Ezra 7-!0



The Second return of the Israelites under Ezra -  around sixty

years after the first bunch came back.


v. 6 - “This Ezra....was a ready scribe in the law of Moses which

            the Lord God of Israel had given..”


Ezra recognizes that the law was not a mere human code given

by an earthly lawgiver, nor just a national treasure accumulated

over the centuries but a direct Divine gift - “the Law of the Lord”


The man who would reform others must begin by himself being



v. 10 - “For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the

            Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and



v. 11 - “a scribe of the words of the commandments of the Lord”


Not so much a writer as an expounder.


vs. 11-26 - Artaxerxes helped by facilitating and financing the

            return - up to the amount shown in v. 22




v. 23 - “Whatsoever is commanded by the God of heaven, let

            it be diligently done for the house of the God of



v. 25 - “teach ye them that know them not”



                                    ch. 8


The number of those who went up to Jerusalem with

Ezra and the names of the chief men.


vs. 2-3 - “of the sons of David; Hattush....”


We should expect to find the house of David first but where

do we find them in actual fact?  The royal family ought to

have been foremost in such an undertaking but who was

likely to have felt the evils of captivity as the heirs to the



Only one of his family is mentioned as returning -

Hattush and that third place on the list.


In the first return, Zerubbabel was foremost and there

were 123 returning  men of “Bethlehem” - ch. 2:21


Is this the beginning of the descent which ends long after

finding David’s greatest descendant as the “carpenter’s

son” - Jesus Christ?


v. 15 - as we studied earlier there seems to have been a

            special disinclination on the part of the Levites

            to return to Jerusalem - only seventy-four went up

            with Zerubbabel, when the priests who returned

            were 4,289 - ch. 2:36-40


Now there was not a single Levite  in Ezra’s band - not only

were there none numbered in the first detachment - none

were found after three days search - they were  conspicuous

by their absence” -did the jealous spirit of Korah

(Numbers 16:8-10) still animate the great body of the tribe?


Those who should have been in the van are either in the rear,

or else, not present at all?


v. 18  -


vs. 21-23 - “to ask of Him a right way”

v. 24, 28-29 - “ye are holy” - consecrated to God by

            their office, the priests and Levites were fitting

            custodians of consecrated things.


v. 31 - “the hand of our God was upon us, and He

            delivered us from the hand of the enemy”



How God delivered we are not told but evidently

through no “arm of the flesh” - the hand of God led

them safely through all perils of the way and brought

Ezra and his entourage without loss or damage to



v. 34 - the object was to see that what was delivered

            to Meremoth corresponded exactly with

            what Ezra had given in charge to Sherebiah

            and Hashabiah and others at the river Ahava.


v. 36 - “and they furthered the people, and the house

            of God” - secular supporters of God’s work!




                                    ch. 9


vs. 1-2 - Cause for great alarm!


It seems that during the time between

Zerubbabel’s rule and the coming of Ezra -

the people did what mankind is good at

throughout history - doing “what seemed

good in their own eyes” and it appears

that a fusion had begun between the Jews

and the neighboring nations.



"Excerpted text Copyright AGES Library, LLC. All rights reserved.

Materials are reproduced by permission."


The complaint was not so much that the Jews

had actually adopted idolatrous functions but

that they were not keeping themselves wholly

aloof from them - foreign wives would introduce

idolatrous rites into their very homes.


“so that the holy seed have mingled themselves

with the people of those lands:”


They were “a kingdom of priests, a holy nation”

                                    Ex. 19:6

They were to be “separated from all the people

that were on the face of the earth” - Ex. 33:16

and to be a “peculiar people”


When they mingled with the people of the land

they not only broke a positive command -

Deut. 7:3 - but did their best to frustrate God’s

entire purpose for them and to render all that

He had done for them of no effect.


“the hand of the princes and rulers hath been

chief in this trespass” - the upper classes,

both clerical and lay people, had been the

chief offenders.


vs. 3-5 - Reaction of Ezra


More of horror than grief - a crowd assembled around

him sympathizing with him - they were alarmed

at the transgression of the commands of God -

v. 3 -


Deut. 7:4 - "so will the anger of the Lord be

            kindled against you, and destroy thee



vs. 6-15 - the prayer of Ezra


read highlighted passages


v. 7 - "confusion of face" - stunned - not knowing

            what to do or even say.


v. 11 - the "unclean" and corrupt character of

            the Canaanitish nations was the sole

            reason why their land was taken from them

            and given to the Israelites.


v. 15 - inexcusable guilt in the face of such mercy -

            "the sow that was washed"returning to her

            wallowing in the mire" - II Peter 2:22





                                    ch. 10



This was a national sin!


America's national sins???


A very large assembly came together at the end of

Ezra's prayer - Shechaniah took the lead and proposed

that all present should at once enter into a

special covenant with God that they would

do their utmost to have the mixed marriages

dissolved (they were made contrary to the

law and thus invalid), and the idolatrous wives

and children, sent out of the country.


v. 1 - there was very sore weeping - much sorrow

            but some hope.


v. 2 - "yet now there is hope in Israel concerning

this thing"


v. 6 - mourning and now fasting of the strictest

            kind - without water or food - like that of

            Moses on Mt. Sinai - Ex. 34:28





vs. 7-8 -  "proclamation throughout Judah and

            Jerusalem unto all" that a limit of three

            days to do this was set - absentees were

            threatened with heavy penalties of

            excommunication and forfeiture of



The urgency - within "three days"




v. 9 - All the men of Judah and Benjamin

            assembled - the assembly was accompanied

            by a very heavy rain


vs. 10-11


"to increase the trespass of Israel" - to add to that

which was already too great - the sin had been public -

therefore now publicly "make confession" before God -




(the role of pleasure in worldly society) - "lovers of

pleasure more that lovers of God" is one of the signs of

the end time - II Tim 3:4


"separate yourselves"


v. 12 - Together they said - "as thou hast said, so we

            must do"


This must start individually - not nationally - with

closet prayers, not Cabinet councils nor proclamations.


A national confession and national forsaking of sin -





This applies not only to nations but to churches, families,

individuals - Where there is association with evil,

there must be like association in its repudiation!


"As thou hast said, so we must do" - first carried out

with very great zeal - then carried out with very

great care.


This was done in the face of very great difficulty -

the rain being maybe the least difficulty.


v. 13 - "we are many that have transgressed in

            this thing"


This hit men in a very tender place but there was

very little opposition - but in all true repentance there



Job 34:32 - "If I have done  iniquity, I will do so no




Ps. 119:59-60 - "I made haste and delayed not, to

            keep thy commandments"


v. 15 - my commentary says that the true meaning

            is "Jonathan....and Jahaziah....were employed

            about this matter....Meshullam and Shabbethai

            the Levite helped them"


The opposition did not delay the action more than a

few days.


vs. 16-17 - No time was wasted in carrying this out -

            three months time.


"made an end" - a full end of the matter.


Without partiality  - Whoever offended whether priests,

vs. 20-22, Levites v. 23, singers v. 24 -  or porters v. 24

or laymembers - to the end of v. 44 - however painful it

must be - there was but one measure for all - no

"prima donnas"


vs. 18-43 - the names of those who had married

            strange wives




Ezra punishes the wrong-doers by placing their

name on record that others may fear  - (apparently no

privacy acts in those days) - first place in the catalogue

of offenders were the priests, their sin the greatest

since they were the special custodians of the Law.


Of the laymen, only ten of thirty-six families were



Three of the four priestly families were guilty,

even the near-kindred of the high priest!


Notwithstanding - we find reoccurrence in Neh. 13:23-29

Read Deut. 13:6-11 *******


It was much to have restored to them the

material house of God's presence - It was much

more to have such a reformed "spiritual house"

or congregation, rightly to use that material

house for God's glory.


In the end - Rev. 21:22-27