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The Oxford Study Bible Study Bible supplemented with commentary from scholars of various religions.

Chapter 5

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1 AAFTER this the heads of families, tribe by tribe, were chosen to go up to Jerusalem with their wives, their sons and daughters, their male and female slaves, and their pack-animals. 2Darius dispatched a thousand horsemen to escort them safely there, with a band of drums and flutes, 3to which all their kinsmen danced. So he sent them off with their escort.

4These are the names of the men who went up to Jerusalem, arranged according to their families and tribes and their allotted duties: 5the priests, sons of Phineas son of Aaron, with Jeshua son of Josedek, son of Saraeas, and Joakim son of Zerubbabel, son of Salathiel, of the house of David of the line of Phares of the tribe of Judah; 6it was Zerubbabel who spoke wise words before King Darius of Persia. This was in the second year of his reign, in Nisan the first month.

7These are the men from Judaea who returned from captivity and exile, those whom King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon had taken to Babylon. 8Each of them returned to his own town, whether to Jerusalem or elsewhere in Judaea. They were led by Zerubbabel and Jeshua, Nehemiah, Zaraeas, Resaeas, Enenius, Mardochaeus, Beelsarus, Aspharasus, Reelias, Roimus, and Baana.

9The number of those of the nation who returned with their leaders was: the line of Phoros two thousand one hundred and seventy-two; the line of Saphat four hundred and seventy-two; 10the line of Ares seven hundred and fifty-six; 11the line of Phaathmoab, belonging to the line of Jeshua and Joab, two thousand eight hundred and twelve; 12the line of Olamus one thousand two hundred and fifty-four; the line of Zathui nine hundred and forty-five; the line of Chorbe seven hundred and five; the line of Banei six hundred and forty-eight; 13the line of Bebae six hundred and twenty-three; the line of Argai one thousand three hundred and twenty-two; 14the line of Adonikam six hundred and sixty-seven; the line of Bagoi two thousand and sixty-six; the line of Adinus four hundred and fifty-four; 15the line of Ater son of Hezekias ninety-two; the line of Keilan and Azetas sixty-seven; the line of Azurus four hundred and thirty-two; 16the line of Annias one hundred and one; the line of Arom and the line of Bassa three hundred and twenty-three; the line of Arsiphurith one hundred and twelve; 17the line of Baeterus three thousand and five. The men of Bethlomon one hundred and twenty-three; 18the men of Netophae fifty-five; the men of Anathoth one hundred and fifty-eight; the men of Bethasmoth forty-two; 19the men of Cariathiarius twenty-five; the men of Caphira and Beroth seven hundred and forty-three; 20the Chadiasans and Ammidaeans four hundred and twenty-two; the men of Kirama and Gabbes six hundred and twenty- one; 21the men of Macalon one hundred and twenty-two; the men of Betolio fifty-two; the line of Niphis one hundred and fifty-six; 22the line of Calamolalus and Onus seven hundred and twenty-five; the line of Jerechus three hundred and forty-five; 23the line of Sanaas three thousand three hundred and thirty.

24The priests: the line of Jeddu son of Jeshua, belonging to the line of Anasib, nine hundred and seventy-two; the line of Emmeruth one thousand and fifty-two; 25the line of Phassurus one thousand two hundred and forty-seven; the line of Charme one thousand and seventeen.

26The Levites: the line of Joshua, Cadmielus, Bannus, and Sudius seventy-four. 27The temple singers: the line of Asaph one hundred and forty-eight.

28The door-keepers: the line of Salum, of Atar, of Tolman, of Dacubi, of Ateta, of Sabi, in all one hundred and thirty-nine.

29The temple servitors: the line of Esau, of Asipha, of Taboth, of Keras, of Soua, of Phaleas, of Labana, of Aggaba, 30of Acud, of Uta, of Ketab, of Gaba, of Subai, of Anan, of Cathua, of Geddur, 31of Jairus, of Desan, of Noeba, of Chaseba, of Gazera, of Ozius, of Phinoe, of Asara, of Basthae, of Asana, of Maani, of Naphisi, of Acum, of Achipha, of Asur, of Pharakim, of Baaloth, 32of Meedda, of Coutha, of Charea, of Barchue, of Serar, of Thomi, of Nasith, of Atepha. 33The descendants of Solomon's servants: the line of Asapphioth, of Pharida, of Je-eli, of Lozon, of Isdael, of Saphythi, 34of Agia, of Phacareth, of Sabie, of Sarothie, of Masias, of Gas, of Addus, of Subas, of Apherra, of Barodis, of Saphat, of Allon. 35The temple servitors and the descendants of Solomon's servants amounted to three hundred and seventy-two in all.

36The following, who returned from Thermeleth and Thelsas with their leaders Chara, Athalar, and Alar, 37were unable to prove by their families and descent that they were Israelites: the line of Dalan, the son of Tuban, and the line of Necodan amounting to six hundred and fifty- two.

38From among the priests the claimants to the priesthood whose record could not be traced: the lines of Obdia, of Accos, and of Joddus who married Augia, one of the daughters of Pharzellaeus, and took his name. 39When search was made for the record of their descent in the register it could not be traced, and so they were debarred from officiating. 40Nehemiah the governor a 5:40 the governor: prob. mng (cp. Ezra 2:63 ); Gk and Attharias. forbade them to partake of the sacred food until there should be a high priest wearing the breastpiece of Revelation and Truth.

41They were in all: Israelites from twelve years old, not counting slaves male and female, forty-two thousand three hundred and sixty; 42their slaves seven thousand three hundred and thirty-seven; musicians and singers two hundred and forty-five. 43Their camels numbered four hundred and thirty-five, their horses seven thousand and thirty-six, their mules two hundred and forty-five, and their donkeys five thousand five hundred and twenty-five.

44On their arrival at the temple of God in Jerusalem, certain of the heads of the families took a vow to put forth their best efforts to rebuild the house on its original site, 45and to give to the sacred treasury one thousand minas of gold and five thousand minas of silver for the fabric and one hundred vestments for priests.

46The priests, the Levites, and some of the people stayed in Jerusalem and its neighbourhood, while the temple musicians, the door-keepers, and all the rest of the Israelites lived in their villages.

47 WHEN it was the seventh month and the Israelites were settled in their homes, they came together with one accord in the broad square of the first gateway toward the east. 48Jeshua son of Josedek and his fellow-priests, and Zerubbabel son of Salathiel and his colleagues set to work and made ready the altar of the God of Israel, 49in order to offer on it whole-offerings as prescribed in the book of Moses, the man of God. 50Other peoples of the land joined them, and they succeeded in setting up the altar on the original site; for in general the peoples in the land were hostile and too strong for them. Then they offered to the Lord sacrifices at the proper time and whole-offerings morning and evening. 51They celebrated the feast of Tabernacles as decreed in the law, with the appropriate sacrifices each day, 52and thereafter the regular offerings, and sacrifices on sabbaths, at new moons, and on all solemn feasts. 53From the new moon of the seventh month, whoever had made a vow to God offered sacrifices to him, although the temple of God was not yet built. 5455Money was given to the stonemasons and carpenters; the Sidonians and Tyrians were supplied with food and drink, and with carts to bring cedar trees from the Lebanon, floating them down as rafts to the roadstead at Joppa. This was done on the written instructions of King Cyrus of Persia.

56In the second month of the second year, Zerubbabel son of Salathiel came to the temple of God in Jerusalem and began the work. There were with him Jeshua son of Josedek, their kinsmen, the levitical priests, and all who had returned to Jerusalem from captivity; 57and they laid the foundation of the temple of God. This was at the new moon, in the second month of the second year after the return to Judaea and Jerusalem. 58Levites who were aged twenty and upwards were appointed to supervise the works of the Lord. Jeshua, his sons and his kinsmen, his brother Cadoel, the sons of Jeshua Emadabun, and the sons of Joda son of Iliadun with their sons and kinsmen, all the Levites who were supervising co-operated in the work on the house of God.

While the builders built the Lord's temple, 59the priests in their vestments with musical instruments and trumpets, and the Levites the sons of Asaph with their cymbals, took their places 60singing to the Lord and praising him in the manner prescribed by King David of Israel. 61They sang psalms in praise of the Lord, ‘for his goodness and glory towards all Israel endures for ever’. 62The people all sounded their trumpets and raised a great shout, and they sang to the Lord as the building rose.

63But those of the priests, Levites, and heads of families who were old enough to have seen the former house came to the building of this house with cries of lamentation. 64Though many were shouting and sounding the trumpets loudly for joy—65so loudly as to be heard from afar—the people could not hear the trumpets for the noise of lamentation.

66The enemies of Judah and Benjamin heard the sound of the trumpets and came to see what it meant. 67When they found the returned exiles rebuilding the temple for the Lord God of Israel, 68they approached Zerubbabel and Jeshua and the heads of the families. ‘We will build with you,’ they said, 69‘for like you we obey your Lord and have sacrificed to him ever since the days of King Asbasareth of Assyria who brought us here.’ 70Zerubbabel, Jeshua, and the heads of the Israelite families replied: ‘It is not for you to build the house for the Lord our God; 71we alone shall build for the Lord of Israel, as King Cyrus of Persia commanded us.’ 72But the peoples of the land harassed b 5:72 harassed: prob. rdg; Gk obscure. and blockaded the men of Judaea, and interrupted the building. 73By their plots, agitations, and riots they prevented its completion during the lifetime of King Cyrus. All building was held up for two years until Darius became king.

Notes:

a 5:40 the governor: prob. mng (cp. Ezra 2:63 ); Gk and Attharias.

b 5:72 harassed: prob. rdg; Gk obscure.

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