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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible

Ezra 10

 

 

Verses 1-5

Ezra 10:1-5. The People Swear to Put away their Foreign Wives.—The narrative now proceeds in the third person.

Ezra 10:2. Shecaniah: a common name; not necessarily identical with the person of this name referred to in Ezra 10:26.—yet now: i.e. "nevertheless"; the evil could be done away by making a covenant with God (see Ezra 10:3).

Ezra 10:3. to put away all the wives . . . them: it does not seem to have struck Ezra that a better and more humane way would have been to receive the wives and children into the pale of Judaism.


Verses 6-17

Ezra 10:6-17. The Jews Assemble in Jerusalem; Officers are Appointed from each City to See that the Foreign Wives are Put away.

Ezra 10:6. Jehohanan: cf. Nehemiah 12:13.—and when he came thither: read, "and he lodged there" (mg.), i.e. spent the night there.

Ezra 10:8. forfeited: "devoted," i.e. put under a religious ban (see pp. 99, 114, Deuteronomy 2:34* Joshua 6:17*).—separated from the congregation: equivalent to the later "put out of the synagogue"; cf. John 9:22.

Ezra 10:9. within . . . of the month: Chislev was the ninth month = December approximately, in the rainy season. Ezra arrived in Jerusalem on the first day of the fifth month of the seventh year of Artaxerxes (Ezra 7:8 f.); after three days a great burnt sacrifice was offered (Ezra 8:32 ff.); immediately after this (Ezra 9:1) the matter of the mixed marriages was brought to Ezra's notice; this culminated in the calling of the assembly (Ezra 10:7 ff.), which took place three days after having been proclaimed, on the twentieth day of the ninth month! Clearly the sources have been somewhat mixed up.—the broad place before the house of God: i.e. the open space before the water gate (see Nehemiah 3:26; Nehemiah 8:1).—trembling because of this matter and . . .: the conjunction of these two thoughts is somewhat incongruous; it is possible that the words "because of this matter and" are a later addition. The parallel passage in the Greek Ezra (Ezra 9:6) runs more naturally: "trembling in the broad place before the Temple because of the present foul weather"; by "trembling" we must understand "shivering," not the result of fear, but the physical discomfort of standing in the rain.

Ezra 10:10. Ezra the priest: cf. Ezra 7:11; Ezra 7:21, Nehemiah 12:26.

Ezra 10:11. make confession: see Ezra 10:1, where the ordinary word for making confession is used; the Heb. word here means lit. "give praise," but that is incongruous in this connexion. If the text is out of order the corruption must be old, for the same reading occurs in the Greek Ezra. Perhaps Batten is right in saying that the idea may be that praise was due to God because the culprits were brought to a state of amendment.—the God of your fathers: read, with the Greek Ezra, "our fathers."

Ezra 10:12. As thou hast said . . . do: the LXX has what certainly seems to be a more natural reply, viz. "Great is this thy demand for us to do," i.e. thou hast asked a hard thing of us.

Ezra 10:15. Only: better, "but."—stood up against this matter: the RVm, "were appointed over this," may be disregarded; for the Heb. phrase cf. Leviticus 19:16, 1 Chronicles 21:1. Although here only a few are mentioned who withstood Ezra's tyranny, it is clear (Ezra 10:17*) from the Book of Neh. that they were followed by many others who protested against their homes being broken up.

Ezra 10:16. the tenth month: Tebeth = January approximately.

Ezra 10:17. This does not agree with what is said in Nehemiah 9:2; Nehemiah 13:23; Nehemiah 13:26-28.—the first day of the first month: i.e. the 1st of Nisan, in the eighth year of Artaxerxes; the matter, therefore, took about three months.


Verses 18-44

Ezra 10:18-44. A List of those who had Married Foreign Wives.—These include seventeen priests, together with Levites, singers, and doorkeepers, and also laymen.

 


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Ezra 10:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/ezra-10.html. 1919.

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