6:21 The Israelites who were returning from the exile ate it, along with all those who had joined them 1 in separating themselves from the uncleanness of the nations of the land to seek the Lord God of Israel.
6:22 They observed the Feast of Unleavened Bread for seven days with joy, for the Lord had given them joy and had changed the opinion 2 of the king of Assyria 3 toward them, so that he assisted 4 them in the work on the temple of God, the God of Israel.
1 tn Heb “who had separated from the uncleanness of the nations of the land to them.”
2 tn Heb “heart.”
3 sn The expression “king of Assyria” is anachronistic, since Assyria fell in 612 b.c., long before the events of this chapter. Perhaps the expression is intended subtly to contrast earlier kings of Assyria who were hostile toward Israel with this Persian king who showed them favor.
4 tn Heb “to strengthen their hands.”