How much do you know about the Post-Exile Period in biblical history?

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3 Questions

What was the purpose of Ezra's ministry in the post-exile period?

To interpret the meaning of God's word for a new day

Who led the building of Jerusalem's walls during the post-exile period?

Nehemiah

What did Haggai prophesy about the second temple during the post-exile period?

Its glory would surpass the one that Solomon built

Study Notes

The Post-Exile Period: Rebuilding, Restoration, and Reform

  • There was a 60-year gap between the dedication of the second temple and the ministry of Ezra, during which the book of Esther happened in Persia.
  • God called Ezra to teach a new generation of Jews how to live according to God's law, and Nehemiah led the building of Jerusalem's walls to make the land more secure.
  • With the dedication of the city walls in 445 B.C., everything was in place for the coming of the Messiah, with fundamental continuity in Judea and Judaism during the centuries between Nehemiah and Jesus.
  • Haggai, a Jewish exile who had returned to Jerusalem, brought a prophetic word to finish the Lord's temple, promising that the glory of the second temple would surpass the one that Solomon built.
  • Haggai's ministry can be precisely dated to 520 B.C., and he saw the successful completion of the temple.
  • Ezra, known as "Ezra the scribe," was the most important character of the post-exile period, leading a reform of Jewish marriage and interpreting the meaning of God's word for a new day.
  • Ezra had mastered the Scriptures of his day and persuaded a large group of Babylonian Jews to relocate to Jerusalem, leading a group of fewer than 2000 men, plus women and children, on the difficult journey back to Judah.
  • The book of Ezra contains Persian court documents, lists, and narratives written in Hebrew, tracing Ezra's priestly lineage extensively.
  • Ezra's return to Jerusalem and his ministry there in the mid-400s B.C. restored worship of the Lord, culminating in a rebuilt temple, and reestablished Israelite community under Mosaic law, culminating in putting away mixed marriages.
  • Moses' law had forbidden God's covenant people to marry pagans, but Ezra discovered that many of the returning exiles had married those who were not followers of the Lord.
  • Ezra's prayer of grief in response to this discovery is one of the truly heartbreaking prayers in the Bible.
  • Out of concern for God's law, a divorce court was set up that dissolved these unlawful marriages.

Test your knowledge of the Post-Exile Period - a time of rebuilding, restoration, and reform in Judea and Judaism. This quiz covers the key figures, events, and teachings of this important era, including the ministries of Ezra and Nehemiah, the completion of the second temple, and the reform of Jewish marriage laws. Take this quiz to see how much you know about the post-exile period and its significance in biblical history.

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