The book of Ezra opens with another timestamp. “And in the first year of Cyrus, the king of Persia, at the completion of the word of the Lord from the mouth of Jeremiah, the Lord aroused the Spirit of Cyrus, the king of Persia, and he issued a proclamation throughout his kingdom, and also in writing (Ezra 1:1).” So Jeremiah is in the past, Cyrus is the present king, and his first act, in this book at least, is to invite all of the Jews living in Persia to go back to Jerusalem to rebuild the Temple. Many take up the call, including the leadership of the tribes of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and the Levites. We are told of all of the riches that they brought with them, some of which had come from the first Temple, and some of which was apparently donated, and we’re on the way back to Jerusalem! It’s a short introductory chapter, so I’m sure there’s much more to come, including, hopefully, an explanation of who Ezra is and why he’s the latest to have the gift of prophecy. For now though, things seem positive, so let’s hope it lasts!