Verse 44. "Some of them had wives by whom they had children." - This observation was probably intended to show that only a few of them had children; but it shows also how rigorously the law was put in execution.
According to a passage in Justin Martyr's dialogue with Trypho, a Jew, Ezra offered a paschal lamb on this occasion, and addressed the people thus: "And Ezra said to the people, This passover is our saviour and our Refuge; and if ye will be persuaded of it, and let it enter into your hearts, that we are to humble ourselves to him in a sign, and afterwards shall believe in him, this place shall not be destroyed for ever, saith the Lord of Hosts: but if ye will not believe in him, nor hearken to his preaching, ye shall be a laughing- stock to the Gentiles." -Dial. cum Tryphone, sec. 72.
This passage, Justin says, the Jews, through their enmity to Christ, blotted out of the book of Ezra. He charges them with cancelling several other places through the same spirit of enmity and opposition.
In the Hebrew text this and the following book make but one, though sometimes Neh. is distinguished as the second book of Esdras. In the Masoretic enumeration of sections, &c., both books are conjoined. This may be seen at the end of Nehemiah. I can add nothing of importance to the character of Ezra, which has already been given so much in detail in the introduction to this book.
Corrected, March, 1828.
- A. CLARKE.