Cyrus: The Persian conquest of Babylon, the return to Israel and the
fulfillment of the prophecies of Jeremiah.
During the reign of the Jehoiakim (Yehoyokim), the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzer conquered the land of Judea, and forced them to pay him tribute. Seven years later, under Jehoiakim’s successor and son, Yehoyochin, Judea was once again reconquered and the elite of Judea were exiled to Babylon. Yehoyochin himself was exiled and imprisoned and his uncle, Zedekiah (Tzidkiyahu), crowned king. Eleven years later, the Babylonians returned with a vengeance and destroyed the Temple, killed the majority of the remaining populace, and exiled the shattered remnants to Babylon. Seventy years after Nebuchadnezzar’s intial conquest, Cyrus (Koresh), king of Persia, after having conquered the Babylonian empire, let the Jews return to Judea. Over forty two thousand Jews returned and work on the Temple commenced but was halted. Eighteen years later, seventy years after the destruction of the First Temple, the Second Temple began to be rebuilt in earnest. These events and the seventy year intervals were predicted by the prophets. The story of the rise and predicted fall of the Babylonian empire, the writing on the wall that predicted the fall of the last of the Babylonian kings, Belshazzer, and the fulfillment of the seventy year prophecies are the subjects of this lecture.
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