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Ezra 6:19-22

Context
6:19 1  The exiles 2  observed the Passover on the fourteenth day of the first month. 6:20 The priests and the Levites had purified themselves, every last one, 3  and they all were ceremonially pure. They sacrificed the Passover lamb for all the exiles, for their colleagues 4  the priests, and for themselves. 6:21 The Israelites who were returning from the exile ate it, along with all those who had joined them 5  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 6  of the king of Assyria 7  toward them, so that he assisted 8  them in the work on the temple of God, the God of Israel.

1 sn At this point the language of the book reverts from Aramaic (4:8–6:18) back to Hebrew. Aramaic will again be used in Ezra 7:12-26.

2 tn Heb “the sons of the exile.” So also in v. 20.

3 tn Heb “as one.” The expression is best understood as referring to the unity shown by the religious leaders in preparing themselves for the observance of Passover. On the meaning of the Hebrew phrase see DCH 1:182 s.v. אֶחָד 3b. See also HALOT 30 s.v. אֶחָד 5.

4 tn Heb “brothers.”

5 tn Heb “who had separated from the uncleanness of the nations of the land to them.”

6 tn Heb “heart.”

7 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.

8 tn Heb “to strengthen their hands.”



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