Ezra 1:1-11

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.1:7 Or gods 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 dishes30silver dishes1,000silver pans1:9 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain. 29gold bowls30matching silver bowls410other articles1,000

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.

Read More of Ezra 1

Ezra 2:1-67

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 Parosh2,172of Shephatiah372of Arah775of Pahath-Moab (through the line of Jeshua and Joab)2,812of Elam1,254of Zattu945of Zakkai760of Bani642of Bebai623of Azgad1,222of Adonikam666of Bigvai2,056of Adin454of Ater (through Hezekiah)98of Bezai323of Jorah112of Hashum223of Gibbar95

the men of Bethlehem123of Netophah56of Anathoth128of Azmaveth42of Kiriath Jearim,2:25 See Septuagint (see also Neh. 7:29); Hebrew Kiriath Arim. Kephirah and Beeroth743of Ramah and Geba621of Mikmash122of Bethel and Ai223of Nebo52of Magbish156of the other Elam1,254of Harim320of Lod, Hadid and Ono725of Jericho345of Senaah3,630

The priests:

the descendants of Jedaiah (through the family of Jeshua)973of Immer1,052of Pashhur1,247of Harim1,017

The Levites:

the descendants of Jeshua and Kadmiel (of the line of Hodaviah)74

The musicians:

the descendants of Asaph128

The gatekeepers of the temple:

the descendants ofShallum, Ater, Talmon,Akkub, Hatita and Shobai139

The temple servants:

the descendants ofZiha, 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 ofSotai, Hassophereth, Peruda,Jaala, Darkon, Giddel,Shephatiah, Hattil,Pokereth-Hazzebaim and Ami

The temple servants and the descendants of the servants of Solomon392

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 ofDelaiah, Tobiah and Nekoda652

And from among the priests:

The descendants ofHobaiah, 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.

Read More of Ezra 2