Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Ezra-Darius and the LAST Time the Advisors Tricked Him

By Mary Vee
Ezra 6 

From Darius' Chronicles

Photo Courtesy
My name is Darius. I am king over the territory belonging to the Medes and the Persians which includes the Babylonian provinces. 

One of the problems I am forced to deal with as king is bickering people. 

One recent event really blew up and it was because I listened and didn't check the facts. Well, I made sure to not let that happen again.

What was the problem, you ask? 

Well, a few of my advisors took it upon themselves to spy on the Jews who returned to Jerusalem. I must admit I didn't have the whole story. Before I became king,  the Jewish captives had been given permission to return to their home. Some did. Some did not. I had too many other issues to worry about and didn't have time to deal with this.

A few of my advisors, though, didn't like the situation. They went to Jerusalem and saw the Jews rebuilding their temple. I knew a former king of Babylon, a man named Nebuchadnezzar, had conquered the Jewish city and burned their temple to the ground. 

The advisors wrote me, reporting all the work the Jews were currently doing. They seemed to think this Jewish temple would give power to the Jewish people. They requested I have the work stopped. I didn't see anything wrong with the request. I ordered the work to stop.

A second letter came from my advisors claiming the people had indeed stopped their work at first, but then, resumed. When asked why they were disobeying orders, the Jews claimed Cyrus gave them permission to rebuild.

Cyrus? Really? A former king of the Medes and Persians? 

This new information turned the whole issued into a huge problem. Cyrus was not only a Mede, but also my relative. I couldn't undo one of his orders. I called the guard to conduct a search for Cyrus's decree. It took some time but they finally found it. And to my great disappointment, the Jews were right.

Great. Now I have to undo what I said to the advisors. That doesn't look good for a king.

I called the complaining advisers, Tattenai, governor of Trans-Euphrates and Shethar-Bozenai and their officials to come to my chambers. 

I said to them, "You are to stay away from Jerusalem. Do not interfere with the work on this temple of God. Let the governor of the Jews and the Jewish elders rebuild this house of God on its site. 

I also decree you must pay out of the royal treasury all the funds needed for the construction, specifically from the Trans-Euphrates funds. Whatever is needed--young bulls, rams, male lambs for offerings to the God of heaven, and wheat, salt, wine, and oil, as requested by the priests in Jerusalem must be given to them daily for sacrifices pleasing to the God of heaven and then pray for the well-being of the king and his sons without fail.

AND, I decree that if anyone, ANYONE at all changes this edict, a beam is to be pulled from his house and he is to be lifted up and impaled on it. And for this crime his house is to be made a pile of rubble. May God, who has caused his Name to dwell there, overthrow any king or people who lifts a hand to change this decree or to destroy this temple in Jerusalem.

I, Darius, have decreed it. Let it be carried out with diligence.


Those advisors left with a panic look on their faces. 

I must admit, I found my chat with those advisors rather entertaining. 

Especially when I received the report that they carried out my orders with diligence. That should be the last time they trick me.


1.  Who was Darius?
2.  Why was he upset with his advisors from Trans-Euphrates?
3.  What did he tell them to do?

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