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Ezra 7:11 - 7:26

The King’s Decree on Behalf of Ezra

11 Now this is the copy of the letter which King Artaxerxes gave to Ezra the priest, the scribe, learned in the words of the commandments of Yahweh and His statutes to Israel:
“Artaxerxes, king of kings, to Ezra the priest, the scribe of the law of the God of heaven, perfect peace. And now—
I have issued a decree that any of the people of Israel and their priests and the Levites in my kingdom who freely offer to go to Jerusalem, may go with you.
Forasmuch as you are sent from before the king and his seven counselors to inquire concerning Judah and Jerusalem according to the law of your God which is in your hand,
and to bring the silver and gold, which the king and his counselors have freely offered to the God of Israel, whose dwelling is in Jerusalem,
and all the silver and gold which you find in the whole province of Babylon, along with the freewill offering of the people and of the priests, who offered willingly for the house of their God which is in Jerusalem;
with this money, therefore, you shall with all diligence buy bulls, rams, and lambs, with their grain offerings and their drink offerings, and bring them near to the altar of the house of your God which is in Jerusalem.
And whatever seems good to you and to your brothers to do with the rest of the silver and gold, you may do according to the will of your God.
Also the utensils which are given to you for the service of the house of your God, deliver in full before the God of Jerusalem.
The rest of the needs for the house of your God, which may fall upon you to provide, provide for it from the royal treasury.
“So I, even I, King Artaxerxes, issue a decree to all the treasurers who are in the provinces beyond the River, that whatever Ezra the priest, the scribe of the law of the God of heaven, may ask of you, it shall be done with all diligence,
even up to 100 talents of silver, 100 kors of wheat, 100 baths of wine, 100 baths of oil, and salt without written order.
Whatever is decreed by the God of heaven, let it be done with zeal for the house of the God of heaven, so that there will not be wrath against the kingdom of the king and his sons.
We also make known to you that it is not allowed to impose tribute, custom, or toll on any of the priests, Levites, singers, doorkeepers, temple servants, or other servants of this house of God.
“And you, Ezra, according to the wisdom of your God which is in your hand, appoint magistrates and judges that they may judge all the people who are in the province beyond the River, even all those who know the laws of your God; and to anyone who does not know the laws, you shall make them known.
Whoever will not do the law of your God and the law of the king, let judgment be done to him with all diligence, whether for death or for banishment or for confiscation of goods or for imprisonment.”