Ezra in Fausset's Bible Dictionary

("the helper," as Nehemiah means "the comforter".) 1. A "ready scribe in the law of Moses" (Ezra 7:6; Ezra 7:11-12); "a scribe of the words of the commandments of the Lord and of His statutes to Israel"; "a scribe of the law of the God of heaven"; "priest"; a worthy descendant of Hilkiah the priest under Josiah, who "found the book of the law in the house of the Lord" (2 Chronicles 34:14-15); son or descendant of Seraiah (not the high priest. Seraiah, Ezra 7:1). See Ezra 7-10; also Nehemiah 8; Nehemiah 12:26. Resided in Babylon under Artaxerxes Longimanus. His qualification for his work was "he had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments." By the king's leave, in the seventh year of his reign, he took to Jerusalem 1,754 persons, including Israelites, priests, Levites, singers, porters, and Nethinim (Ezra 7:7; Ezra 8). The journey occupied four months. They brought free will offerings, gold, silver, and vessels, from the king and his counselors, as well as from the Jews abroad. Artaxerxes empowered him also to draw upon the royal treasurers beyond the river for further supplies if necessary; also the decree added. "thou Ezra, after the wisdom of thy God that is in thine hand, set magistrates and judges which may judge all the people that are beyond the river, all such as know the laws of thy God; and teach ye them that know them not." He committed for safety the charge of the gold and silver to 12 priests and 12 Levites (Ezra 8:24 translated "I separated 12 of the chief priests in addition to Sherebiah, Hashabiah, and ten of their brethren with them": compare Ezra 8:18-19). These delivered them up "to the chief of the priests, Levites. and fathers at Jerusalem, in the chambers of the house of the Lord."...

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