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Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:7-13

Thought, work, and feeling. We have in this passage— I. A TRUE THOUGHT ( Ezra 3:8 ). "Now in the second year of their coming," etc. We can easily imagine any orator among the company of the returned Jews making out a strong case for leaving the building of the temple till better days should dawn. The sufficiency of the altar already reared for the practical purposes of devotion; the readiness of God to accept any offering that came from the heart, however mean the outward... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:7-13

The founding of the temple. The worship of Israel during the first year of the restoration from Babylon was such as could be conducted around an altar in the open. The people naturally felt how imperfectly they could fulfil the law of Moses without a temple, with its courts, its veil, and its sacred furniture. They did not let discouragement paralyse them, but taxed their energies and resources. These words bring under our notice I. THE PREPARATORY WORK . 1. What was... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:8

In the second year. In b.c. 537, the second year of Cyrus in Babylon, which was also the second year of their coming ( i.e. after their coming) to the (ruined) house of God ( Ezra 2:68 ), began Zerubbabel, and the others, and appointed the Levites. Small as the number of the Levites who returned with Zerubbabel was, to them especially was intrusted the work of the house of the Lord, i.e. the superintendence of the workmen employed to rebuild it (see Ezra 3:9 ). read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:8-13

§ 3. REBUILDING OF THE TEMPLE AND OPPOSITION MADE TO IT . read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:8-13

The first stone. We now come in this story to a very critical time. The great work of the restoration of the house, for the sake of which the partial restoration of Israel to Canaan had been brought about and was to continue, at last is before us. We read, on the one hand, of the very last step in the way of prelude and preparation. We read, on the other, of the very first step in the way of actual construction. In both we shall find how much importance is attached to the juncture. I. ... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:8-13

The joyful and sorrowful in religious worship. Here we have illustrated the power of a right leadership, the wisdom of devout co-operation, and the progress of a great enterprise ( Ezra 3:8-10 ). I. The. JOYFUL . in religious WORSHIP . "They sang together" ( Ezra 3:11 ). 1. That God will deign to consecrate by his Presence the temple erected. God will dwell in the temple made with hands; what a condescension and benediction is this toward man; hence the joy. 2. What God... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:9

Jeshua here is the head of the Levitical family mentioned in Ezra 2:40 as "the children of Jeshua," and Kadmiel is the head of the other family. Judah represents the "Hodaviah" of that place, and is probably a corrupt reading, as Nehemiah ( Nehemiah 7:43 ) has "Hodevah." The sons of Henadad, who are here united with the Jeshuites and Kadmielites, constitute a third Levitical family, which (as the text stands) was also engaged in superintending the work. But there is some reason to... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:10

When the builders (Zerubbabel and Jeshua) laid the foundation of the temple, they set the priests in their apparel— the rich apparel, designed "for glory and for beauty," which the law required ( Exodus 28:40 ; Exodus 40:27-29 ), and which the people had recently provided ( Ezra 2:69 ). With trumpets. To blow with trumpets was always the duty of the priests ( Numbers 10:8 ; Numbers 31:6 ; Joshua 6:4 ; 1 Chronicles 15:24 ; 1 Chronicles 16:6 ; 2 Chronicles 5:12 ), to... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:11

They sang together by course. Literally, "They replied (to each other)," or sang antiphonically; the burthen of their song being, that God was good, and his mercy towards Israel everlasting. All the people shouted with a great shout. Shouting on occasions of secular joy and triumph has been practised by most nations, both in ancient and modern times. But religious shouting is less common. Still we hear of such shouting when the ark of the covenant was taken into the Israelite camp near... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Ezra 3:11-13

The foundation laid. The weeping of these old men was the first check on the enthusiasm of the builders of the temple. The books of Ezra and Nehemiah, and the prophecies of Zechariah and Haggai, which illustrate them, are a very troubled history: sorrow, disappointment, and indignation again and again break out; but until now there had been no consciousness of hindrances, or the consciousness had been suppressed. The time of preparation, which is pre-eminently the time of hope, was over;... read more

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