gold and silver vessels of God’s house, which Nebuchadnezzar took forth out of the temple which is at Jerusalem and brought to Babylon, be restored, and brought again to the temple which is at Jerusalem, each one to its place; and you shall put them in God’s house.
A New Decree for the Work to Continue
6Now therefore, Tattenai, governor beyond the River, Shetharbozenai, and your companions the Apharsachites, who are beyond the River, you must not hinder this matter. 7Leave the work of this house of God alone; let the governor of the Jews and the elders of the Jews build this house of God in its place. 8Moreover I make a decree what you shall do to these elders of the Jews for the building of this house of God: that of the king’s goods, even of the tribute beyond the River, expenses be given with all diligence to these men, that they be not hindered. 9That which they have need of, both young bulls, and rams, and lambs, for burnt offerings to the God of heaven; also wheat, salt, wine, and oil, according to the word of the priests who are at Jerusalem, let it be given them day by day without fail; 10that they may offer sacrifices of pleasant aroma to the God of heaven, and pray for the life of the king and of his sons. 11Also I have made a decree, that whoever shall alter this word, let a beam be pulled out from his house, and let him be lifted up and fastened thereon; and let his house be made a dunghill for this: 12and the God who has caused His name to dwell there overthrow all kings and peoples who shall put forth their hand to alter the same, to destroy this house of God which is at Jerusalem. I Darius have made a decree; let it be done with all diligence. 13Then Tattenai, the governor beyond the River, Shetharbozenai, and their companions, because Darius the king had sent a decree, did accordingly with all diligence. 14The elders of the Jews built and prospered, through the prophesying of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo. They built and finished it, according to the commandment of the God of Israel, and according to the decree of Cyrus, and Darius, and Artaxerxes king of Persia. 15This house was finished on the third day of the month Adar, which was in the sixth year of the reign of Darius the king.
Joyous Dedication of the Temple
16The children of Israel, the priests, and the Levites, and the rest of the children of the captivity, kept the dedication of this house of God with joy. 17They offered at the dedication of this house of God one hundred bulls, two hundred rams, four hundred lambs; and for a sin offering for all Israel, twelve male goats, according to the number of the tribes of Israel. 18They set the priests in their divisions, and the Levites in their courses, for the service of God, which is at Jerusalem; as it is written in the book of Moses. 19The children of the captivity kept the Passover on the fourteenth day of the first month. 20For the priests and the Levites had purified themselves together; all of them were pure: and they killed the Passover for all the children of the captivity, and for their brothers the priests, and for themselves. 21The children of Israel who had come again out of the captivity, and all such as had separated themselves to them from the filthiness of the nations of the land, to seek Yahweh, the God of Israel, ate, 22and kept the feast of unleavened bread seven days with joy: for Yahweh had made them joyful, and had turned the heart of the king of Assyria to them, to strengthen their hands in the work of God’s house, the God of Israel.
CHAPTER 7 Nov.11
Ezra Comes to Jerusalem
Now after these things, in the reign of Artaxerxes king of Persia, Ezra the son of Seraiah, the son of Azariah, the son of Hilkiah, 2the son of Shallum, the son of Zadok, the son of Ahitub, 3the son of Amariah, the son of Azariah, the son of Meraioth, 4the son of Zerahiah, the son of Uzzi, the son of Bukki, 5the son of Abishua, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the chief priest; 6this Ezra went up from Babylon: and he was a willing scribe in the law of Moses, which Yahweh, the God of Israel, had given; and the king granted him all his request, according to the hand of Yahweh his God on him. 7There went up some of the children of Israel, and of the priests, the Levites, the singers, the porters and the Nethinim, to Jerusalem, in the seventh year of Artaxerxes the king. 8He came to Jerusalem in the fifth month, which was in the seventh year of the king. 9For on the first day of the first month began he to go up from Babylon; and on the first day of the fifth month came he to Jerusalem, according to the good hand of his God on him. 10For Ezra had set his heart to seek the law of Yahweh, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and ordinances.
The Letter of Artaxerxes
11Now this is the copy of the letter that the king Artaxerxes gave to Ezra the priest, the scribe, even the scribe of the words of the commandments of Yahweh, and of His statutes to Israel: 12Artaxerxes, king of kings, to Ezra the priest, the scribe of the law of the God of heaven, perfect peace and so forth. 13I make a decree, that all those of the people of Israel, and their priests and the Levites, in my realm, who are minded of their own free will to go to Jerusalem, go with you. 14Because you are sent of the king and his seven counsellors, to inquire concerning Judah and Jerusalem, according to the law of your God which is in your hand, 15and to carry the silver and gold, which the king and his counsellors have freely offered to the God of Israel whose habitation is in Jerusalem, 16and all the silver and gold that you shall find in all the province of Babylon, with the freewill offering of the people, and of the priests, offering willingly for the house of their God which is in Jerusalem; 17therefore you shall with all diligence buy with this money bulls, rams, lambs, with their meal offerings and their drink offerings, and shall offer them on the altar of the house of your God which is in Jerusalem. 18Whatever shall seem good to you and to your brothers to do with the rest of the silver and the gold, do that after the will of your God. 19The vessels that are given to you for the service of the house of your God, deliver before the God of Jerusalem. 20Whatever more shall be needful for the house of your God, which you shall have occasion to grant, grant it out of the king’s treasure house. 21I, even I Artaxerxes the king, do make a decree to all the treasurers who are beyond the River, that whatever Ezra the priest, the scribe of the law of the God of heaven, shall require of you, it be done with all diligence, 22to one hundred talents of silver, one hundred measures of wheat, one hundred baths of wine, one hundred baths of oil, and salt without prescribing how much. 23Whatever is commanded by the God of heaven, let it be done exactly for the house of the God of heaven; for why should there be wrath against the realm of the king and his sons? 24Also we inform you, that concerning any of the priests and Levites, the singers, porters, Nethinim, or servants of this house of God, it shall not be lawful to impose tribute, custom, or toll on them.25You, Ezra, after the wisdom of your God which is in your hand, appoint magistrates and judges who may judge all the people who are beyond the River, all such as know the laws of your God; and teach him who doesn’t know them. 26Whoever will not do the law of your God, and the law of the king, let judgement be executed on him with all diligence, whether it be to death, or to banishment, or to confiscation of goods, or to imprisonment.
27Blessed be Yahweh, the God of our fathers, who has put such a thing as this in the king’s heart, to beautify the house of Yahweh which is in Jerusalem; 28and has extended grace to me before the king, his counsellors and before all the king’s mighty princes. I was strengthened according to the hand of Yahweh my God upon me, and I gathered together out of Israel chief men to go up with me.
CHAPTER 8 Nov.12
The People Who Returned with Ezra
Now these are the heads of their fathers’ households, and this is the genealogy of those who went up with me from Babylon, in the reign of Artaxerxes the king: 2Of the sons of Phinehas, Gershom. Of the sons of Ithamar, Daniel. Of the sons of David, Hattush. 3Of the sons of Shecaniah, of the sons of Parosh, Zechariah; and with him were reckoned by genealogy of the males one hundred and fifty. 4Of the sons of Pahathmoab, Eliehoenai the son of Zerahiah; and with him two hundred males. 5Of the sons of Shecaniah, the son of Jahaziel; and with him three hundred males. 6Of the sons of Adin, Ebed the son of Jonathan; and with him fifty males. 7Of the sons of Elam, Jeshaiah the son of Athaliah; and with him seventy males. 8Of the sons of Shephatiah, Zebadiah the son of Michael; and with him eighty males. 9Of the sons of Joab, Obadiah the son of Jehiel; and with him two hundred and eighteen males. 10Of the sons of Shelomith, the son of Josiphiah; and with him one hundred and sixty males. 11Of the sons of Bebai, Zechariah the son of Bebai; and with him twenty-eight males. 12Of the sons of Azgad, Johanan the son of Hakkatan; and with him one hundred and ten males. 13Of the sons of Adonikam, who were the last; and these are their names: Eliphelet, Jeuel, and Shemaiah; and with them sixty males. 14Of the sons of Bigvai, Uthai and Zabbud; and with them seventy males.
Ezra Finds Levites for the Temple
15I gathered them together to the river that runs to Ahava; and there we encamped three days: and I viewed the people and the priests, and found there none of the sons of Levi. 16Then sent I for Eliezer, for Ariel, for Shemaiah, and for Elnathan, and for Jarib, and for Elnathan, and for Nathan, and for Zechariah, and for Meshullam, chief men; also for Joiarib, and for Elnathan, who were teachers. 17I sent them forth to Iddo the chief at the place Casiphia; and I told them what they should tell Iddo, and his brothers the Nethinim, at the place Casiphia, that they should bring to us ministers for the house of our God. 18According to the good hand of our God on us they brought us a man of discretion, of the sons of Mahli, the son of Levi, the son of Israel; and Sherebiah, with his sons and his brothers, eighteen; 19and Hashabiah, and with him Jeshaiah of the sons of Merari, his brothers and their sons, twenty; 20and of the Nethinim, whom David and the princes had given for the service of the Levites, two hundred and twenty Nethinim: all of them were mentioned by name.
Fasting and Prayer
21Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God, to seek of Him a straight way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance. 22For I was ashamed to ask of the king a band of soldiers and horsemen to help us against the enemy in the way, because we had spoken to the king saying, The hand of our God is on all those who seek Him for good; but His power and His wrath is against all those who forsake Him. 23So we fasted and begged our God for this: and He was entreated of us.
Offerings for the Temple
24Then I set apart twelve of the chiefs of the priests, even Sherebiah, Hashabiah, and ten of their brothers with them, 25and weighed to them the silver, and the gold, and the vessels, even the offering for the house of our God, which the king, and his counsellors, and his princes, and all Israel there present, had offered: 26I weighed into their hand six hundred fifty talents of silver, and silver vessels one hundred talents; of gold one hundred talents; 27and twenty bowls of gold, of one thousand darics; and two vessels of fine bright brass, precious as gold. 28I said to them, You are holy to Yahweh, and the vessels are holy; and the silver and the gold are a freewill offering to Yahweh, the God of your fathers. 29Guard and keep them, until you weigh them before the chiefs of the priests and the Levites, and the princes of the fathers’ households of Israel, at Jerusalem, in the rooms of the house of Yahweh. 30So the priests and the Levites received the weight of the silver and the gold, and the vessels, to bring them to Jerusalem to the house of our God.
Return to Jerusalem
31Then we departed from the river Ahava on the twelfth day of the first month, to go to Jerusalem: and the hand of our God was on us, and He delivered us from the hand of the enemy and the bandit by the way. 32We came to Jerusalem, and stayed there three days. 33On the fourth day the silver and the gold and the vessels were weighed in the house of our God into the hand of Meremoth the son of Uriah the priest; and with him was Eleazar the son of Phinehas; and with them was Jozabad the son of Jeshua, and Noadiah the son of Binnui, the Levite. 34Everything was counted and weighed: and all the weight was written at that time. 35The children of the captivity, who had come out of exile, offered burnt offerings to the God of Israel, twelve bulls for all Israel, ninety-six rams, seventy-seven lambs and twelve male goats for a sin offering: all this was a burnt offering to Yahweh. 36They delivered the king’s commissions to the king’s satraps, and to the governors beyond the River: and they furthered the people and God’s house.
CHAPTER 9 Nov.13
Ezra Learns of Mixed Marriages
Now when these things were done, the princes drew near to me saying, The people of Israel, and the priests and the Levites, have not separated themselves from the peoples of the lands and are following their abominations, even those of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites. 2For they have taken of their daughters for themselves and for their sons, so that the holy seed have mixed themselves with the peoples of the lands. Yes, the hand of the princes and rulers has been chief in this trespass.
Ezra Is Distressed and Prays
3When I heard this thing, I tore my garment and my robe, and plucked off the hair of my head and of my beard, and sat down confounded. 4Then were assembled to me all who trembled at the words of the God of Israel, because of the transgression of those that had been carried away; and I sat confounded until the evening offering. 5At the evening offering I arose up from my humiliation, even with my garment and my robe torn; and I fell on my knees, and spread out my hands to Yahweh my God; 6and I said, My God, I am ashamed and blush to lift up my face to You, my God; for our iniquities have increased over our head, and our guiltiness has grown up to the heavens. 7Since the days of our fathers we have been exceeding guilty to this day; and for our iniquities we, our kings and our priests, have been delivered into the hand of the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity, to plunder and to confusion of face, as it is this day. 8Now for a little moment grace has been shown from Yahweh our God, to leave us a remnant to escape, and to give us a nail in His holy place, that our God may lighten our eyes, and give us a little reviving in our bondage. 9For we are bondservants; yet our God has not forsaken us in our bondage, but has extended loving kindness to us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to give us a reviving, to set up the house of our God, to repair its ruins, and to give us a wall in Judah and in Jerusalem. 10Now, our God, what shall we say after this? For we have forsaken Your commandments 11which You have commanded by Your servants the prophets saying, ‘The land, to which you go to possess it, is an unclean land through the uncleanness of the peoples of the lands, through their abominations, which have filled it from one end to another with their filthiness. 12Now therefore don’t give your daughters to their sons, neither take their daughters to your sons, nor seek their peace or their prosperity forever; that you may be strong, and eat the good of the land, and leave it for an inheritance to your children forever’. 13After all that has come upon us for our evil deeds and for our great guilt, since You, our God, has punished us less than our iniquities deserve, and has given us such a remnant, 14shall we again break Your commandments, and join in affinity with the peoples that do these abominations? Wouldn’t You be angry with us until You had consumed us, so that there should be no remnant, nor any to escape? 15Yahweh, the God of Israel, You are righteous; for we are left a remnant that has escaped, as it is this day. Behold, we are before You in our guiltiness; for we cannot remain before You because of this.
CHAPTER 10 Nov.14
A Plan to End Mixed Marriages
Now while Ezra prayed and made confession, weeping and casting himself down before God’s house, there was gathered together to him out of Israel a very great assembly of men and women and children; for the people wept very bitterly. 2Shecaniah the son of Jehiel, one of the sons of Elam, answered Ezra, We have trespassed against our God, and have married foreign women of the peoples of the land. Yet now there is hope for Israel concerning this thing. 3Now therefore let us make a covenant with our God to put away all the wives, and such as are born of them, according to the counsel of my lord, and of those who tremble at the commandment of our God. Let it be done according to the law. 4Arise; for the matter belongs to you, and we are with you. Be courageous, and do it. 5Then Ezra arose, and made the chiefs of the priests, the Levites, and all Israel, to swear that they would do according to this word. So they swore. 6Then Ezra rose up from before God’s house, and went into the chamber of Jehohanan the son of Eliashib: and when he came there, he ate no bread, nor drank water; for he mourned because of the trespass of the captives. 7They made proclamation throughout Judah and Jerusalem to all the children of the captivity, that they should gather themselves together to Jerusalem; 8and that whoever didn’t come within three days, according to the counsel of the princes and the elders, all his substance should be forfeited, and himself separated from the assembly of the captives. 9Then all the men of Judah and Benjamin gathered themselves together to Jerusalem within the three days; it was the ninth month, on the twentieth day of the month: and all the people sat in the broad place before God’s house, trembling because of this matter, and because of the great rain. 10Ezra the priest stood up and said to them, You have trespassed, and have married foreign women, to increase the guilt of Israel. 11Now therefore make confession to Yahweh, the God of your fathers, and do His will; and separate yourselves from the peoples of the land, and from the foreign women. 12Then all the assembly answered with a loud voice, As you have said concerning us, so must we do. 13But the people are many, and it is a time of much rain, and we are not able to stand outside; neither is this a work of one day or two; for we have greatly transgressed in this matter. 14Let now our princes be appointed for all the assembly, and let all those who are in our cities who have married foreign women come at appointed times, and with them the elders of every city, and its judges, until the fierce wrath of our God be turned from us, until this matter is resolved. 15Only Jonathan the son of Asahel and Jahzeiah the son of Tikvah stood up against this; and Meshullam and Shabbethai the Levite helped them. 16The children of the captivity did so. Ezra the priest, with certain heads of fathers’ households, after their fathers’ houses, and all of them by their names, were set apart; and they sat down in the first day of the tenth month to examine the matter. 17They made an end with all the men who had married foreign women by the first day of the first month.
Those Who Had Married Foreign Wives
18Among the sons of the priests there were found who had married foreign women: of the sons of Jeshua, the son of Jozadak, and his brothers, Maaseiah, and Eliezer, and Jarib, and Gedaliah. 19They gave their hand that they would put away their wives; and being guilty, they offered a ram of the flock for their guilt. 20Of the sons of Immer: Hanani and Zebadiah. 21Of the sons of Harim: Maaseiah, and Elijah, and Shemaiah, and Jehiel, and Uzziah. 22Of the sons of Pashhur: Elioenai, Maaseiah, Ishmael, Nethanel, Jozabad, and Elasah. 23Of the Levites: Jozabad, and Shimei, and Kelaiah (the same is Kelita), Pethahiah, Judah, and Eliezer. 24Of the singers: Eliashib. Of the porters: Shallum, and Telem, and Uri. 25Of Israel: Of the sons of Parosh: Ramiah, and Izziah, and Malchijah, and Mijamin, and Eleazar, and Malchijah, and Benaiah. 26Of the sons of Elam: Mattaniah, Zechariah, and Jehiel, and Abdi, and Jeremoth, and Elijah. 27Of the sons of Zattu: Elioenai, Eliashib, Mattaniah, and Jeremoth, and Zabad, and Aziza. 28Of the sons of Bebai: Jehohanan, Hananiah, Zabbai, Athlai. 29Of the sons of Bani: Meshullam, Malluch, and Adaiah, Jashub, and Sheal, Jeremoth. 30Of the sons of Pahathmoab: Adna, and Chelal, Benaiah, Maaseiah, Mattaniah, Bezalel, and Binnui, and Manasseh. 31Of the sons of Harim: Eliezer, Isshijah, Malchijah, Shemaiah, Shimeon, 32Benjamin, Malluch, Shemariah. 33Of the sons of Hashum: Mattenai, Mattattah, Zabad, Eliphelet, Jeremai, Manasseh, Shimei. 34Of the sons of Bani: Maadai, Amram, and Uel, 35Benaiah, Bedeiah, Cheluhi, 36Vaniah, Meremoth, Eliashib, 37Mattaniah, Mattenai, and Jaasu, 38and Bani, and Binnui, Shimei, 39and Shelemiah, and Nathan, and Adaiah, 40Machnadebai, Shashai, Sharai, 41Azarel, and Shelemiah, Shemariah, 42Shallum, Amariah, Joseph. 43Of the sons of Nebo: Jeiel, Mattithiah, Zabad, Zebina, Iddo, and Joel, Benaiah. 44All these had taken foreign wives; and some of them had wives by whom they had children.
CHAPTER 1 Jun. 20
The Family Background of Ruth
In the days when the judges judged, there was a famine in the land. A man of Bethlehem Judah went with his wife and two sons to live in the country of Moab. 2The name of the man was Elimelech; his wife’s, Naomi; his two sons’, Mahlon and Chilion. They were Ephrathites of Bethlehem Judah. They came into the country of Moab, and stayed there. 3Elimelech, Naomi’s husband, died; and she was left, and her two sons. 4The sons took wives of the women of Moab; the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other was Ruth. They lived there about ten years. 5Mahlon and Chilion both died, and the woman was bereaved of her two children and of her husband. 6Then she arose with her daughters-in-law, to return from the country of Moab; for she had heard in the country of Moab how that Yahweh had visited His people in giving them bread. 7She left the place where she was, and her two daughters-in-law went with her. They began the journey to the land of Judah. 8Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, Go, return each of you to your mother’s house, Yahweh deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead, and with me. 9Yahweh grant you that you may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband. Then she kissed them, and they lifted up their voice, and wept. 10They said to her, No, but we will return with you to your people. 11Naomi said, Go back, my daughters. Why do you want to go with me? Do I still have sons in my womb, that they may be your husbands? 12Go back, my daughters, go your way; for I am too old to have a husband. If I should say, ‘I have hope’, if I should even have a husband tonight, and should also bear sons; 13would you then wait until they were grown? Would you then refrain from having husbands? No, my daughters, for it grieves me much for your sakes, for the hand of Yahweh has gone out against me.
Ruth Returns with Naomi to Judah
14They lifted up their voices, and wept again; and Orpah kissed her mother-in-law farewell, but Ruth stayed with her. 15She said, Behold, your sister-in-law has gone back to her people, and to her god. Follow your sister-in-law. 16Ruth said, Don’t entreat me to leave you, and to return from following after you, for where you go, I will go; and where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God; 17where you die, will I die, and there will I be buried. Yahweh do so to me, and more also, if anything but death part you and me. 18When she saw that she was steadfastly minded to go with her, she stopped speaking to her. 19So those two travelled to Bethlehem. When they had come to Bethlehem, it happened that all the city was agitated about them, and they asked, Is this Naomi? 20She said to them, Don’t call me Naomi. Call me Mara; for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. 21I went out full, and Yahweh has brought me home again empty. Why do you call me Naomi, since Yahweh has testified against me, and the Almighty has afflicted me? 22So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess her daughter-in-law with her, who returned out of the country of Moab: and they came to Bethlehem in the beginning of the barley harvest.
CHAPTER 2 Jun. 20
Ruth Meets Boaz
Naomi had a kinsman of her husband’s, a mighty man of wealth, of the family of Elimelech, whose name was Boaz. 2Ruth the Moabitess said to Naomi, Let me now go to the field, and glean among the ears of grain after him in whose sight I shall find grace. She said to her, Go, my daughter. 3She went, and came and gleaned in the field behind the reapers: and she happened to come to the portion of the field belonging to Boaz, who was of the family of Elimelech. 4Behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem and said to the reapers, Yahweh be with you! They answered him, Yahweh bless you! 5Then Boaz said to his servant who was set over the reapers, Whose young woman is this? 6The servant who was set over the reapers answered, It is the Moabite woman who came back with Naomi out of the country of Moab. 7She said, ‘Please let me glean and gather after the reapers among the sheaves’. So she came, and has continued even from the morning until now, although she stayed a little in the house. 8Then Boaz said to Ruth, Listen, my daughter: Don’t go to glean in another field, and don’t go away from here, but stay here close to my maidens. 9Let your eyes be on the field that they reap, and go after them. Haven’t I commanded the young men not to touch you? When you are thirsty, go to the vessels, and drink from that which the young men have drawn. 10Then she fell on her face and bowed herself to the ground, and said to him, Why have I found grace in your sight, that you should take knowledge of me, since I am a foreigner? 11Boaz answered her, I have come to know all that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband; and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth, and have come to a people that you didn’t know before. 12May Yahweh repay your work, and a full reward be given you from Yahweh, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge. 13Then she said, Let me find grace in your sight, my lord, because you have comforted me, and because you have spoken to the heart of your handmaid, although I am not as one of your handmaids. 14At meal time Boaz said to her, Come here, and eat of the bread, and dip your morsel in the wine. She sat beside the reapers, and they reached her parched grain, and she ate, and was satisfied, and left some of it. 15When she had risen up to glean, Boaz commanded his young men saying, Let her glean even among the sheaves, and don’t reproach her. 16Also pull out some for her from the bundles, and leave it; let her glean, and don’t rebuke her. 17So she gleaned in the field until evening; and she beat out that which she had gleaned, and it was about an ephah of barley. 18She carried it, and went into the city where her mother-in-law saw what she had gleaned and she brought out and gave to her that which she had left after she herself had enough to eat. 19Her mother-in-law said to her, Where have you gleaned today? Where have you worked? Blessed be he who took notice of you! She showed her mother-in-law with whom she had worked and said, The man’s name with whom I worked today is Boaz. 20Naomi said to her daughter-in-law, Blessed be he of Yahweh, Who has not left off His grace to the living and to the dead. Naomi said to her, The man is a close relative to us, one of our near kinsmen. 21Ruth the Moabitess said, Yes, he said to me, ‘You shall stay close to my young men, until they have ended all my harvest’. 22Naomi said to Ruth her daughter-in-law, It is good, my daughter, that you go out with his maidens, and that they not meet you in any other field. 23So she stayed close to the maidens of Boaz, to glean to the end of barley harvest and of wheat harvest; and she lived with her mother-in-law.
CHAPTER 3 Jun. 21
Naomi's Bold Plan for Ruth and Boaz
Naomi her mother-in-law said to her, My daughter, shall I not seek rest for you, that it may be well with you? 2Now isn’t Boaz our kinsman, with whose maidens you were? Behold, he winnows barley tonight in the threshing floor. 3Therefore wash yourself, anoint yourself, get dressed up, and go down to the threshing floor, but don’t make yourself known to the man until he has finished eating and drinking. 4It shall be, when he lies down, that you shall note the place where he shall lie, and you shall go in, uncover his feet, and lay down; then he will tell you what you shall do. 5She said to her, All that you say I will do. 6She went down to the threshing floor, and did according to all that her mother-in-law told her. 7When Boaz had eaten and drunk and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain. She came softly, uncovered his feet, and laid herself down. 8It happened at midnight, that the man was startled and turned himself; and noticed a woman lay at his feet. 9He said, Who are you? She answered, I am Ruth your handmaid. Therefore spread your skirt over your handmaid; for you are a near kinsman. 10He said, Blessed are you by Yahweh, my daughter. You have shown more grace in the latter end than at the beginning, inasmuch as you didn’t go after young men, whether poor or rich. 11Now, my daughter, don’t be afraid; I will do to you all that you say; for all my people in this city know that you are a worthy woman. 12Now it is true that I am a near kinsman; however there is a kinsman nearer than I. 13Stay this night, and it shall be in the morning, that if he will perform for you the part of a kinsman, so be it; let him do the kinsman’s part. But if he will not do the part of a kinsman for you, then will I do the part of a kinsman for you, as Yahweh lives. Lie down until the morning.
Ruth Returns to Naomi
14She lay at his feet until the morning. She rose up in the dark; for he said, Let it not be known that a woman came to the threshing floor. 15He said, Bring the mantle that is on you, and hold it. She held it; and he measured six measures of barley, and laid it on her; and he went into the city. 16When she came to her mother-in-law, she said, How did it go, my daughter? She told her all that the man had done to her. 17She said, He gave me these six measures of barley; for he said, ‘Don’t go empty to your mother-in-law’. 18Then she said, Sit still, my daughter, until you know how the matter will end; for the man will not rest, until he has finished the thing this day.
CHAPTER 4 Jun. 21
Boaz Redeems Naomi's Land and Ruth
Now Boaz went up to the gate and sat down there. When the near kinsman of whom Boaz spoke came by he said to him, Come over here, friend, and sit down! He turned aside, and sat down. 2He took ten men of the elders of the city, and said, Sit down here. They sat down. 3He said to the near kinsman: Naomi, who has come back out of the country of Moab, is selling the parcel of land, which was our brother Elimelech’s. 4I thought to disclose it to you saying, ‘Buy it in the presence of those who sit here, and of the elders of my people’. If you will redeem it, redeem it; but if you will not redeem it, then let me know. You have first right to redeem it; and I am next in line. He said, I will redeem it. 5Then Boaz said, On the day you buy the field from the hand of Naomi, you must buy it also from Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead on his inheritance. 6The near kinsman said, I can’t redeem it for myself, otherwise I will spoil my own inheritance. Take my right of redemption for yourself; for I can’t redeem it. 7Now this was the custom in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning exchanging, to confirm all things: a man took off his shoe, and gave it to his neighbour; and this was the way of affirmation in Israel. 8So the near kinsman said to Boaz, Buy it for yourself. He took off his shoe. 9Boaz said to the elders and to all the people, You are witnesses this day, that I have bought all that was Elimelech’s, and all that was Chilion’s and Mahlon’s, from the hand of Naomi. 10Moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, I have purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead on his inheritance, that the name of the dead not be cut off from among his brothers, and from the gate of his place. You are witnesses this day. 11All the people who were in the gate and the elders said, We are witnesses. May Yahweh make the woman who has come into your house like Rachel and like Leah, who built the house of Israel; and treat you worthily in Ephrathah, and bring you fame in Bethlehem. 12Let your house be like the house of Perez, whom Tamar bore to Judah, of the seed which Yahweh shall give you of this young woman.
Boaz Marries Ruth
13So Boaz took Ruth, and she became his wife; and he went in to her, and Yahweh gave her conception, and she bore a son. 14The women said to Naomi, Blessed be Yahweh, who has not left you this day without a near kinsman; and let his name be famous in Israel. 15He shall be to you a restorer of life, and sustain you in your old age, for your daughter-in-law, who loves you, who is better to you than seven sons, has borne him. 16Naomi took the child and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse to it. 17The neighbouring women gave him a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi! And they named him Obed. He is the father of Jesse, the father of David. 18Now this is the history of the generations of Perez: Perez became the father of Hezron, 19and Hezron became the father of Ram, and Ram became the father of Amminadab, 20and Amminadab became the father of Nahshon, and Nahshon became the father of Salmon, 21and Salmon became the father of Boaz, and Boaz became the father of Obed, 22and Obed became the father of Jesse, and Jesse became the father of David.