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Bible Commentaries

F. B. Hole's Old and New Testament Commentary
Ezra 2

 

 

Verses 1-70

CHAPTER TWO, with the exception of the last three verses, is taken up with details as to the number of those who answered to the proclamation, named under the heads of their families. The heads are named and the families counted. God took note of them and put their names into His record, while those, whose hearts did not stir them up to go, are passed over in silence. Let us take note of this.

The first name mentioned is Zerubbabel, who became the 'Tirshatha', or civil Governor: the second, that of Jeshua, the priest called Joshua in the books of Haggai and Zechariah. These were the leaders in the migration of 42,360 people, besides some servants and other possessions. There was no re establishment of the kingdom, as though the times of the Gentiles had ceased. They were still under Gentile suzerainty.

Still there was a definite revival, and the first mark of it was this: they got back to God's original centre. Compared with the total number of dispersed Jews they were but few, and many of the worldly sort may have nicknamed them 'Zerubbabelites', still they were not that, but simply a few who cared for their God, and sought His original centre.

In the second place, there was no claim to powers they did not possess, since they had been forfeited by previous failure, as we see in verses Ezra 2:59-63. Awkward questions arose, as to whether some were truly children of Israel, and whether others were really children of priests, their genealogies being lost. In earlier days these points might have been settled by an appeal to God through the 'Urim and with Thummim'. This had been lost and they were humble enough to acknowledge it. When God grants a revival after grievous failure. He may not be pleased to restore everything — especially as to outward manifestations of power — just as things were at the first. Let us take note of this — we again would say. Certain manifestations of power, that were seen in apostolic days, are not in evidence today.

A third mark of true revival is seen in the spirit of devotion, that marked some of the 'chief fathers' of the people, when back in the land, as recorded in the closing verses of chapter 2. This spirit may not have continued for long, but it was evidently there at the start. When God begins to work there is always a devoted response on the part of some of His people.

 


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Bibliography Information
Hole, Frank Binford. "Commentary on Ezra 2:4". "F. B. Hole's Old and New Testament Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fbh/ezra-2.html. 1947.

Lectionary Calendar
Tuesday, October 15th, 2019
the Week of Proper 23 / Ordinary 28
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