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Ezra 8:15-20

Context
The Exiles Travel to Jerusalem

8:15 I had them assemble 1  at the canal 2  that flows toward Ahava, and we camped there for three days. I observed that the people and the priests were present, but I found no Levites there. 8:16 So I sent for Eliezer, Ariel, Shemaiah, Elnathan, Jarib, Elnathan, 3  Nathan, Zechariah, and Meshullam, who were leaders, and Joiarib and Elnathan, who were teachers. 8:17 I sent them to Iddo, who was the leader in the place called Casiphia. I told them 4  what to say to Iddo and his relatives, 5  who were the temple servants in 6  Casiphia, so they would bring us attendants for the temple of our God.

8:18 Due to the fact that the good hand of our God was on us, they brought us a skilled man, from the descendants of Mahli the son of Levi son of Israel. This man was Sherebiah, 7  who was accompanied by his sons and brothers, 8  18 men, 8:19 and Hashabiah, along with Jeshaiah from the descendants of Merari, with his brothers and their sons, 20 men, 8:20 and some of the temple servants that David and his officials had established for the work of the Levites – 220 of them. They were all designated by name.

1 tn Or “I gathered them.”

2 tn Heb “river.” So also in vv. 21, 31.

3 tc The name “Elnathan” occurs twice in this list. Some, assuming an accidental repetition, would include it only once (cf. NAB).

4 tn Heb “I placed in their mouth words.”

5 tc The translation reads with the LXX and Vulgate וְאֶחָיו (vÿekhayv, “and his brethren” = “relatives”; so NCV, NLT) rather than the reading אָחִיו (’akhiyv, “his brother”) of the MT.

6 tn Heb “in the place called.” This phrase has not been repeated in the translation for stylistic reasons.

7 tn Heb “and Sherebiah.” The words “this man was” are not in the Hebrew text, but have been supplied in the translation for clarity and for stylistic reasons.

8 tn Or “relatives” (so CEV; NRSV “kin”); also in v. 19.



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