|ZERUBBABEL OR ZOROBABEL |
Son of Salathiel of the royal race of David, called "Sheshbbazzar the prince of Judah" in Ezra 1:8. Zerubbabel, as his name imports, was born in Babylon, and was the leader of the first colony of Jews which returned from the Babylonish captivity, 536 B. C. Cyrus committed to his care the sacred vessels of the temple, with which he returned to Jerusalem, Ezra 1:11. He is always named first, as being chief of the Jews that returned to their own country, Ezra 2:2 3:8 5:2 Haggai 1:1 2:1-9,21-23. He laid the foundations of the temple, Ezra 3:8,9 Zechariah 4:9, and restored the worship of the Lord, and the usual sacrifices.
When the Samaritans offered to assist in rebuilding the temple, Zerubbabel and the principal men of Judah refused them this honor, since Cyrus had granted his commission to the Jews only, Ezra 4:2,3. They procured from the Persian court an order that the work should cease; and it was not resumed until the second year of Darius son of Hystapes, 521 BC. We know nothing further of his history, except that from him both Joseph and Mary descended, Matthew 1:13 Luke 3:27.