- God graciously restores the remnant of his people to the law, land and temple.
- The returned exiles can now see God’s righteousness, their sinfulness, and their need to repent and rely on His grace.
- Even as the remnant rejoices in their restoration, they are still full of mourning and longing, centred around the desire to see a Son of David return to the throne.
- In what ways did God make use of the kings and powers of the world for the good of his people?
- How does the physical restoration of Jerusalem and the temple point to what God was working in the heart of his people?
- What do the prayers of Ezra and Nehemiah show that God’s people have learned from their exile?
- Why was the laying of the foundation of the new temple such a wonderful moment? Why was it such a painful moment?
- How can the remnant expect a greater kingdom than the one they had previously known, even though they had already seen how their sin had led to the fall of the previous kingdom?
- What promises were made regarding the future Son of David which these exiles could hope in?
- How is our situation similar to that of these returned exiles? In what ways should we be similarly impacted by their history and their hope?