The Agora
Bible Commentary

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Ezra 3

Ezr 3:1

THE SEVENTH MONTH: The 7th month was a particularly significant month in the Jewish calendar: blowing of trumpets on the first (Lev 23:24), day of atonement on the 10th (Lev 23:27), and the beginning of the Feast of Tabernacles on the 15th. This was a time of great expectations in Jerusalem. And so they kept the Feat of Tabernacles (Ezra 3:4), which reminded them of deliverance from Egypt and the period in the wilderness (Lev 23:43). A powerful reminder of the deliverance from Babylon.

Ezr 3:2

THE MAN OF GOD: Moses is referred to in this way elsewhere: Deut 33:1; Josh 14:6; 1Ch 23:14; 2Ch 30:16; Psa 90, title. This description, used in this definitive way, is shared by Elisha (2KI 5:8,20), David (2Ch 8:14; Neh 12:24,36), and, more surprisingly, Shemaiah (2Ch 11:2). Maybe we should bear these in mind when we read of our responsibilities in 2Ti 3:17 -- the only NT occurrence of this phrase.

Ezr 3:3

THEY BUILT THE ALTAR ON ITS FOUNDATION: On its proper base, ie, where it had originally stood (2Ch 16n; Isa 8n).

Ezr 3:7

THEN THEY GAVE MONEY...: The Jews were having to purchase their own building materials, because they had not been informed of the provisions in the original decree (ie, Ezr 6:3,4). Their limited finances restricted them to a small, unimposing temple (Ezr 3:12).

AS AUTHORIZED BY CYRUS KING OF PERSIA: This was the original grant and decree, as received in Ezr 1:2,3 -- which seemed to say nothing about financial support (ct Ezr 6:4).

Ezr 3:11

THEY SANG: "They sang together" (AV), or "responsively" (RSV).

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