Friday, January 23, 2015

Ezra, Day 5 Readings

Ezra Condemns Marrying Foreigners and the People Respond  

Today's reading continues Ezra's personal description of his leadership upon returning from exile in Babylon.  Upon returning, the priest is appalled to learn that some Jews have married non-Jews (or as they are described in the text, foreigners).  He forcefully condemns this practice, suggesting that it is unfaithful.  And he offers a passionate prayer to God, asking for mercy because he is afraid that God will punish the people by sending them into exile again.

Chapter 10 resumes the historical narrative.  The people, hearing Ezra's denunciation and prayer, respond by systematically identifying all those men who had married foreign wives, including some of the Levitical priests.  All of the non-Jewish wives, along with their children, are sent away as the people purify themselves from foreign influence.

Read Ezra 9:1-10:44  (NIV)   (NRSV)   (CEB)
[links to Bible Gateway open in a new window]

Reading the Bible in Its Entirety

If you are planning to read the Bible in its entirety, you should read Ezra 9-10 today.