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Friday, September 12 2014

Ezra 9: Why Did Ezra Ban Marriage To Idol Worshipers?

"Should we again break Thy Commandments, and join in affinity with the people of these abominations?"

The people of Israel and Judah were created from the nations all around them (see also The First Nations Of The New World). There was nothing genetically special or superior about the Israelites because they were descendants and cousins of all of the nations of the world.

There was no "exceptionalism" (except as their excuse to be blatant hypocrites when their behavior was far more morally-rotten than those that they claimed to "lead") of the Israelite people themselves because "Israel" was a prophecy of the coming Kingdom of God that will be composed of all people who repent and obey the LORD (see The Kingdom Of The LORD God).

Why then did Ezra (see The Letter From Artaxerxes To Ezra and Ezra's Journey From Babylon) ban marriage of the people of Judah to people of other nations - when Israel and Judah were themselves those same people?

Solomon's Harem The answer is found in what Ezra actually banned - marriage to unrepentant people of heathen religions. It was the very reason that Israel was divided in the time of King Solomon (see What Caused Solomon's Idolatry?) and it was the reason that Judah was corrupted in the time that the LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ - see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God) had them taken away into the Babylonian exile (see Why Did Judah Fall To Babylon?). The "holy seed," which referred to the Messiah, was already composed of people of other nations. It was the defiling of the line of the Messiah with heathen religion: "that the holy seed have mingled themselves with the people of those lands ... doing according to their abominations" that was outlawed.

"9:1 Now when these things were done, the princes came to me, saying, The people of Israel, and the priests, and the Levites, have not separated themselves from the people of the lands, doing according to their abominations, even of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites. 9:2 For they have taken of their daughters for themselves, and for their sons: so that the holy seed have mingled themselves with the people of those lands: yea, the hand of the princes and rulers hath been chief in this trespass.

9:3 And when I heard this thing, I rent my garment and my mantle, and plucked off the hair of my head and of my beard, and sat down astonied. 9:4 Then were assembled unto me every one that trembled at the words of the God of Israel, because of the transgression of those that had been carried away; and I sat astonied until the evening sacrifice.

9:5 And at the evening sacrifice I arose up from my heaviness; and having rent my garment and my mantle, I fell upon my knees, and spread out my hands unto the LORD my God, 9:6 And said,

O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift up my face to thee, my God: for our iniquities are increased over our head, and our trespass is grown up unto the heavens. 9:7 Since the days of our fathers have we been in a great trespass unto this day; and for our iniquities have we, our kings, and our priests, been delivered into the hand of the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity, and to a spoil, and to confusion of face, as it is this day.

9:8 And now for a little space grace hath been shewed from the LORD our God, to leave us a remnant to escape, and to give us a nail in his holy place, that our God may lighten our eyes, and give us a little reviving in our bondage. 9:9 For we were bondmen; yet our God hath not forsaken us in our bondage, but hath extended mercy unto us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to give us a reviving, to set up the house of our God, and to repair the desolations thereof, and to give us a wall in Judah and in Jerusalem.

9:10 And now, O our God, what shall we say after this? for we have forsaken thy commandments, 9:11 Which thou hast commanded by thy servants the prophets, saying, The land, unto which ye go to possess it, is an unclean land with the filthiness of the people of the lands, with their abominations, which have filled it from one end to another with their uncleanness. 9:12 Now therefore give not your daughters unto their sons, neither take their daughters unto your sons, nor seek their peace or their wealth for ever: that ye may be strong, and eat the good of the land, and leave it for an inheritance to your children for ever.

9:13 And after all that is come upon us for our evil deeds, and for our great trespass, seeing that thou our God hast punished us less than our iniquities deserve, and hast given us such deliverance as this; 9:14 Should we again break thy commandments, and join in affinity with the people of these abominations? wouldest not thou be angry with us till thou hadst consumed us, so that there should be no remnant nor escaping? 9:15 O LORD God of Israel, thou art righteous: for we remain yet escaped, as it is this day: behold, we are before thee in our trespasses: for we cannot stand before thee because of this." (Ezra 9:1-15 KJV)

Fact Finder: When and where did idol religions begin?
See The History Of Idolatry


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This Day In History, September 12

490 BC: The Battle of Marathon. Athenians defeated the second Persian invasion of Greece at the Greek town of Marathon (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Babylon and Persia and A History Of Jerusalem: Greeks, Ptolemies, Seleucids).

Persian Infantry 1309: The First Siege of Gibraltar began during the Spanish Reconquista; the forces of the Kingdom of Castile against the Emirate of Granada produced a Castilian victory.

1609: English explorer Henry Hudson, while employed by the Netherlands, discovered a river in eastern North America that would later be named after him - the Hudson River. New York City was originally named New Amsterdam by its Dutch founders.

1683: Austrian and Polish forces took Vienna, Austria, back from the Ottomans after the Battle of Kahlenberg (listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire).

1683: Vienna was retaken from the Ottomans.

1722: The Treaty of St. Petersburg ended the Russo-Persian War.

1758: French astronomer Charles Messier began his Messier Catalog of deep-sky objects with the Crab Nebula - the remnants of a supernova explosion that was first observed by Chinese astronomers in 1054.

1848: Switzerland adopted a new constitution under which it became a federal republic.

1878: The obelisk known as Cleopatra's Needle, originally cut from the quarries of Aswan in about 1475 B.C., was erected in London (see also The Cleopatra Connection).

1914: During the First World War (1914-1918), the First Battle of the Aisne in France began. It lasted 17 days. British and French forces battled the Germans to a stalemate; static trench warfare set in on the Aisne and lasted for the next 18 months (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars).

1934: The Baltic Entente, a mutual defense pact by Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, was signed. Intended primarily against Nazi Germany which had replaced the Soviet Union as the greatest (perceived) threat against them.

1938: Adolf Hitler's Nazi Germany annexed Czech Sudetenland.

1962: In a lead-up to the political face-saving "Cuban Missile Crisis" (after the failed CIA "Bay of Pigs" attempted invasion of Cuba), U.S. President Kennedy held a news conference and announced that the U.S. would not tolerate any Soviet base in the western hemisphere (while at the same time the U.S. itself had dozens of offensive bases in the eastern hemisphere, some right on the Russian border, as is still the case today). Militarily, Russian missiles in Cuba actually would have been no greater threat to the U.S. than long-range ballistic missiles launched from Russia (which to this day cannot be stopped - no effective defense has yet been developed that is capable of stopping ballistic missiles) or from missiles and cruise missiles launched by Russian submarines positioned near the U.S. east and west coasts, much closer than Cuba, as is still the case today.

1988: Hurricane Gilbert inflicted heavy damage on Jamaica before turning toward Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula where it caused an estimated $5 billion in damage.

1972: Idi Amin, dictator of Uganda, sent a cable to the United Nations Secretary General to announce that since no statue of Hitler had been erected in Germany, he proposed to set one up in Uganda.

1974: Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia was deposed by a military coup, ending a reign of 58 years.

1990: Agreements were signed by Britain, the U.S., France, Russia, and East and West Germany that permitted the re-unification of Germany - a key event in European history, and Bible prophecy (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).

2003: In Fallujah, US forces shot and killed eight Iraqi police officers in a "friendly fire" incident. Over the course of the first ten years of the conflict that began when George W. Bush ordered the invasion, over 1 million Iraqi people were killed, wounded or maimed, while the country was reduced to rubble and chaos. Bush's justification for the destruction, Iraq's "weapons of mass destruction," were never found, and were later declared to have never existed. Despite a persistent myth, Iraq also had no connection to the 9-11 terrorist attacks; captured documents proved that Saddam Hussein actually viewed Al-Qaeda, the terrorist Muslim organization founded by Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, as a threat to Iraq.





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Copyright © Wayne Blank