The king sent this answer: Greetings to Rehum the royal deputy and Shimshai the scribe and the rest of their colleagues who live in Samaria and elsewhere in the province Beyond the River.
The entire letter that you sent to us has been read in translation for me.
I issued an order; they searched and discovered that this city has revolted against kings over a long period of time. There has been much rebellion and revolt there.
However, there have been mighty kings over Jerusalem who also ruled over the whole province Beyond the River. Tribute and taxes and dues were paid to them.
Therefore, issue an order to stop these people: this city is not to be rebuilt until I make a decree.
Be sure to carry out this order! Why should danger grow and threaten the king?