1Then the prophets, Haggai the prophet, and Zechariah the son of Iddo, prophesied unto the Jews that were in Judah and Jerusalem in the name of the God of Israel, even unto them.
2Then rose up Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and began to build the house of God which is at Jerusalem: and with them were the prophets of God helping them.
3At the same time came to them Tattenai, governor on this side of the river, and Shethar-bozenai, and their companions, and said thus unto them, Who has commanded you to build this house, and to restore this wall?
4Then said we unto them after this manner, These are the names of the men that make this building.
5But the eye of their God was upon the elders of the Jews, that they could not cause them to cease, till the matter came to Darius: and then they returned an answer by letter concerning this matter.
6The copy of the letter that Tattenai, governor on this side of the river, and Shethar-bozenai, and his companions the governors, who were on this side the river, sent unto Darius the king:
7They sent a letter unto him, in which was written thus; Unto Darius the king, all peace.
8Be it known unto the king, that we went into the province of Judea, to the house of the great God, which is built with great stones, and timber is laid in the walls, and this work goes on diligently , and prospers in their hands.
9Then asked we those elders, and said unto them, Who commanded you to build this house, and to complete these walls?
10We asked their names also, to inform you, that we might write the names of the men that were the chief of them.
11And thus they returned us answer, saying, We are the servants of the God of heaven and earth, and build the house that was built these many years ago, which a great king of Israel built and finished.
12But after that our fathers had provoked the God of heaven unto wrath, he gave them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, the Chaldean, who destroyed this house, and carried the people away into Babylon.
13But in the first year of Cyrus the king of Babylon the same king Cyrus made a decree to build this house of God.
14And the articles also of gold and silver of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar took out of the temple that was in Jerusalem, and brought them into the temple of Babylon, those did Cyrus the king take out of the temple of Babylon, and they were delivered unto one, whose name was Sheshbazzar, whom he had made governor;
15And said unto him, Take these articles, go, carry them into the temple that is in Jerusalem, and let the house of God be built in its place.
16Then came the same Sheshbazzar, and laid the foundation of the house of God which is in Jerusalem: and since that time even until now has it been in building, and yet it is not finished.
17Now therefore, if it seems good to the king, let there be search made in the king's treasure house, which is there at Babylon, whether it be so, that a decree was made of Cyrus the king to build this house of God at Jerusalem, and let the king send his pleasure to us concerning this matter.