The testimonies included in the Chronicles and the books of Ezra delineate and describe the formation of Judaism. These books, that came into the canon of the Hebrew Bible at a later date, remain inseparable.

The deportation of the elites within the tribe and land of Judah in 606 and 587 BC put an end to the nation of Israel in the land of Palestine. [Most of those people included within the northern tribes of Ephraim, Manasseh and other less important tribes had already ceased to exist as the "Kingdom of Israel" after the Assyrian deportations of 634 and 621. When Cyrus from Persia took over Babylon, in his decree of 538 he invited the deportees from Judah not to rebuild their kingdom, but instead a Persian province of Jerusalem. Nothing of the sort ever happened with the northern tribes. They were never able to impose their culture and religion on the Canaanites and on the new immigrants with whom they had intermingled.

It was Ezra who really established "Judaism" by making the reading and practical application of the Mosaic Law into the supreme rule for the community.

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    15 Minutes

Chapter 1; Verses 1 to 11

End of the Babylonian Captivity


St Edward the Confessor


"King Cyrus himself brought out the vessels of the house of the Lord that Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Jerusalem,..."

Chapter 2; Verses 1 to 70

List of the Returned Exiles


Holiday Inn


"Now these were the people of the province who came from those captive exiles..."

Chapter 3; Verses 1 to 7

Worship Restored at Jerusalem


Stableside Guesthousing


"They set up the altar on its foundation, because they were in dread of the neighbouring peoples,..."

Chapter 3; Verses 8 to 13

Foundations Laid for the Temple


Pinfold for Sheep & Cattle


"... for the people shouted so loudly that the sound was heard far away."

Chapter 4; Verses 1 to 5

Resistance to Rebuilding the Temple

A5_Racing Signboard

Racing - Sign Board


"Then the people of the land discouraged the people of Judah, and made them afraid to build, and they bribed officials to frustrate their plan..."

Chapter 4; Verses 6 to 24

Rebuilding of Jerusalem Opposed

A6_Telephone Exchange

Old Telephone Exchange


"You will discover in the annals that this is a rebellious city, hurtful to kings and provinces, and that sedition was stirred up in it from long ago."

Chapter 5; Verses 1 to 17

Restoration of the Temple Resumed

A8_St Leonerds Hospice

St Leonard's Hospice


"We are the servants of the God of heaven and earth, and we are rebuilding the house that was built many years ago,..."

Chapter 6; Verses 1 to 12

The Decree of Darius

A9_York College

York College


"... a beam shall be pulled out of the house of the perpetrator, who then shall be impaled on it. The house shall be made a dunghill."

Chapter 6; Verses 13 to 18

Completion and Dedication of the Temple

B1_Trans pennine Trail

Trans Pennine Trail - Route N65


"They finished their building by the command of the God of Israel and by decree of Cyrus, Darius, and King Artaxerxes of Persia;..."

Chapter 6; Verses 19 to 22

The Passover Celebrated

B2_Picnic Area

Picnic Spot


"... for the Lord had made them joyful, and had turned the heart of the King of Assyria to them,..."

Chapter 7; Verses 1 to 10

The Coming & Work of Ezra

B3_Oak Tree

The Great Oak Tree


"For Ezra had set his heart to study the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach the Statutes and ordinances in Israel."

Chapter 7; Verses 11 to 28

The Letter of Artaxerxes to Ezra

B4_Footpath to College Grounds

Footpath to College Grounds


"I took courage, for the hand of the Lord my God was upon me, and I gathered leaders from Israel to go up with me."

Chapter 8; Verses 1 to 14

Heads of Families Who Returned with Ezra

B6_Seven Furlong Start

Seven Furlong Start


"Of the descendants of Bigvai, Uthai and Zaccur, and with them seventy males."

Chapter 8; Verses 15 to 20

Servants for the Temple

B7_Five & Six Furlong Start

Six Furlong Start


"As I reviewed the people and the priests, I found there none of the descendants of Levi."

Chapter 8; Verses 21 to 23

Fasting and Prayer for Protection

B8_Railway Sleeper Bench

Railway Sleeper Bench


"So we fasted and petitioned our God for this, and he listened to our entreaty."

Chapter 8; Verses 24 to 30

Gifts for the Temple

B9_Cycle Path Sign

Cycle Path - Bench & Sign


"And I weighed out to them the silver and the gold and the vessels, the offering for the house of our God..."

Chapter 8; Verses 31 to 36

The Return To Jerusalem

C1_Racecourse Footbridge

Footbridge into the Race Course


"Then we left the River Ahava on the twelfth day of the first month, to go to Jerusalem;..."

Chapter 9; Verses 1 to 4

Denunciation of Mixed Marriages

C2_Hamilton Panthers FC

Hamilton Panthers FC


"When I heard this, I tore my garment and my mantle, and pulled hair from my head and beard and sat appalled."

Chapter 9; Verses 5 to 15

Ezra's Prayer

C3_Knavesmire Cottage

Race Course Cottage


"For we are slaves; yet our God has not forsaken us in our slavery, but has extended to us his steadfast love before the Kings of Persia,..."

Chapter 10; Verses 1 to 5

The Peoples Response

"In the beginning when God Created the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep..."

The Tyburn - Tadcaster Road


"So now let us make a covenant with God to send away all these wives and their children,..."

Chapter 10; Verses 6 to 44

Foreign Wives and Their Children Rejected

"In the beginning when God Created the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep..."

The Marriot Hotel


"You have trespassed and married foreign women, and so increased the guilt of Israel."

A Poem by Charles Causley

I am the Great Sun

C3_Knavesmire Cottage

The War Memorial - St Eds


"From a Normandy Crucifix of 1632 ... I am the captive but you do not free me, I am the captain but you will not obey, I am the truth but you will not believe me,..."