Ezra 4:7
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
And in the days of Artaxerxes king of Persia, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel and the rest of his associates wrote a letter to Artaxerxes. The letter was written in Aramaic script and in the Aramaic language.

New Living Translation
Even later, during the reign of King Artaxerxes of Persia, the enemies of Judah, led by Bishlam, Mithredath, and Tabeel, sent a letter to Artaxerxes in the Aramaic language, and it was translated for the king.

English Standard Version
In the days of Artaxerxes, Bishlam and Mithredath and Tabeel and the rest of their associates wrote to Artaxerxes king of Persia. The letter was written in Aramaic and translated.

New American Standard Bible
And in the days of Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel and the rest of his colleagues wrote to Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the text of the letter was written in Aramaic and translated from Aramaic.

King James Bible
And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their companions, unto Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in the Syrian tongue, and interpreted in the Syrian tongue.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
During the time of King Artaxerxes of Persia, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel and the rest of his colleagues wrote to King Artaxerxes. The letter was written in Aramaic and translated.

International Standard Version
While Artaxerxes was king of Persia, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their co-conspirators wrote in the Aramaic language and script to King Artaxerxes of Persia. Aramaic:

NET Bible
And during the reign of Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their colleagues wrote to King Artaxerxes of Persia. This letter was first written in Aramaic but then translated. [Aramaic:]

New Heart English Bible
In 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.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their group wrote to him when Artaxerxes was king of Persia. The letter was written with the Aramaic script and translated into the Aramaic language.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of his companions, unto Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in the Aramaic character, and set forth in the Aramaic tongue.

New American Standard 1977
And in the days of Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of his colleagues, wrote to Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the text of the letter was written in Aramaic and translated from Aramaic.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their companions, unto Artaxerxes, king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in the Syrian tongue and interpreted in the Syrian tongue.

King James 2000 Bible
And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their companions, unto Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in Aramaic, and set forth in the Aramaic language.

American King James Version
And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their companions, to Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in the Syrian tongue, and interpreted in the Syrian tongue.

American Standard Version
And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of his companions, unto Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in the Syrian character , and set forth in the Syrian tongue .

Douay-Rheims Bible
And in the days of Artaxerxes, Beselam, Mithridates, and Thabeel, and the rest that were in the council wrote to Artaxerxes king of the Persians : and the letter of accusation was written in Syriac, and was read in the Syrian tongue.

Darby Bible Translation
And in the days of Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of his companions, wrote to Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in Aramaic, and interpreted in Aramaic.

English Revised Version
And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of his companions, unto Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in the Syrian character, and set forth in the Syrian tongue.

Webster's Bible Translation
And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their companions to Artaxerxes king of Persia, and the writing of the letter was written in the Syrian language, and interpreted in the Syrian language.

World English Bible
In 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 the Syrian [character], and set forth in the Syrian [language].

Young's Literal Translation
and in the days of Artaxerxes have Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of his companions written unto Artaxerxes king of Persia, and the writing of the letter is written in Aramaean, and interpreted in Aramaean.
Study Bible
Opposition under Xerxes and Artaxerxes
6Now in the reign of Ahasuerus, in the beginning of his reign, they wrote an accusation against the inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem. 7And in the days of Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel and the rest of his colleagues wrote to Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the text of the letter was written in Aramaic and translated from Aramaic. 8Rehum the commander and Shimshai the scribe wrote a letter against Jerusalem to King Artaxerxes, as follows--…
Cross References
2 Kings 18:26
Then Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, and Shebnah and Joah, said to Rabshakeh, "Speak now to your servants in Aramaic, for we understand it; and do not speak with us in Judean in the hearing of the people who are on the wall."

Ezra 4:1
Now when the enemies of Judah and Benjamin heard that the people of the exile were building a temple to the LORD God of Israel,

Ezra 4:8
Rehum the commander and Shimshai the scribe wrote a letter against Jerusalem to King Artaxerxes, as follows--

Ezra 8:36
Then they delivered the king's edicts to the king's satraps and to the governors in the provinces beyond the River, and they supported the people and the house of God.

Isaiah 36:11
Then Eliakim and Shebna and Joah said to Rabshakeh, "Speak now to your servants in Aramaic, for we understand it; and do not speak with us in Judean in the hearing of the people who are on the wall."

Daniel 2:4
Then the Chaldeans spoke to the king in Aramaic: "O king, live forever! Tell the dream to your servants, and we will declare the interpretation."
Treasury of Scripture

And in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their companions, to Artaxerxes king of Persia; and the writing of the letter was written in the Syrian tongue, and interpreted in the Syrian tongue.

A.M.

Bishlam. or, in peace. companions. Heb. societies

Ezra 4:9,17 Then wrote Rehum the chancellor, and Shimshai the scribe, and the …

Ezra 5:6 The copy of the letter that Tatnai, governor on this side the river, …

the Syrian tongue (That is, probably, both the language and character were Syrian or Chaldaic; and therefore, from the

Ezra 7:27 Blessed be the LORD God of our fathers, which has put such a thing …

2 Kings 18:26 Then said Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, and Shebna, and Joah, to Rabshakeh, …

Isaiah 36:11 Then said Eliakim and Shebna and Joah to Rabshakeh, Speak, I pray …

Daniel 2:4 Then spoke the Chaldeans to the king in Syriack, O king, live for …

(7) In the days of Artaxerxes.--This must be Gomates, the Magian priest who personated Smerdis, the dead son of Cyrus, and reigned only seven months: note that the expression used is "days," and not "reign" as in the previous verse. This Artaxerxes has been thought by many commentators to be the Longimanus of the sequel of this book and of Nehemiah, and they have identified the Ahasuerus of Ezra and Esther with Xerxes. This would explain the reference to "the walls" in Ezra 4:12; but in Ezra 4:23-24 the sequence of events is strict, and the word "ceased" links the parts of the narrative into unity. Moreover, the Persian princes had often more than one name. At the same time, there is nothing to make such an anticipatory and parenthetical insertion impossible.

In the Syrian tongue.--The characters and the words were Syrian or Aramaic; this explains the transition to another language at this point,

Verse 7. - And in the days of Artaxerxes. See the comment on ver. 6. If Artaxerxes be the Pseudo-Smerdis, we can readily understand why an application was not made to him at once, and how it came about that the Jews recommenced their building, as they appear from vers. 12, 13 to have done. The Pseudo-Smerdis was a usurper; his reign was a time of partial anarchy; in a distant part of the empire it would not be known for a while who was king. Men would be thrown on themselves, and would do as it seemed good in their own eyes. Later, there may have been some doubt whether a king, who was known to be a religious reformer, would follow the policy of his predecessor with respect to the Jews, or reverse it. Hence a delay, and then a more formal application than before for a positive decree to stop the building (see ver. 21). The rest of their companions. Literally, of their companies - the abstract for the concrete. The writing of the letter was written in the Syrian tongue. Rather, "in the Syrian fashion," i.e. in Syriac characters. And interpreted in the Syrian tongue. Or "translated into the Syriac language." The character and the words were alike Syriac (comp. 2 Kings 18:26). Ezra gives the letter in Chaldee. And in the days of Artaxerxes,.... The same with Ahasuerus, in the preceding verse; and who also is Cambyses, which is his name in Heathen authors, Artaxerxes being a common name to the kings of Persia; though some (f) think this was Smerdis, the magician and impostor, who was between Cambyses and Darius; but as he reigned but seven months, it is not very likely that he should be wrote unto, and an answer received from him; besides he sent to every nation he ruled over (g), and so to the Jews, and proclaimed to them freedom from tribute and the militia for three years, to ingratiate himself to them:

wrote Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their companions; or his company; for Jarchi thinks only one person is meant; that Mithredath Tabeel is the name of one of the adversaries of Judah; and that Bishlam is an appellative, and signifies that he wrote in peace, or in a way of salutation and greeting; but they seem to be the names of governors in the cities of Samaria under the king of Persia: these wrote

to Artaxerxes king of Persia; instigated by the Samaritans:

and the writing of the letter was written in the Syrian tongue, and interpreted in the Syrian tongue; or Chaldee, of which Ezra gives a copy in the Chaldee language; the meaning either is, that it was written both in Syriac letters, and in the Syriac language; for sometimes words are written in one language and in the character of another, as the Syriac is sometimes written in, Hebrew characters, and the Hebrew in Roman; or else there was a postscript added to this letter, explaining some things in it, which also was written in the same language: some take (h) the word "nishtevan", rendered "written", to be the name of a province on the borders of the country beyond Euphrates, whose figure and characters were in high esteem, and fit to write in to kings; but the words and language were Syrian, and needed interpretation.

(f) Prideaux's Connect. par. 1. p. 175. Authors of the Universal History, vol. 5. p. 199, 203. So Vitringa, Hypotypos. Hist. Sacr. p. 108. (g) Herodot. Thalia, sive, l. 3. c. 67. Justin. l. 1. c. 9. (h) Praefat. Arugas Habbosem apud Buxtorf. de liter. Heb. add. Ezr 4:7-24. Letter to Artaxerxes.

7. in the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam, etc.—The three officers named are supposed to have been deputy governors appointed by the king of Persia over all the provinces subject to his empire west of the Euphrates.

the Syrian tongue—or Aramæan language, called sometimes in our version, Chaldee. This was made use of by the Persians in their decrees and communications relative to the Jews (compare 2Ki 18:26; Isa 36:11). The object of their letter was to press upon the royal notice the inexpediency and danger of rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem. They labored hard to prejudice the king's mind against that measure.4:6-24 It is an old slander, that the prosperity of the church would be hurtful to kings and princes. Nothing can be more false, for true godliness teaches us to honour and obey our sovereign. But where the command of God requires one thing and the law of the land another, we must obey God rather than man, and patiently submit to the consequences. All who love the gospel should avoid all appearance of evil, lest they should encourage the adversaries of the church. The world is ever ready to believe any accusation against the people of God, and refuses to listen to them. The king suffered himself to be imposed upon by these frauds and falsehoods. Princes see and hear with other men's eyes and ears, and judge things as represented to them, which are often done falsely. But God's judgment is just; he sees things as they are.
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Alphabetical: a And Aramaic Artaxerxes associates Bishlam colleagues days from his in king language letter Mithredath of Persia rest script Tabeel text the to translated was written wrote

OT History: Ezra 4:7 In the days of Artaxerxes wrote Bishlam (Ezr. Ez) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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