Of the sons of Shecaniah, of the sons of Parosh; Zechariah: and with him were registered by genealogy of the men a hundred and fifty.
Read Chapter 8
But in the second year of their arrival at the temple of God in Jerusalem, in the second month, Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua son of Jozadak, together with the rest of their brethren, the priests and the Lévites, and all that had come to Jerusalem from the captivity, made a beginning. They appointed Lévites from twenty years old and above to hasten forward the work of the Lord. It says they came to the temple of God not because they found the temple already built, since, to be sure, it was said earlier that it did not yet have foundations. Rather, 'to the temple of God' means to the place of God's temple - to the work by which they desired to rebuild the temple. And so modern Jews who habitually claim that not the temple walls but only the roof was destroyed by the Chaldeans are mistaken, since Ezra plainly writes that the descendants of the exiles rebuilt the temple from its foundations. However, since it was said above that they came to Jerusalem in the seventh month, and here it is added that in the second year of their arrival they began the work of the temple in the second month, it is clear that for seven months they prepared the stones, cement, timber, and other necessary materials, but when the eighth month began they started to press on at last with their longed-for work; for there were six months in the first year and the seventh in the following. Any learned person will very easily find a great mystery in this. For seven pertains to the sabbath, on which day the Lord either rested from all his works after he created the earth, or when he redeemed the world through his passion and rested in the tomb, eight to the first day after the sabbath on which he rose from the dead; seven looks to the hope of our sabbath rest after death, eight to the joy of our everlasting happiness after resurrection. Therefore, because all the work of the elect, who are God's temple and house, both begins and is completed through the grace of the Holy Spirit and is accomplished with a complete regard and aspiration for future repose and immortality, rightly from the seventh month do the temple builders, after offering holocausts to God, begin to prepare the materials for building and, having prepared the expenses for seven months, undertake the work itself in the eighth. No other number is at all discovered in the preparation of such a great work than that one which figuratively denotes either the sevenfold grace of the Holy Spirit, by which we are aided as we work, or the repose of our souls or the resurrection of our bodies, which we hope for5 when we do good works.