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Ezra 5

1 Then the prophets, Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo, prophesied to the Jews who were in Judah and Jerusalem, in the name of the God of Israel, who was over them.
2 So Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel and Jeshua the son of Jozadak rose up and began to build the house of God which is in Jerusalem; and the prophets of God were with them, helping them.
3 At the same time Tatnai the governor of the region beyond the River and Shethar-Boznai and their associates came to them and spoke thus to them: Who has commanded you to build this house and finish this wall?
4 And then spoke to them in this manner: What are the names of the men building this building?
5 But the eye of their God was upon the elders of the Jews, so that they could not make them cease till the matter should be brought before Darius. Then they replied by letter concerning this.
6 This is a copy of the letter that Tatnai, the governor of the region beyond the River, and Shethar-Boznai, and his associates, the Persians who were in the region beyond the River, sent to Darius the king.
7 They sent a letter to him, in which was written thus: To Darius the king: All peace.
8 Let it be known to the king that we went into the province of Judea, to the house of the great God, which is being built with rolling stones, and timber is being laid in the walls; and this work goes on diligently and prospers in their hands.
9 Then we asked those elders, and spoke thus to them: Who commanded you to build this house and to finish these walls?
10 We also asked them their names to inform you, that we might write the names of the men who are chief among them.
11 And thus they returned an answer to us, saying: We are the servants of the God of Heaven and earth, and we are rebuilding the house that was built many years ago, which a great king of Israel built and completed.
12 But because our fathers provoked the God of Heaven to wrath, He gave them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the Chaldean, who has destroyed this house and carried the people away to Babylon.
13 However, in the first year of Cyrus king of Babylon, King Cyrus issued a decree to build this house of God.
14 Also, the gold and silver articles of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple that was in Jerusalem and carried into the temple of Babylon; those King Cyrus took from the temple of Babylon, and they were given to one named Sheshbazzar, whom he had made governor.
15 And he said to him, Take these articles; go, carry them to the temple in Jerusalem, and let the house of God be rebuilt on its place.
16 Then that same Sheshbazzar came and laid the foundation of the house of God in Jerusalem; but from that time even until now it has been building, and it is not yet finished.
17 Now therefore, if it seems good to the king, let a search be made in the king's treasure house, which is there in Babylon, to find out whether it is so that a decree was issued by King Cyrus to build this house of God at Jerusalem, and let the king send us his will concerning this matter.
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