For our Ezra unit study, we dramatized the events of the book, rebuilt the Temple with blocks, and made a craft to represent leaving Babylon and going to Jerusalem. We are creating unit studies for every book of the Bible, which you can enjoy in the Unit Study Treasure Vault.
First we acted out the different scenes from the book. King Cyrus issued a decree that the Jews could return to Jerusalem to rebuild the Temple. He even gave Ezra money for the supplies he would need, as well as returning the precious Temple goblets and utensils to be used in the service of God.
Here is a drawing of Ezra leading the Jews back to Jerusalem:
We made a model of Babylon (the gorgeous blue gate of Babylon), and we placed it on one end of a long table. (For instructions on how to make the Babylon model, watch the Daniel Unit Study inside the Vault.) On the other end of the table was a model of Jerusalem that we made. (Watch the Lamentations Unit Study to see how we made that model.) We grabbed some toy soldiers, and from one end of the table to the other, we moved a big group of people. Those were the Jewish people, thousands of them in real life were returning with Ezra to Jerusalem.
My son snapped pictures of the soldiers moving little by little from Babylon to Jerusalem, and when I edited the video, I had less than 2 seconds for each slide, fading into each other. It was really cool!
Another great activity that we did was to build the Temple with blocks. The block Temple should be a long rectangle made of 3 squares. The first square is the Holy of Holies blocked off from the other two thirds of the building. My sons wanted me to film and then speed up the video to make it look like they were building it fast. It was great! I thought I was going to have to strip off the sound and add a sound effect, but the sound of the blocks clunking in fast motion sounded like construction work! I praised God because I have felt His presence and blessing on each of these Bible unit studies!
After the Temple was constructed, the people rejoiced. Some of the older people who had seen Solomon’s Temple before the Babylonian captivity were wailing with sorrow while the younger people were shouting for joy. Here is a drawing of people rejoicing over the construction of the Temple:
Ezra then read the entire Word of God to the people while they stood with their wives and children in the rain. They cried when they heard the Word of God because they hadn’t heard it in so long, and they had been walking in disobedience. They were convicted of their sin.
The book of Ezra ends with him listing all the offenders who had married outside the faith. The disobedient people decided to obey God and only marry people who loved the Lord.
If you enjoyed this Ezra Unit Study, why not join the Unit Study Treasure Vault!