From a blogpost I shared fourteen months ago…
Now when the builders had laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, the priests stood in their apparel with trumpets, and the Levites, the sons of Asaph, with cymbals, to praise the Lord according to the directions of King David of Israel. 11 They sang, praising and giving thanks to the Lord, saying, “For He is good, for His lovingkindness is upon Israel forever.” And all the people shouted with a great shout when they praised the Lord because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid. 12 Yet many of the priests and Levites and heads of fathers’ households, the old men who had seen the first temple, wept with a loud voice when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, while many shouted aloud for joy, 13 so that the people could not distinguish the sound of the shout of joy from the sound of the weeping of the people, for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the sound was heard far away (Ezra 3:10-13 NASB).
This was a time in which rejoicing was most appropriate, and, as well, it was centered up in music and singing, which the Holy Spirit had orchestrated through David many years before. Such worship is carried on to this present hour by those who rejoice in the Testimony of the Messiah and Him Crucified.The Jewish people, in their displays of emotion, whether it was joy or sadness, were very demonstrative.
The Temple was not destroyed at the beginning of the seventy years captivity; in fact, it had probably been destroyed a little less than 50 years before, so there would have been many who remembered its glory well and no doubt wept.
By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yes, we wept, when we remembered Zion. We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst thereof. For there they who carried us away captive required of us a song; and they who wasted us required of us mirth, saying, Sing us one of the songs in a strange land? If I forget you, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning (Psalm 137:1-5 KJV).
Source: Ezra 3