Cyrus Helps the Exiles to Return
In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the Lord spoken by Jeremiah, the Lord moved the heart of Cyrus king of Persia to make a proclamation throughout his realm and also to put it in writing:
“This is what Cyrus king of Persia says:
“‘The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and he has appointed me to build a temple for him at Jerusalem in Judah. Any of his people among you may go up to Jerusalem in Judah and build the temple of the Lord, the God of Israel, the God who is in Jerusalem, and may their God be with them. And in any locality where survivors may now be living, the people are to provide them with silver and gold, with goods and livestock, and with freewill offerings for the temple of God in Jerusalem.’”
Then the family heads of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and Levites—everyone whose heart God had moved—prepared to go up and build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem. All their neighbors assisted them with articles of silver and gold, with goods and livestock, and with valuable gifts, in addition to all the freewill offerings.
Moreover, King Cyrus brought out the articles belonging to the temple of the Lord, which Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Jerusalem and had placed in the temple of his god.[a] Cyrus king of Persia had them brought by Mithredath the treasurer, who counted them out to Sheshbazzar the prince of Judah.
This was the inventory:
gold dishes 30 silver dishes 1,000 silver pans[b] 29 gold bowls 30 matching silver bowls 410 other articles 1,000
In all, there were 5,400 articles of gold and of silver. Sheshbazzar brought all these along with the exiles when they came up from Babylon to Jerusalem.
The List of the Exiles Who Returned
Now these are the people of the province who came up from the captivity of the exiles, whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had taken captive to Babylon (they returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to their own town, in company with Zerubbabel, Joshua, Nehemiah, Seraiah, Reelaiah, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispar, Bigvai, Rehum and Baanah):
The list of the men of the people of Israel:
the descendants of Parosh 2,172 of Shephatiah 372 of Arah 775 of Pahath-Moab (through the line of Jeshua and Joab) 2,812 of Elam 1,254 of Zattu 945 of Zakkai 760 of Bani 642 of Bebai 623 of Azgad 1,222 of Adonikam 666 of Bigvai 2,056 of Adin 454 of Ater (through Hezekiah) 98 of Bezai 323 of Jorah 112 of Hashum 223 of Gibbar 95
the men of Bethlehem 123 of Netophah 56 of Anathoth 128 of Azmaveth 42 of Kiriath Jearim,[a] Kephirah and Beeroth 743 of Ramah and Geba 621 of Mikmash 122 of Bethel and Ai 223 of Nebo 52 of Magbish 156 of the other Elam 1,254 of Harim 320 of Lod, Hadid and Ono 725 of Jericho 345 of Senaah 3,630
the descendants of Jedaiah (through the family of Jeshua) 973 of Immer 1,052 of Pashhur 1,247 of Harim 1,017
the descendants of Jeshua and Kadmiel (of the line of Hodaviah) 74
the descendants of Asaph 128
The gatekeepers of the temple:
the descendants of Shallum, Ater, Talmon, Akkub, Hatita and Shobai 139
The temple servants:
the descendants of Ziha, Hasupha, Tabbaoth, Keros, Siaha, Padon, Lebanah, Hagabah, Akkub, Hagab, Shalmai, Hanan, Giddel, Gahar, Reaiah, Rezin, Nekoda, Gazzam, Uzza, Paseah, Besai, Asnah, Meunim, Nephusim, Bakbuk, Hakupha, Harhur, Bazluth, Mehida, Harsha, Barkos, Sisera, Temah, Neziah and Hatipha
The descendants of the servants of Solomon:
the descendants of Sotai, Hassophereth, Peruda, Jaala, Darkon, Giddel, Shephatiah, Hattil, Pokereth-Hazzebaim and Ami
The temple servants and the descendants of the servants of Solomon 392
The following came up from the towns of Tel Melah, Tel Harsha, Kerub, Addon and Immer, but they could not show that their families were descended from Israel:
The descendants of Delaiah, Tobiah and Nekoda 652
And from among the priests:
The descendants of Hobaiah, Hakkoz and Barzillai (a man who had married a daughter of Barzillai the Gileadite and was called by that name).
These searched for their family records, but they could not find them and so were excluded from the priesthood as unclean. The governor ordered them not to eat any of the most sacred food until there was a priest ministering with the Urim and Thummim.
The whole company numbered 42,360, besides their 7,337 male and female slaves; and they also had 200 male and female singers. They had 736 horses, 245 mules, 435 camels and 6,720 donkeys.
- Ezra 2:25 See Septuagint (see also Neh. 7:29); Hebrew Kiriath Arim.