Ezra 4

Chapter 4

4:2  Then they came to Zerubbabel, and to the chief of the fathers, and said unto them, Let us build with you: for we seek your God, as ye do; and we do sacrifice unto him since the days of Esarhaddon king of Assur, which brought us up hither.

for we seek

The people of the land sought to hinder the work in three ways:

(1) by seeking to draw the Jews into an unreal union, Ezra 4:3 . (cf) 2 Kings 17:32 .

(2) by "weakening the hands of the people of Judah," Ezra 4:4 i.e, by withholding supplies, etc.; and

(3) by accusations lodged with Ahasuerus and Darius. The first was by far the most subtle and dangerous. The lives of Ezra and Nehemiah afford many illustrations of true separation. 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 ; 2 Timothy 2:19-21 .

4:6  And in the reign of Ahasuerus, in the beginning of his reign, wrote they unto him an accusation against the inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem.

Ahasuerus

The Cambyses of secular history (529-521 BC); not the Ahasuerus of Esther, who is the Xerxes of secular history (485 BC). (See Scofield "Daniel 5:31") .

4:7  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.

Artaxerxes

The Artaxerxes of Ezra 4:7 is identical with Ahasuerus of Ezra 4:6, i.e. the Cambyses of profane history. The Artaxerxes of Ezra 7:1 is the Longimanus of secular history, BC 418. But (See Scofield "Daniel 5:31") .

4:21  Give ye now commandment to cause these men to cease, and that this city be not builded, until another commandment shall be given from me.

Give

Chald. make a new decree.

Read Ezra 4