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Chronicles of Jerahmeel, by M. Gaster [1899], at

LXXI. (1) The king then returned to his palace with Daniel, and the Lord showered upon Daniel honour and greatness, and he found favour and kindness in the eyes of the king. A command was then issued in the kingdom, saying: 'In all the land there is no god like the God of Daniel who performs miracles and wonders. May his God be with all the people of His inheritance, and cause them to prosper; and let the great temple of God be built in Judah, and I shall give silver and gold of my treasures for the building until it is completed.'

(2) He then issued orders to all the cities in the land of his rule, by means of runners and horsemen, to permit the Jews to go up to Jerusalem to build the temple of God. This happened in the first year of Cyrus's reign over the Chaldeans. Letters of the king were also sent to all the

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princes on the other side of the river and to the governors, to be in readiness to assist the Jews by attending to all their wants in the matter of the building, such as the supply of wood, stones, wheat, oil, and wine, until the building was completed, and rams and lambs for their sacrifices.

(3) The Jews then rose, all whose hearts were willing, to go up to the house of God. They numbered about four myriads, with Ezra the priest and scribe at their head, as well as Eliakim the priest, Jeshu‘a, Mordecai, and the rest of the chiefs of the fathers belonging to Judah and Benjamin; and, journeying, they came to the other side of the river, and arrived at Jerusalem, where they commenced to lay the foundation of the house of God. When this was finished, the work prospered. There then arose certain wicked men, enemies of the Jews, from the remnant of the nations, e.g., Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiya the Ammonite, and Geshem the Arabian, all of whom wrote evil against the Jews. They sent a letter to the Kings of Media and Persia, saying, 'Be it known to you that if ye build the city of Jerusalem it will be to you a snare, a great evil, and there will arise a great conspiracy against you; for in days of yore the Jews who dealt therein were strong and very hard, and destroyed the whole country. It was for this reason that Nebuchadnezzar, their enemy, exiled them to Babylon. Then the kings had rest, and each dwelt peacefully in his own place. Therefore we send to inform you of it, as we are faithful, for we have eaten at the table of the king, and far be it from us to allow the downfall of the kingdom.' As soon as the letter reached the King of Persia, the work was discontinued until the second year of the reign of Darius.