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April 26    Scripture

Bible Names A-G: Ezra


Ezra in Easton's Bible Dictionary help. (1.) A priest among those that returned to Jerusalem under Zerubabel (Neh. 12:1). (2.) The "scribe" who led the second body of exiles that returned from Babylon to Jerusalem B.C. 459, and author of the book of Scripture which bears his name. He was the son, or perhaps grandson, of Seraiah (2 Kings 25:18-21), and a lineal descendant of Phinehas, the son of Aaron (Ezra 7:1- 5). All we know of his personal history is contained in the last four chapters of his book, and in Neh. 8 and 12:26. In the seventh year of the reign of Artaxerxes Longimanus (see DARIUS »T0000975), he obtained leave to go up to Jerusalem and to take with him a company of Israelites (Ezra 8). Artaxerxes manifested great interest in Ezra's undertaking, granting him "all his request," and loading him with gifts for the house of God. Ezra assembled the band of exiles, probably about 5,000 in all, who were prepared to go up with him to Jerusalem, on the banks of the Ahava, where they rested for three days, and were put into order for their march across the desert, which was completed in four months. His proceedings at Jerusalem on his arrival there are recorded in his book. He was "a ready scribe in the law of Moses," who "had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments." "He is," says Professor Binnie, "the first well-defined example of an order of men who have never since ceased in the church; men of sacred erudition, who devote their lives to the study of the Holy Scriptures, in order that they may be in a condition to interpret them for the instruction and edification of the church. It is significant that the earliest mention of the pulpit occurs in the history of Ezra's ministry (Neh. 8:4). He was much more of a teacher than a priest. We learn from the account of his labours in the book of Nehemiah that he was careful to have the whole people instructed in the law of Moses; and there is no reason to reject the constant tradition of the Jews which connects his name with the collecting and editing of the Old Testament canon. The final completion of the canon may have been, and probably was, the work of a later generation; but Ezra seems to have put it much into the shape in which it is still found in the Hebrew Bible. When it is added that the complete organization of the synagogue dates from this period, it will be seen that the age was emphatically one of Biblical study" (The Psalms: their History, etc.). For about fourteen years, i.e., till B.C. 445, we have no record of what went on in Jerusalem after Ezra had set in order the ecclesiastical and civil affairs of the nation. In that year another distinguished personage, Nehemiah, appears on the scene. After the ruined wall of the city had been built by Nehemiah, there was a great gathering of the people at Jerusalem preparatory to the dedication of the wall. On the appointed day the whole population assembled, and the law was read aloud to them by Ezra and his assistants (Neh. 8:3). The remarkable scene is described in detail. There was a great religious awakening. For successive days they held solemn assemblies, confessing their sins and offering up solemn sacrifices. They kept also the feast of Tabernacles with great solemnity and joyous enthusiasm, and then renewed their national covenant to be the Lord's. Abuses were rectified, and arrangements for the temple service completed, and now nothing remained but the dedication of the walls of the city (Neh. 12).
http://www.bible-history.com/eastons/E/Ezra/


Ezra in Fausset's Bible Dictionary ("the helper," as Nehemiah means "the comforter".) 1. A "ready scribe in the law of Moses" (Ezra 7:6; Ezra 7:11-12); "a scribe of the words of the commandments of the Lord and of His statutes to Israel"; "a scribe of the law of the God of heaven"; "priest"; a worthy descendant of Hilkiah the priest under Josiah, who "found the book of the law in the house of the Lord" (2 Chronicles 34:14-15); son or descendant of Seraiah (not the high priest. Seraiah, Ezra 7:1). See Ezra 7-10; also Nehemiah 8; Nehemiah 12:26. Resided in Babylon under Artaxerxes Longimanus. His qualification for his work was "he had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments." By the king's leave, in the seventh year of his reign, he took to Jerusalem 1,754 persons, including Israelites, priests, Levites, singers, porters, and Nethinim (Ezra 7:7; Ezra 8). The journey occupied four months. They brought free will offerings, gold, silver, and vessels, from the king and his counselors, as well as from the Jews abroad. Artaxerxes empowered him also to draw upon the royal treasurers beyond the river for further supplies if necessary; also the decree added. "thou Ezra, after the wisdom of thy God that is in thine hand, set magistrates and judges which may judge all the people that are beyond the river, all such as know the laws of thy God; and teach ye them that know them not." He committed for safety the charge of the gold and silver to 12 priests and 12 Levites (Ezra 8:24 translated "I separated 12 of the chief priests in addition to Sherebiah, Hashabiah, and ten of their brethren with them": compare Ezra 8:18-19). These delivered them up "to the chief of the priests, Levites. and fathers at Jerusalem, in the chambers of the house of the Lord."...
http://www.bible-history.com/faussets/E/Ezra/


Ezra in Hitchcock's Bible Names help; court
http://www.bible-history.com/hitchcock/E/Ezra/


Ezra in Naves Topical Bible 1. A famous scribe and priest Ezr 7:1-5,6,10,21; Ne 12:36 Appoints a fast Ezr 8:21 Commissioned by Artaxerxes, returns to Jerusalem with a large group of Jews Ezr 7:8 His charge to the priests Ezr 8:29 Exhorts people to put away their heathen wives Ezr 9; 10:1-17 Reads the law Ne 8 Reforms corruptions Ezr 10; Ne 13 Dedicates the wall of Jerusalem Ne 12:27-43 -2. A leading priest among the colonists under Zerubbabel Ne 12:1 Probably identical with AZARIAH in Ne 10:2 And Ezr 7:1 -3. A descendant of Judah 1Ch 4:17
http://www.bible-history.com/naves/E/EZRA/


Ezra in Smiths Bible Dictionary (help), called ESDRAS in the Apocrypha, the famous scribe and priest. He was a learned and pious priest residing at Babylon in the time of Artaxerxes Longimanus. The origin of his influence with the king does not appear, but in the seventh year of his reign he obtained leave to go to Jerusalem, and to take with him a company of Israelites. (B.C. 457.) The journey from Babylon to Jerusalem took just four months; and the company brought with them a large freewill offering of gold and silver, and silver vessels. It appears that Ezra's great design was to effect a religious reformation among the Israel Jews. His first step was to enforce separation upon all who had married foreign wives. Ezr 10:1 ... This was effected in little more than six months after his arrival at Jerusalem. With the detailed account of this important transaction Ezra's autobiography ends abruptly, and we hear nothing more of him till, thirteen years afterwards, in the twentieth of Artaxerxes, we find him again at Jerusalem with Nehemiah. It seems probable that after effecting the above reformations he returned to the king of Persia. The functions he executed under Nehemiah's government were purely of a priestly and ecclesiastical character. The date of his death is uncertain. There was a Jewish tradition that he was buried in Persia. The principal works ascribed to him by the Jews are-- 1. The instruction of the great synagogue; 2. The settling the canon of Scripture, and restoring, correcting and editing the whole sacred volume; 3. The introduction of the Chaldee character instead of the old Hebrew or Samaritan; 4. The authorship of the books of Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, and, some add, Esther; and, many of the Jews say, also of the books of Ezekiel, Daniel, and the twelve prophets; 5. The establishment of synagogues.
http://www.bible-history.com/smiths/E/Ezra/


Ezra in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE ez'-ra (Aramaic or Chaldee, `ezra', "help"; a hypocoristicon, or shortened form of Azariah, "Yahweh has helped." The Hebrew spells the name `ezrah, as in 1 Ch 4:17, or uses the Aramaic spelling of the name, as in Ezr 7:1. The Greek form is Esdras): (1) A priest who returned with Zerubbabel from Babylon (Neh 12:1). In Neh 10:2, Azariah, the full form of the name, is found. (2) A descendant of Judah and father of Jethro and other sons (1 Ch 4:17). (3) The distinguished priest who is the hero of the Book of Ezra and co-worker with Nehemiah. 1. Family: The genealogy of Ezra is given in Ezr 7:1-6, where it appears that he was the son of Seraiah, the son of Azariah, the son of Hilkiah, the son of Shallum, the son of Ahitub, the son of Amariah, the son of Azariah, the son of Meraioth, the son of Zerahiah, the son of Uzzi, the son of Bukki, the son of Abishua, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, the high priest. Since Seraiah, according to the Book of Kings, was killed by Nebuchadrezzar at Riblah (2 Ki 25:18-21), and since he was the father of Jehozadak, the high priest who was carried into captivity by Nebuchadrezzar (1 Ch 6:14,15 (Hebrew 5:40), etc.) in 588 BC, and since the return under Ezra took place in 458 BC, the word "son" must be used in Ezr 7:2 in the sense of descendant. Since, moreover, Joshua, or Jeshua, the high priest, who returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel, was the son of Jehozadak and the grandson of Seraiah, Ezra was probably the great- grandson or great-great-grandson of Seraiah. Inasmuch as Jehozadak is never mentioned as one of his forefathers, Ezra was probably not descended from Jehozadak, but from a younger brother. He would thus not be a high priest, though he was of high-priestly descent as far as Seraiah. For the sake of shortening the list of names, six names are omitted in Ezr 7:2-7 between Azariah and Meraioth, and one between Shallum and Ahitub from the corresponding list found in 1 Ch 6:4-14 (Hebrew 5:30-40)...
http://www.bible-history.com/isbe/E/EZRA/


Ezra in Wikipedia (Hebrew: עֶזְרָא, Modern Ezra Tiberian ʻEzrÔ; Greek: Έσδράς; Latin: Esdras) was a Jewish priestly scribe who led about 5,000 Israelite exiles living in Babylon to their home city of Jerusalem in 459 BCE. Ezra reconstituted the dispersed Jewish community on the basis of the Torah and with an emphasis on the law. According to the Hebrew Bible, Ezra resolved the identity threat which arose by the intermarriage between Jews and foreigners and provided a definite reading of the Torah.[1][2] Ezra is highly respected in the Jewish tradition. His knowledge of the Torah is considered to have been equal with Moses.[3] Like Moses, Enoch, and David, Ezra is given the honorific title of "scribe" and is referred to as עזרא הסופר, or "Ezra the scribe" in the Jewish tradition.[4] Although not mentioned at all in the Qur'an among the Islamic prophets, he is considered as one of the prophets by some Muslim scholars, based on Islamic traditions...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ezra


Ezra Scripture - Nehemiah 8:4 And Ezra the scribe stood upon a pulpit of wood, which they had made for the purpose; and beside him stood Mattithiah, and Shema, and Anaiah, and Urijah, and Hilkiah, and Maaseiah, on his right hand; and on his left hand, Pedaiah, and Mishael, and Malchiah, and Hashum, and Hashbadana, Zechariah, [and] Meshullam.
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Nehemiah/8/


Ezra Scripture - Nehemiah 8:5 And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was above all the people;) and when he opened it, all the people stood up:
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Nehemiah/8/


Ezra Scripture - Nehemiah 8:6 And Ezra blessed the LORD, the great God. And all the people answered, Amen, Amen, with lifting up their hands: and they bowed their heads, and worshipped the LORD with [their] faces to the ground.
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Nehemiah/8/


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