King Cyrus of Persia had said that the Israelites could have cedar logs from Lebanon, and so these logs were tied together into rafts and floated by sea to the harbor at Joppa. The Israelites sent food and drink and carts to the cities of Tyre and Sidon as payment for these logs, and they gave money to the stoneworkers and carpenters. 56-57
On the first day of the second month of the second year after the people had returned to Judea and Jerusalem from Babylonia, they began laying the foundation for God's temple. Zerubbabel and Joshua and their relatives started working, and so did the priests, the Levites, and everyone else who had returned. 58
Every Levite over 20 years of age was put in charge of some part of the building project, and they worked together to get the job done. The Levites in charge of the entire project were Joshua and his sons, his brother Kadmiel, and his other relatives; and the sons of Jeshua Emadabun, the sons of Joda son of Iliadun, and their sons and other relatives. While the workers were building the temple, 59-60
the priests put on their robes and blew trumpets and played other instruments in honor of the Lord, and the Levites from the family of Asaph praised God with cymbals. All of them followed the instructions given years before by King David. 61
They praised the Lord and gave thanks as they sang: “Our glorious Lord will be good to his people forever.” 62
Everyone started blowing trumpets and shouting praises to the Lord, because work on the temple had begun. 63
Many of the older priests and Levites and heads of families had seen the former temple, and they cried aloud. 64
Others were happy and celebrated with trumpet blasts and joyful shouts. 65
The trumpets could be heard far away, but up close, the sound of weeping and crying drowned out the sound of the trumpets.
Scripture taken from the Contemporary English Version ®. Copyright © 1995 American Bible Society. Used by permission.