Daily reading

Today’s reading is: Ezra 1:1-4:5; 2 Chr. 36:22-23; 1 Chr. 3:17-24


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Ezra Chapter One

  1. The Lord “stirred up the spirit of Cyrus” to accomplish His eternal purpose (Ezr. 1:1).
    1. This fulfilled Jeremiah’s prophecy of a 70 year captivity (Jer. 29:10).
    2. This fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy which named Cyrus by name (Isa. 44:28; 45:1).
  2. Cyrus’ decree instructed the Lord’s people to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the temple (Ezr. 1:3).  They were to be sponsored by the exilic communities from which they go (Ezr. 1:4).
  3. The elders who returned did so according to the stirring of their spirit by God (Ezr. 1:5).
  4. Cyrus funded their operations from Nebuchadnezzar’s plunder of Jerusalem (Ezr. 1:7-11). Note: Sheshbazzar (Ezr. 1:8,11; 5:14,16) is the Babylonian name for Zerubbabel (Ezr. 2:2; 3:2,8; 4:2-3; 5:2).

Ezra Chapter Two

  1. Chapter 2 details the names and numbers of the faithful remnant that returned to Israel’s covenant land of promise.
  2. Eleven tribal leaders are named (Ezr. 2:2).  The Nehemiah account lists 12 tribal leaders (Neh. 7:7).
  3. Returning men are indicated by their families, and the land allotments of their inheritance (Ezr. 2:3-35).
  4. The Priests, Levites, and other temple servants are particularly featured as the main purpose for the Return is to rebuild the temple (Ezr. 2:36-54 cf. 1:3).
  5. A number of Jews were unable to document their lineage (Ezr. 2:59-60), including some of the priests (Ezr. 2:61-63).
  6. The total number of the exiles returning with Zerubbabel was 49,897 out of an estimated population of two or three million Jewish people (Ezr. 2:64-65).

Ezra Chapter Three

  1. The seventh month was the month for the Feast of Trumpets (Lev. 23:23-25), Day of Atonement (Lev. 23:26-32), and the Feast of Tabernacles (Lev. 23:33-44).  The returning exiles were blessed to build an altar and observe the first sacrifices in Jerusalem in over 50 years.
  2. The two leaders of this worship were the Davidic heir Zerubbabel and the Aaronic heir Jeshua (Ezr. 3:2).
  3. The returning exiles worshipped even as they assembled their building materials, and even as they lived in fear of the surrounding peoples (Ezr. 3:3-7).
  4. Construction gets underway in the second month of the second year of their return (Ezr. 3:8-13).
    1. The young men rejoiced at the laying of the foundation.
    2. The old men lamented at the same event.

Ezra Chapter Four

  1. The Adversary of Israel motivated the adversaries of Israel to hinder the temple project (Ezr. 4:1ff.).
    1. They attempted to infiltrate and join in the work project (Ezr. 4:2-3).  Their claim to worshiping YHWH was partially true according to their hybrid Samarian religion (2nd Kgs. 17:29-41).
    2. They engaged in terrorism to discourage the temple building project (Ezr. 4:4-5,24).

(Chapter Four continues on Day 264)

Second Chronicles Chapter Thirty-Six

(Outline continues from Day 243)

  1. The proclamation of Cyrus for God’s people to return to their land and rebuild the House of God (2nd Chr. 36:22-23; Ezr. 1:1-3; Isa. 44:28; 45:13). Remember: this is not the decree which launches the seventy septad calendar of Daniel 9.

First Chronicles Chapter Three

(Outline continues from Day 231)

  1. The descendants of Jeconiah “the childless” (Jer. 22:30) are listed (1st Chr. 3:17-24).
    1. Jeconiah’s “childlessness” is one of royal childlessness.  “In his days” he will observe no descendant seated on the Davidic throne (Jer. 22:30).
    2. Shealtiel is the legal son of Jeconiah (1st Chr. 3:17; Matt. 1:12), but the physical son of Neri (Lk. 3:27,28).
    3. Zerubabbel is the legal son of Shealtiel (Ezra 3:2,8; Hag. 1:12,14; Matt. 1:12), but the physical son of Pedaiah (1st Chr. 3:19).
    4. The descendants of Zerubabbel are listed down through Ezra’s generation (1st Chr. 3:19-24), giving additional evidence to the Ezrite authorship of the Book.
  2. The line of David is vital as the continuation of the promise of the Seed of the Woman: through Shem; through Abraham, Isaac, & Jacob; through Judah; through David (2nd Sam. 7:12-16).