Ezra 7

1 Now after these things, in the reign of Artachshasta king of Paras, Ezra the son of Serayah, the son of `Azaryah, the son of Hilkiyah,
2 the son of Shallum, the son of Tzadok, the son of Achituv,
3 the son of Amaryah, the son of `Azaryah, the son of Merayot,
4 the son of Zerachyah, the son of `Uzzi, the son of Bukki,
5 the son of Avishua, the son of Pinechas, the son of El`azar, the son of Aharon the chief Kohen;
6 this Ezra went up from Bavel: and he was a ready Sofer in the law of Moshe, which the LORD, the God of Yisra'el, had given; and the king granted him all his request, according to the hand of the LORD his God on him.
7 There went up some of the children of Yisra'el, and of the Kohanim, and the Levites, and the singers, and the porters, and the temple servants, to Yerushalayim, in the seventh year of Artachshasta the king.
8 He came to Yerushalayim in the fifth month, which was in the seventh year of the king.
9 For on the first [day] of the first month began he to go up from Bavel; and on the first [day] of the fifth month came he to Yerushalayim, according to the good hand of his God on him.
10 For Ezra had set his heart to seek the law of the LORD, and to do it, and to teach in Yisra'el statutes and ordinances.
11 Now this is the copy of the letter that the king Artachshasta gave to Ezra the Kohen, the Sofer, even the Sofer of the words of the mitzvot of the LORD, and of his statutes to Yisra'el:
12 Artachshasta, king of kings, to Ezra the Kohen, the Sofer of the law of the God of heaven, perfect and so forth.
13 I make a decree, that all those of the people of Yisra'el, and their Kohanim and the Levites, in my realm, who are minded of their own free will to go to Yerushalayim, go with you.
14 Because you are sent of the king and his seven counselors, to inquire concerning Yehudah and Yerushalayim, according to the law of your God which is in your hand,
15 and to carry the silver and gold, which the king and his counselors have freely offered to the God of Yisra'el, whose habitation is in Yerushalayim,
16 and all the silver and gold that you shall find in all the province of Bavel, with the freewill-offering of the people, and of the Kohanim, offering willingly for the house of their God which is in Yerushalayim;
17 therefore you shall with all diligence buy with this money bulls, rams, lambs, with their meal-offerings and their drink-offerings, and shall offer them on the altar of the house of your God which is in Yerushalayim.
18 Whatever shall seem good to you and to your brothers to do with the rest of the silver and the gold, that do you after the will of your God.
19 The vessels that are given you for the service of the house of your God, deliver you before the God of Yerushalayim.
20 Whatever more shall be needful for the house of your God, which you shall have occasion to bestow, bestow it out of the king's treasure-house.
21 I, even I Artachshasta the king, do make a decree to all the treasurers who are beyond the River, that whatever Ezra the Kohen, the Sofer of the law of the God of heaven, shall require of you, it be done with all diligence,
22 to one hundred talents of silver, and to one hundred measures of wheat, and to one hundred baths of wine, and to one hundred baths of oil, and salt without prescribing how much.
23 Whatever is commanded by the God of heaven, let it be done exactly for the house of the God of heaven; for why should there be wrath against the realm of the king and his sons?
24 Also we inform you, that touching any of the Kohanim and Levites, the singers, porters, temple servants, or servants of this house of God, it shall not be lawful to impose tribute, custom, or toll, on them.
25 You, Ezra, after the wisdom of your God who is in your hand, appoint magistrates and judges, who may judge all the people who are beyond the River, all such as know the laws of your God; and teach you him who doesn't know them.
26 Whoever will not do the law of your God, and the law of the king, let judgment be executed on him with all diligence, whether it be to death, or to banishment, or to confiscation of goods, or to imprisonment.
27 Blessed be the LORD, the God of our fathers, who has put such a thing as this in the king's heart, to beautify the house of the LORD which is in Yerushalayim;
28 and has extended lovingkindness to me before the king, and his counselors, and before all the king's mighty princes. I was strengthened according to the hand of the LORD my God on me, and I gathered together out of Yisra'el chief men to go up with me.

Ezra 7 Commentary

Chapter 7

Ezra goes up to Jerusalem. (1-10) The commission to Ezra. (11-26) Ezra blesses God for his favour. (27,28)

Verses 1-10 Ezra went from Babylon to Jerusalem, for the good of his country. The king was kind to him; he granted all his requests, whatever Ezra desired to enable him to serve his country. When he went, many went with him; he obtained favour from his king, by the Divine favour. Every creature is that to us, which God makes it to be. We must see the hand of God in the events that befal us, and acknowledge him with thankfulness.

Verses 11-26 The liberality of heathen kings to support the worship of God, reproached the conduct of many kings of Judah, and will rise up in judgment against the covetousness of wealthy professed Christians, who will not promote the cause of God. But the weapons of Christian ministers are not carnal. Faithful preaching, holy lives, fervent prayers, and patient suffering when called to it, are the means to bring men into obedience to Christ.

Verses 27-28 Two things Ezra blessed God for: 1. For his commission. If any good appear in our hearts, or in the hearts of others, we must own that God put it there, and bless him; it is he that worketh in us, both to will and to do that which is good. 2. For his encouragement: God has extended mercy to me. Ezra was a man of courage, yet he ascribed this not to his own heart, but to God's hand. If God give us his hand, we are bold and cheerful; if he withdraw it, we are weak as water. Whatever we are enabled to do for God and those around us, God must have all the glory.

Chapter Summary


In this chapter we have the lineage and character of Ezra described, Ezr 7:1-6, his expedition to Jerusalem, and of many others with him, Ezr 7:7-10, a copy of the commission King Artaxerxes gave him to execute, Ezr 7:11-26, and his thankfulness, Ezr 7:27,28.

and the dedication of it, and keeping the passover:

\\in the reign of Artaxerxes king of Persia\\; in the seventh year of his reign, Ezr 7:7,8, who is the same with Darius in the preceding chapter; so Jarchi and Aben Ezra; \\See Gill on "Ezr 6:14"\\.

\\Ezra the son of Seraiah\\; the high priest slain by Nebuchadnezzar Jer 52:24,27, this Ezra was a younger son of his, brother to Josedech, and uncle to Joshua, who were high priests in succession; his pedigree is carried in the ascending line up to Aaron, in this and the four following verses; only six generations, for brevity sake, are omitted, between Azariah and Meraioth, which may be supplied from 1Ch 6:7-10, \\See Gill on "1Ch 6:3\\. 20133-950205-1547-Ezr7.2

Ezra 7 Commentaries

The Hebrew Names Version is in the public domain.