Ezra 2

1 These are the people from the province who now returned from the captivity, exiles whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had carried off captive. They returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to his hometown.
2 They came in company with Zerubbabel, Jeshua, Nehemiah, Seraiah, Reelaiah, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispar, Bigvai, Rehum, and Baanah. The numbers of the returning Israelites by families of origin were as follows:
3 Parosh, 2,172
4 Shephatiah, 372
5 Arah, 775
6 Pahath-Moab (sons of Jeshua and Joab), 2,812
7 Elam, 1,254
8 Zattu, 945
9 Zaccai, 760
10 Bani, 642
11 Bebai, 623
12 Azgad, 1,222
13 Adonikam, 666
14 Bigvai, 2,056
15 Adin, 454
16 Ater (sons of Hezekiah), 98
17 Bezai, 323
18 Jorah, 112
19 Hashum, 223
20 Gibbar, 95.
21 Israelites identified by place of origin were as follows: Bethlehem, 123
22 Netophah, 56
23 Anathoth, 128
24 Azmaveth, 42
25 Kiriath Jearim, Kephirah, and Beeroth, 743
26 Ramah and Geba, 621
27 Micmash, 122
28 Bethel and Ai, 223
29 Nebo, 52
30 Magbish, 156
31 Elam (the other one), 1,254
32 Harim, 320
33 Lod, Hadid, and Ono, 725
34 Jericho, 345
35 Senaah, 3,630.
36 Priestly families: Jedaiah (sons of Jeshua), 973
37 Immer, 1,052
38 Pashhur, 1,247
39 Harim, 1,017.
40 Levitical families: Jeshua and Kadmiel (sons of Hodaviah), 74.
41 Singers: Asaph's family line, 128.
42 Security guard families: Shallum, Ater, Talmon, Akkub, Hatita, and Shobai, 139.
43 Families of temple support staff: Ziha, Hasupha, Tabbaoth,
44 Keros, Siaha, Padon,
45 Lebanah, Hagabah, Akkub,
46 Hagab, Shalmai, Hanan,
47 Giddel, Gahar, Reaiah,
48 Rezin, Nekoda, Gazzam,
49 Uzza, Paseah, Besai,
50 Asnah, Meunim, Nephussim,
51 Bakbuk, Hakupha, Harhur,
52 Bazluth, Mehida, Harsha,
53 Barkos, Sisera, Temah,
54 Neziah, and Hatipha.
55 Families of Solomon's servants: Sotai, Hassophereth, Peruda,
56 Jaala, Darkon, Giddel,
57 Shephatiah, Hattil, Pokereth-Hazzebaim, and Ami.
58 Temple support staff and Solomon's servants added up to 392.
59 These are those who came from Tel Melah, Tel Harsha, Kerub, Addon, and Immer. They weren't able to prove their ancestry, whether they were true Israelites or not:
60 Delaiah, Tobiah, and Nekoda, 652 in all.
61 Likewise with these priestly families: Hobaiah, Hakkoz, and Barzillai, who had married a daughter of Barzillai the Gileadite and took that name.
62 They had thoroughly searched for their family records but couldn't find them. And so they were barred from priestly work as ritually unclean.
63 The governor ruled that they could not eat from the holy food until a priest could determine their status with the Urim and Thummim.
64 The total count for the congregation was 42,360.
65 That did not include the male and female slaves, which numbered 7,337. There were also 200 male and female singers,
66 and they had 736 horses, 245 mules,
67 435 camels, and 6,720 donkeys.
68 Some of the heads of families, on arriving at The Temple of God in Jerusalem, made Freewill-Offerings toward the rebuilding of The Temple of God on its site.
69 They gave to the building fund as they were able, about 1,100 pounds of gold, about three tons of silver, and 100 priestly robes.
70 The priests, Levites, and some of the people lived in Jerusalem. The singers, security guards, and temple support staff found places in their hometowns. All the Israelites found a place to live.

Ezra 2 Commentary

Chapter 2

The numbers that returned. (1-35) The numbers of the priests and Levites. (36-63) The offerings for the temple. (64-70)

Verses 1-35 An account was kept of the families that came up out of captivity. See how sin lowers a nation, which righteousness would exalt!

Verses 36-63 Those who undervalue their relation to the Lord in times of reproach, persecution, or distress, will have no benefit from it when it becomes honourable or profitable. Those who have no evidence that they are, by the new birth, spiritual priests unto God, through Jesus Christ, have no right to the comforts and privileges of Christians.

Verses 64-70 Let none complain of the needful expenses of their religion. Seek first the kingdom of God, his favour and his glory, then will all other things be added unto them. Their offerings were nothing, compared with the offerings of the princes in David's time; yet, being according to their ability, were as acceptable to God. The Lord will carry us through all undertakings entered on according to his will, with an aim to his glory, and dependence on his assistance. Those who, at the call of the gospel, renounce sin and return to the Lord, shall be guarded and guided through all perils of the way, and arrive safely at the mansions provided in the holy city of God.

Chapter Summary


This chapter contains a list of those that went up from Babylon to Jerusalem, of their leaders, their chief men, princes and priests, Ezr 2:1,2 of the people, described by their families, towns, and cities, and number of persons, Ezr 2:3-35, of the priests, Levites, and Nethinims, Ezr 2:36-58, and of those that could not make out their genealogy, people and priests, Ezr 2:59-63, and then the sum total of the whole congregation is given, Ezr 2:64, besides men and maidservants, singing men and women, and cattle of divers sorts, Ezr 2:65-67, and the chapter is closed with an account of the freewill offerings of the principal men towards the building of the temple, and of the settlement of the people in their respective cities, Ezr 2:68-70.

Ezra 2 Commentaries

Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved.