people of the land
4:4 people of the land. These “people of the land” thus demonstrated their insincerity in offering to help build the temple. They claimed to worship the true God of creation as Israel did (Ezra 4:2) but actually they had mixed this with the worship of the pagan gods of Israel’s ancient adversaries (II Kings 17:33). It was vital that true Biblical theism not be corrupted with pagan pantheism.