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And all the congregation of them that were come again out of the captivity made booths, and sat under the booths: for since the days of Jeshua the son of Nun unto that day had not the children of Israel done so. And there was very great gladness.

New Defender's Study Bible Notes

8:17 very great gladness. Although the children of Israel had occasionally observed the feasts of the Lord, as commanded in Leviticus 23, the observances had generally been perfunctory and often ignored altogether. The Feast of Tabernacles had actually been observed by the captives who returned to Jerusalem with Zerubbabel and Jeshua (Ezra 3:4), but it was not like this, with all the people of Israel dwelling in their own hand-made “booths,” with great gladness everywhere.

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