Ezra 6
New American Standard Bible►► 

Darius Finds Cyrus’ Decree

1Then King Darius issued a decree, and a search was conducted in the [a]archives, where the treasures were stored in Babylon. 2And in [b]Ecbatana, in the fortress which is in the province of Media, a scroll was found; and the following was written in it: “Memorandum3In the first year of King Cyrus, Cyrus the king issued a decree: ‘Concerning the house of God in Jerusalem, let the [c]temple, the place where sacrifices are offered, be rebuilt, and let [d]its foundations be repaired, its height being [e]sixty cubits and its width sixty cubits, 4with three layers of large stones and [f]one layer of timber. And the cost is to be paid from the [g]royal treasury. 5Also the gold and silver utensils of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar took from the temple in Jerusalem and brought to Babylon, are to be returned and [h]brought to their places in the temple in Jerusalem; and you shall put them in the house of God.’

6“Now as for you, Tattenai, governor of the province beyond the Euphrates River, Shethar-bozenai, and [i]your colleagues, the officials of the provinces beyond the River, [j]stay away from there. 7Leave that work on the house of God alone; let the governor of the Jews and the elders of the Jews rebuild that house of God on its site. 8Furthermore, I issue a decree concerning what you are to do for these elders of Judah in the rebuilding of that house of God: the full cost is to be paid to those people from the royal treasury out of the taxes of the provinces beyond the Euphrates River, and that without interruption. 9And whatever is needed, bulls, rams, and lambs for burnt offerings to the God of heaven, and wheat, salt, wine, and anointing oil, as the priests in Jerusalem order, it is to be given to them daily without fail, 10so that they may offer acceptable sacrifices to the God of heaven and pray for the lives of the king and his sons. 11And I issued a decree that any person who violates this decree, a timber shall be pulled out of his house and he shall be impaled on it; and his house shall be turned into a refuse heap on account of this. 12May the God who has caused His name to dwell there overthrow any king or people who [k]attempts to [l]change it, so as to destroy that house of God in Jerusalem. I, Darius, have issued this decree; it is to be carried out with all diligence!”

The Temple Completed and Dedicated

13Then Tattenai, the governor of the province beyond the Euphrates River, Shethar-bozenai, and their colleagues carried out the decree with all diligence, just as King Darius had [m]ordered. 14And the elders of the Jews [n]were successful in building through the prophecy of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo. And [o]they finished building following the command of the God of Israel and the decree of Cyrus, Darius, and Artaxerxes king of Persia. 15Now this [p]temple was completed [q]on the third day of the month Adar; it was the sixth year of the reign of King Darius.

16And the sons of Israel, the priests, the Levites, and the rest of the [r]exiles, celebrated the dedication of this house of God with joy. 17They offered for the dedication of this temple of God a hundred bulls, two hundred rams, four hundred lambs, and as a sin offering for all Israel twelve male goats, corresponding to the number of the tribes of Israel. 18Then they appointed the priests to their divisions and the Levites in their sections for the service of God in Jerusalem, as it is written in the Book of Moses.

The Passover Held

19The exiles held the Passover on the fourteenth of the first month. 20For the priests and the Levites had purified themselves together; all of them were pure. Then they slaughtered the Passover lambs for all the exiles, both for their brothers the priests and for themselves. 21And the sons of Israel who returned from exile and all those who had separated themselves from the impurity of the nations of the land to join them, to seek the LORD God of Israel, ate the Passover. 22And they held the Feast of Unleavened Bread for seven days with joy, because the LORD had made them happy, and had turned the heart of the king of Assyria toward them to [s]encourage them in the work of the house of God, the God of Israel.

[a] 1 Lit house of the books
[b] 2 Aram Achmetha
[c] 3 Lit house
[d] 3 Or perhaps offerings by fire be offered
[e] 3 About 90 ft. or 27 m
[f] 4 As in LXX; Aram a layer of new timber
[g] 4 Lit king’s house
[h] 5 Lit go
[i] 6 Aram their
[j] 6 Lit be distant
[k] 12 Lit sends his hand
[l] 12 Or violate
[m] 13 Lit sent
[n] 14 Lit were building and succeeding
[o] 14 Lit built and finished
[p] 15 Lit house
[q] 15 Lit until
[r] 16 Lit sons of the exile
[s] 22 Lit strengthen their hands

New American Standard Bible
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by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif. All rights reserved.
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