1 Then commanded king Darius, that search should be made in the library of the king's treasure house which lay at Babylon. 2 So at Ecbatana, in a castle that lieth in the land of the Medes, there was found a book, and in it was there an act written after this manner: 3 "In the first year of king Cyrus, commanded the same king Cyrus to build the house of God at Jerusalem, in the place where the sacrifice is made, and to lay the foundation to bear threescore cubits height, threescore cubits breadth, 4 and three walls of all maner of stones, and one wall of timber, and the expenses shall be given of the king's house. 5 And the gold and silver vessels of the house of God - which Nebuchadnezzar took out of the temple at Jerusalem, and brought unto Babylon - shall be restored again, that they may be brought unto the temple at Jerusalem to their place into the house of God." 6 "Get you far from them therefore, thou Tattenai, captain beyond the water, and Shetharbozenai, and your counselors, which are beyond the water, get ye away from them. 7 Let them work in the house of God, that the captain of the Jews and their Elders may build the house of God in his place. 8 I have commanded also, what shall be done to the Elders of Judah for the building of the house of God, that there shall diligently be taken of the king's goods, even of the rents beyond the water, and given unto the men, and that they be not hindered. 9 And if they have need of calves, lambs, or goats, for the burnt offering unto the God of heaven, wheat, salt, wine and oil, after the custom of the priests at Jerusalem, there shall be given them daily as is according: and see that this be done without fault, 10 that they may offer sweet savours unto the God of heaven; and pray for the king's life, and for his children. 11 This commandment have I given. And what man soever he be that altereth these words, there shall a beam be taken from his house, and set up, and he shall be hanged thereon, and his house shall be made a dunghill for the deed. 12 But the God that dwelleth in heaven, destroy all kings and people that put to their hand to alter and to break down the house of God at Jerusalem. I, Darius, have commanded, that this be diligently done."
13 Then Tattenai the captain beyond the water, and Shetharbozenai, with their counselors to whom king Darius the king had sent did their diligence. 14 And the Elders of the Jews builded, and they prospered through the prophesying of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo: and they builded, and laid up the foundation, according to the commandment of the God of Israel, and after the commandment of Cyrus, Darius, and Artaxerxes, kings of Persia. 15 And the house was finished the third day of the month Adar, even in the sixth year of the reign of king Darius.
16 And the children of Israel, the priests, the Levites, and the other children of the captivity held the dedication of the house of God with joy, 17 and offered at the dedication of the house of God, a hundred calves, two hundred lambs, four hundred goats: and for the sin offering for all Israel, twelve he-goats, according to the number of the tribes of Israel, 18 and set the priests in their courses, and the Levites in their offices to minister unto God which is at Jerusalem as it is written in the book of Moses.
19 And the children of the captivity held Passover upon the fourteenth day of the first month: 20 for the priests and Levites had purified themselves, so that they were all clean as one man, and killed Passover for all the children of the captivity, and for their brethren the priests, and for themselves. 21 And the children of Israel which were come again out of captivity, and all such as had separated themselves unto them from the filthiness of the Heathen in the land, to seek the LORD God of Israel, ate 22 and held the feast of unleavened bread seven days with joy: for the LORD had made them glad, and turned the heart of the king of Assyria unto them, so that their hands were strengthened in the work of the house of God, which is the God of Israel.