Ezra 4:23

23 As soon as the copy of the letter of King Artaxerxes was read to Rehum and Shimshai the secretary and their associates, they went immediately to the Jews in Jerusalem and compelled them by force to stop.

Read Ezra 4:23 Using Other Translations

Now when the copy of king Artaxerxes' letter was read before Rehum, and Shimshai the scribe, and their companions, they went up in haste to Jerusalem unto the Jews, and made them to cease by force and power.
Then, when the copy of King Artaxerxes' letter was read before Rehum and Shimshai the scribe and their associates, they went in haste to the Jews at Jerusalem and by force and power made them cease.
When this letter from King Artaxerxes was read to Rehum, Shimshai, and their colleagues, they hurried to Jerusalem. Then, with a show of strength, they forced the Jews to stop building.

What does Ezra 4:23 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Ezra 4:23

Now when the copy of King Artaxerxes letter was read before
Rehum, and Shimshai the scribe, and their companions
By him or them to whom it was particularly directed:

they went up in haste to Jerusalem unto the Jews;
not only in obedience to the king's command, but from an eagerness of spirit to put a stop to the proceedings of the Jews, to whom they had an aversion, instigated by the Samaritans:

and made them to cease by force and power;
from going on with the building of the temple, which they reckoned a part of the city, and within their commission; this they did by showing the power and authority they had under the king's hand, and by the forces they brought with them to compel them to it, should they refuse to obey; or, however, they threatened them highly what they would do, if they did not desist.

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