OLD TESTAMENT SURVEY

Compiled by: Gary W. Summers


   

EZRA

OUTLINE
1. The Return Under Zerubbabel (1-6) 2. The Return Under Ezra (7-10)
EXPLANATION
After Babylon is conquered by the Medo-Persians, King Cyrus allows the Jews to return to their land and to rebuild the Lord's house (536 B.C.). Zerubbabel and Jeshua the priest lead about 50,000 people back to Jerusalem (2:64-65). In the second year of their return, they lay the foundation of the tabernacle (3:8-13). But then opposition from the people in the land interferes. They appeal to the new king, and work is stopped-until the second year of King Darius (4:24), when Haggai and Zechariah motivated the people to resume the task. The temple is completed in four years (6:15), in the year 516 B.C. Sixty years elapse between Ezra 6 and 7. Just 17 years prior to Ezra's return, Esther saved the Jewish nation. Ezra returns in 457 B.C. with nearly 2,000 men. Over the years the Israelites had inter- married with the people in the land; Ezra deals with this problem.
KEY VERSES
6:6-8 Tattenai, the Tattle-Tale, Gets Taxed. 7:10 "For Ezra prepared his heart to seek the Law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach...." 8:21-22 The Hand of God is Upon Those for Good Who Seek Him. 9:6ff Ezra is Too Ashamed and Humiliated to Lift Up His Face to God. 9:13 God Had Punished Them Less Than Their Iniquities Deserved.
HIGHLIGHTS
6:1-22 The Completion of the House of God. 8:21-36 The Providence of God. 10:1-4 The People's Repentance.
LOWLIGHTS
9:1-15 It is sad, with their past, that Israel chose to intermarry over a period of time with the inhabitants of the land. One would think the lesson had been learned, but at least they responded correctly to this sin (Deut. 7:1-3). They put away their wives and children.

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