Ezra 4:19
And I commanded, 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 therein.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(19) Insurrection.—Never against Persia; but such as are alluded to in 2 Kings 24

Ezra 4:19-20. That rebellion and sedition have been found therein — One instance or two of it, in latter times, had served to fasten this odious character upon them, as if they had been always guilty of these crimes. There have been mighty kings also over Jerusalem — And therefore the king thought it not advisable to permit them to go on with rebuilding the city, lest they should become powerful again.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.The archives of the Babylonian kingdom would contain accounts of the insurrections raised, or threatened, by Jehoiakim, Jehoiachin, and Zedekiah 2 Kings 24:1, 2 Kings 24:10, 2 Kings 24:20. It does not appear that there had ever been any rebellion against Persia. 14. we have maintenance from the king's palace—literally, "we are salted with the salt of the palace." "Eating a prince's salt" is an Oriental phrase, equivalent to "receiving maintenance from him." No text from Poole on this verse. And I commanded, and search hath been made,.... In the records of his predecessors, whether Chaldeans or Persians:

and it is found that this city of old time hath made insurrection against kings, and that rebellion and sedition have been made therein: and yet this could not be carried higher than to the times of Zedekiah and Jehoiakim, as before observed, which was not one hundred years ago, unless the rebellion of Hezekiah against the king of Assyria could be thought to be in these records, 2 Kings 18:7, and yet from hence it is concluded as if in ages past they had been guilty of rebellion and sedition, and even always.

And I commanded, and search hath been made, and it is found that this city of old time hath made insurrection against kings, and that rebellion and sedition have been made therein.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
19. And I commanded] R.V. decreed. A more authoritative word. Literally, ‘and from me was a decree made’; and they searched, ‘and found’.

of old time] Cf. Ezra 4:15.

hath made insurrection against kings] By the insurrections against kings and the sedition and rebellion of Jerusalem here mentioned as being recorded in the chronicles of the state is probably meant the treacherous and unstable policy of Jehoiakim, Jehoiachin, and Zedekiah (see 2 Kings 24:1; 2 Kings 24:10; 2 Kings 24:20). Of this the Babylonian records would preserve the testimony. It is less likely that the more ancient records of the Assyrian Empire containing the account of Hezekiah’s revolt from Sennacherib would have been consulted.Verse 19. - I commanded, and search has been made. The Pseudo-Smerdis, who was a fanatical adherent of Magism, which disallowed temples altogether (Herod., 1:130), and who had already destroyed the temples of Ormuzd in Persia ('Behistun Ins.,' col. 1. par. 14, 5), was naturally willing enough to do as the Samaritans desired, and stop the restoration of the Jewish temple. Accordingly, he had a search made among the state records, and found, as they had expected he would, evidence of insurrections on the part of the Jews against the foreign countries to which they had been subject, as Assyria (2 Kings 18:7) and Babylon (ibid. 24:1; Jeremiah 52:3), and also proof of the formidable power possessed by certain Jewish or Israelite kings; upon which he thought himself justified in complying with the Samaritan request, and ordering the work that was going on at Jerusalem to cease (see ver. 21). "Now be it known unto the king, that if this city be built up and ... they will not pay toll, tribute, and custom, and it (the city) will at last bring damage to the king." The three words מנדּה בלו והלך occur again, Ezra 4:20 and Ezra 7:24, in this combination as designating the different kinds of imposts. מנדּה, with resolved Dagesh forte, for מדּה (Ezra 4:20), signifies measure, then tax or custom measured to every one. בּלו, probably a duty on consumption, excise; הלך, a toll paid upon roads by travellers and their goods. The word אפּהם, which occurs only here, and has not been expressed by old translators, depends upon the Pehlevi word אודום: it is connected with the Sanscrit apa, in the superl. apama, and signifies at last, or in the future; comp. Haug, p. 156. מלכים, a Hebraized form for מלכין, Ezra 4:15, is perhaps only an error of transcription.
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