The Aramaic continues through this chapter. The chapter describes the beginning of the construction of the Temple. Therefore, it may be looked upon as a continuation of Chapter 3, ignoring for now Chapter 4 and the verses related to the building of Jerusalem. See v. 16 below.
וְהִתְנַבִּי חַגַּי (נְבִיאָה) [נְבִיָּא] וּזְכַרְיָה בַר־עִדֹּוא (נְבִיאַיָּא) [נְבִיַּיָּא] עַל־יְהוּדָיֵא דִּי בִיהוּד 5:1
וּבִירוּשְׁלֶם בְּשֻׁם אֱלָהּ יִשְׂרָאֵל עֲלֵיהֹון׃
Ezra 5:1 And Haggai, the prophet, prophesied, and Zechariah son of Iddo, were the prophets to the Jews who were in Judah and in Jerusalem in the name of the God of Israel concerning them.
In Zech. 1:1, Zechariah is called son of Berechia son of Iddo. The conclusion by many scholars is that Zechariah’s grandfather is being cited here and this is the same Zechariah of the book by his name. As for the errors in the two sets of parentheses, I question the correction in the first set of brackets. The word in the parentheses should be spelled without the heh suffix, but I believe the correct spelling should have a second aleph in its place, being the article the. Then I question the error in the second set of parentheses. I believe it is the correct spelling, which can be translated as the prophets. [Return to Ezra 6:14]
בֵּאדַיִן קָמוּ זְרֻבָּבֶל בַּר־שְׁאַלְתִּיאֵל וְיֵשׁוּעַ בַּר־יֹוצָדָק וְשָׁרִיו לְמִבְנֵא בֵּית אֱלָהָא דִּי בִירוּשְׁלֶם 5:2
וְעִמְּהֹון (נְבִיאַיָּא) [נְבִיַּיָּא] דִי־אֱלָהָא מְסָעֲדִין לְהֹון׃
Ezra 5:2 Thereupon Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel arose, and Jeshua son of Jozadak, and began building the house of God that was in Jerusalem, and with them were the prophets of God who were giving aid to them.
I have the same problem with the word in the parentheses here as the word in the second set of parentheses in v. 1.
בֵּהּ־זִמְנָא אֲתָא עֲלֵיהֹון תַּתְּנַי פַּחַת עֲבַר־נַהֲרָה וּשְׁתַר בֹּוזְנַי וּכְנָוָתְהֹון וְכֵן אָמְרִין לְהֹם מַן־שָׂם 5:3
לְכֹם טְעֵם בַּיְתָא דְנָה לִבְּנֵא וְאֻשַּׁרְנָא דְנָה לְשַׁכְלָלָה׃
Ezra 5:3 At that time Tattenai, a governor beyond the river, came to them, and Shethar-bozenai, and their compatriots, and they were saying to them as follows: “Who set out a decree for you to build this house and to finish this wall?”
אֱדַיִן כְּנֵמָא אֲמַרְנָא לְּהֹם מַן־אִנּוּן שְׁמָהָת גֻּבְרַיָּא דִּי־דְנָה בִנְיָנָא בָּנַיִן׃ 5:4
Ezra 5:4 Then we said to them like this: “What are these names of the men who are building this structure?”
Hold on! Where did the pronoun we come from? It appears as if Tattenei and his retinue were writing this verse. I suspect the word translated as we said (the third word) should have been they said.
וְעֵין אֱלָהֲהֹם הֲוָת עַל־שָׂבֵי יְהוּדָיֵא וְלָא־בַטִּלוּ הִמֹּו עַד־טַעְמָא לְדָרְיָוֶשׁ יְהָךְ וֶאֱדַיִן יְתִיבוּן נִשְׁתְּוָנָא 5:5
Ezra 5:5 Now the “eye” of their God was upon the elders of the Jews, that they did not stop them until the matter could be brought to Darius and after this they could be bringing back the letter concerning this.
פַּרְשֶׁגֶן אִגַּרְתָּא דִּי־שְׁלַח תַּתְּנַי פַּחַת עֲבַר־נַהֲרָה וּשְׁתַר בֹּוזְנַי וּכְנָוָתֵהּ אֲפַרְסְכָיֵא דִּי בַּעֲבַר נַהֲרָה 5:6
Ezra 5:6 The copy of the letter that Tattenai, governor beyond the river, sent together with Shethar-bozenai and his compatriots, the Apharesachites, who were beyond the river, to Darius, the king;
פִּתְגָמָא שְׁלַחוּ עֲלֹוהִי וְכִדְנָה כְּתִיב בְּגַוֵּהּ לְדָרְיָוֶשׁ מַלְכָּא שְׁלָמָא כֹלָּא׃ 5:7
Ezra 5:7 they sent the letter to him, and was written like so therein: “To Darius, the king: All peace!
יְדִיעַ לֶהֱוֵא לְמַלְכָּא דִּי־אֲזַלְנָא לִיהוּד מְדִינְתָּא לְבֵית אֱלָהָא רַבָּא וְהוּא מִתְבְּנֵא אֶבֶן גְּלָל וְאָע 5:8
מִתְּשָׂם בְּכֻתְלַיָּא וַעֲבִידְתָּא דָךְ אָסְפַּרְנָא מִתְעַבְדָא וּמַצְלַח בְּיֶדְהֹם׃
Ezra 5:8 It is to be known to the king that we went to the province of Judah, to the house of the great God, which is being built of giant stone and of timber being set in the walls, and this work is being performed diligently and successfully in their hand.
אֱדַיִן שְׁאֵלְנָא לְשָׂבַיָּא אִלֵּךְ כְּנֵמָא אֲמַרְנָא לְהֹם מַן־שָׂם לְכֹם טְעֵם בַּיְתָא דְנָה לְמִבְנְיָה וְאֻשַּׁרְנָא 5:9
Ezra 5:9 Thereupon we inquired of these elders; accordingly we said to them, ‘Who set out a decree for you to be building this house and to complete this wall?’
וְאַף שְׁמָהָתְהֹם שְׁאֵלְנָא לְהֹם לְהֹודָעוּתָךְ דִּי נִכְתֻּב שֻׁם־גֻּבְרַיָּא דִּי בְרָאשֵׁיהֹם׃ 5:10
Ezra 5:10 And we also asked their names of them to inform you that we could write the name of the men who were leading them.
וּכְנֵמָא פִתְגָמָא הֲתִיבוּנָא לְמֵמַר אֲנַחְנָא הִמֹּו עַבְדֹוהִי דִי־אֱלָהּ שְׁמַיָּא וְאַרְעָא וּבָנַיִן בַּיְתָא דִּי־הֲוָא 5:11
בְנֵה מִקַּדְמַת דְּנָה שְׁנִין שַׂגִּיאָן וּמֶלֶךְ לְיִשְׂרָאֵל רַב בְּנָהִי וְשַׁכְלְלֵהּ׃
Ezra 5:11 And such was the word they gave us back, saying: ‘We are they, the servants of He Who is God of heaven and earth, and are rebuilding the house that had been built a great many years before this, which Israel's greatest king built and finished.
לָהֵן מִן־דִּי הַרְגִּזוּ אֲבָהֳתַנָא לֶאֱלָהּ שְׁמַיָּא יְהַב הִמֹּו בְּיַד נְבוּכַדְנֶצַּר מֶלֶךְ־בָּבֶל (כַּסְדָּיָה) [כַּסְדָּאָה 5:12
וּבַיְתָה דְנָה סַתְרֵהּ וְעַמָּה הַגְלִי לְבָבֶל׃
Ezra 5:12 But because our fathers provoked the God of heaven's ‘rage,’ He gave them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, of the Chaldeans and he destroyed that house and took the people into exile to Babylon.
The error in the parentheses, translated as the Chaldeans, may be misspelled, but I believe the correction after the right bracket may be inappropriate. I think the correct spelling should contain a second yad following the one in the word.
בְּרַם בִּשְׁנַת חֲדָה לְכֹורֶשׁ מַלְכָּא דִּי בָבֶל כֹּורֶשׁ מַלְכָּא שָׂם טְעֵם בֵּית־אֱלָהָא דְנָה לִבְּנֵא׃ 5:13
Ezra 5:13 Only in the first year for Cyrus, the king of Babylon, he set out a decree to rebuild this house of God.
וְאַף מָאנַיָּא דִי־בֵית־אֱלָהָא דִּי דַהֲבָה וְכַסְפָּא דִּי נְבוּכַדְנֶצַּר הַנְפֵּק מִן־הֵיכְלָא דִּי בִירוּשְׁלֶם וְהֵיבֵל 5:14
הִמֹּו לְהֵיכְלָא דִּי בָבֶל הַנְפֵּק הִמֹּו כֹּורֶשׁ מַלְכָּא מִן־הֵיכְלָא דִּי בָבֶל וִיהִיבוּ לְשֵׁשְׁבַּצַּר שְׁמֵהּ דִּי פֶחָה שָׂמֵהּ׃
Ezra 5:14 And also the vessels of the house of God of gold and silver that Nebuchadnezzar had brought out from the Temple that had been in Jerusalem and had carried them to the Temple of Babylon, Cyrus, the king, brought them forth from the Temple of Babylon and they were given to one, Sheshbazzar his name, whom he had appointed governor.
וַאֲמַר־לֵהּ (אֵלֶּה) [אֵל] מָאנַיָּא שֵׂא אֵזֶל־אֲחֵת הִמֹּו בְּהֵיכְלָא דִּי בִירוּשְׁלֶם וּבֵית אֱלָהָא יִתְבְּנֵא 5:15
Ezra 5:15 And he said to him, ‘Take these vessels, go put them down in the Temple that will be in Jerusalem and let the house of God be rebuilt upon its place.’
The word in the parentheses should be spelled as in the correction in the brackets. The heh suffix is superfluous.
אֱדַיִן שֵׁשְׁבַּצַּר דֵּךְ אֲתָא יְהַב אֻשַּׁיָּא דִּי־בֵית אֱלָהָא דִּי בִירוּשְׁלֶם וּמִן־אֱדַיִן וְעַד־כְּעַן מִתְבְּנֵא וְלָא 5:16
Ezra 5:16 Thereupon this Sheshbazzar came; he laid the foundation stones of the house of God that was to be in Jerusalem, and from then and until now it was to have been built, yet it has not been finished.
From this verse we can surmise that this chapter was written before Chapter 4. The phrase until now implies that this was written some time during the early years of Darius’ reign.
וּכְעַן הֵן עַל־מַלְכָּא טָב יִתְבַּקַּר בְּבֵית גִּנְזַיָּא דִּי־מַלְכָּא תַמָּה דִּי בְּבָבֶל הֵן אִיתַי דִּי־מִן־כּוֹרֶשׁ מַלְכָּא 5:17
שִׂים טְעֵם לְמִבְנֵא בֵּית־אֱלָהָא דֵךְ בִּירוּשְׁלֶם וּרְעוּת מַלְכָּא עַל־דְּנָה יִשְׁלַח עֲלֶינָא׃
Ezra 5:17 So now if it be good to the king, let a search be made in the treasure house of the king that is there in Babylon whether it is that from Cyrus, the king, a decree was set out to have this house of God rebuilt in Jerusalem, then let him send to us the pleasure of the king concerning this.”
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