1 And after these things, in the reign of Artaxerxes, king of Persia, Ezra the son of Seraiah, the son of Azariah, the son of Hilkijah, 2 the son of Shallum, the son of Zadok, the son of Ahitub, 3 the son of Amariah, the son of Azariah, the son of Meraioth, 4 the son of Zerahiah, the son of Uzzi, the son of Bukki, 5 the son of Abishua, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the chief priest,
6 this Ezra went up from Babylon; and he was a ready scribe in the law of Moses, which Jehovah the God of Israel had given. And the king granted him all his request, according to the hand of Jehovah his God upon him. 7 (And there went up some of the children of Israel, and of the priests, and the Levites, and the singers, and the doorkeepers, and the Nethinim, to Jerusalem, in the seventh year of Artaxerxes the king.)
8 And he came to Jerusalem in the fifth month, which was in the seventh year of the king. 9 For upon the first of the first month the project of going up from Babylon was determined on, and on the first of the fifth month he came to Jerusalem, according to the good hand of his God upon him. 10 For Ezra had directed his heart to seek the law of Jehovah and to do it, and to teach in Israel the statutes and the ordinances.
11 And this is the copy of the letter that king Artaxerxes gave to Ezra the priest, the scribe, a scribe of the words of the commandments of Jehovah, and of his statutes to Israel: 12 Artaxerxes, king of kings, to Ezra the priest, an accomplished scribe of the law of the God of the heavens, and so forth. 13 I have given orders that all they of the people of Israel, and of their priests and the Levites, in my realm, who are disposed to go to Jerusalem, go with thee. 14 Because thou art sent by the king, and by his seven counsellors, to inquire concerning Judah and Jerusalem, according to the law of thy God which is in thy hand; 15 and to carry the silver and gold which the king and his counsellors have freely offered to the God of Israel, whose habitation is at Jerusalem, 16 and all the silver and gold that thou canst find in all the province of Babylon, besides the voluntary offering of the people, and of the priests, who offer willingly for the house of their God which is at Jerusalem. 17 Therefore thou shalt buy diligently with this money bullocks, rams, lambs, with their oblations and their drink-offerings, and offer them upon the altar of the house of your God which is at Jerusalem. 18 And whatever shall seem good to thee and to thy brethren to do with the rest of the silver and the gold, that do according to the will of your God. 19 And the vessels that have been given thee for the service of the house of thy God, deliver before the God of Jerusalem. 20 And whatever more shall be needful for the house of thy God which thou shalt have occasion to bestow, bestow it out of the king's treasure house. 21 And I, I Artaxerxes the king, do give orders to all the treasurers that are beyond the river, that whatever Ezra the priest and scribe of the law of the God of the heavens shall require of you, it be done diligently, 22 unto a hundred talents of silver, and to a hundred measures of wheat, and to a hundred baths of wine, and to a hundred baths of oil, and salt without prescribing how much. 23 Whatever is commanded by the God of the heavens, let it be carefully done for the house of the God of the heavens; for why should there be wrath against the realm of the king and his sons? 24 Also we inform you, as regards all the priests and Levites, singers, doorkeepers, Nethinim, and ministers of this house of God, it shall not be lawful to impose tribute, tax, and toll upon them. 25 And thou, Ezra, after the wisdom of thy God, which is in thy hand, set magistrates and judges who may judge all the people that are beyond the river, all such as know the laws of thy God; and teach ye him that knows them not. 26 And whosoever will not do the law of thy God and the law of the king, let judgment be executed diligently upon him, whether unto death, or to banishment, or to confiscation of goods, or to imprisonment.
27 Blessed be Jehovah the God of our fathers, who has put such a thing as this in the king's heart, to beautify the house of Jehovah which is at Jerusalem; 28 and has extended mercy to me before the king and his counsellors, and before all the king's mighty princes. And I was strengthened, as the hand of Jehovah my God was upon me; and I gathered together out of Israel chief men to go up with me.