A Decree Makes the Men Stop Rebuilding17 Then the king sent an edict to Rehum the commander, to Shimshai the scribe, and to the rest of their colleagues who live in Samaria and in the rest of the provinces beyond the River: “Peace. And now— 18 the document which you sent to us has been plainly read before me. 19
So a decree has been issued by me, and a search has been made and it has been found that that city has lifted itself up against the kings in past days, that rebellion and revolt have been perpetrated in it, 20
that strong kings have been over Jerusalem, even rulers in all the provinces beyond the River, and that tribute, custom, and toll were given to them. 21
Now issue a decree to make those men stop, that this city may not be rebuilt until a decree is issued by me. 22
And beware of being negligent in doing this matter; why should harm increase to damage the kings?” 23 Then as soon as the copy of King Artaxerxes’ document was read before Rehum and Shimshai the scribe and their colleagues, they went in haste to Jerusalem to the Jews and stopped them by force and military. 24 Then the work on the house of God in Jerusalem stopped, and it was stopped until the second year of the reign of Darius king of Persia.