Now when thesethings had been completed, the princesapproached me, saying, "The people of Israel and the priests and the Levites have not 1separated themselves from the peoples of the lands, 2according to their abominations, those of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians and the Amorites.
"For 3they have takensome of their daughters as wives for themselves and for their sons, so that 4the holyarace has 5intermingled with the peoples of the lands; indeed, the hands of the princes and the rulers have beenforemost in thisunfaithfulness."
When I heard about thismatter, I 6tore my garment and my robe, and pulledsome of the hair from my head and my beard, and 7satdownappalled.
Then 8everyone who trembled at the words of the God of Israel on account of the unfaithfulness of the exilesgathered to me, and I satappalleduntil9the eveningoffering.
But at the eveningoffering I arose from my bhumiliation, even with my garment and my robetorn, and I fell on my knees and 10stretched out my chands to the LORD my God;
and I said, "O my God, I am ashamed and embarrassed to lift up my face to You, my God, for our iniquities have drisenabove our heads and our 11guilt has growneven to the heavens.
"12Since the days of our fathers to thisday we have been in greatguilt, and on account of our iniquities we, our kings and our priests have been given into the hand of the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity and to plunder and to e13openshame, as it is thisday.
"But now for a briefmomentgrace has been shown from the LORD our God, 14to leave us an escapedremnant and to give us a 15peg in His holyplace, that our God may 16enlighten our eyes and grant us a littlereviving in our bondage.
"17For we are slaves; yet in our bondage our God has not forsaken us, but 18has extendedlovingkindness to us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to give us reviving to raise up the house of our God, to restore its ruins and to give us a wall in Judah and Jerusalem.
10"Now, our God, what shall we sayafterthis? For we have forsaken Your commandments,
11which You have commanded by Your servants the prophets, saying, 'The landwhich you are entering to possess is an uncleanland with the uncleanness of the peoples of the lands, with their abominationswhich have filled it from end to end and 19with their impurity.
'So now do not 20give your daughters to their sonsnortake their daughters to your sons, and 21neverseek their peace or their prosperity, that you may be strong and eat the good things of the land and 22leave it as an inheritance to your sonsforever .'
13"Afterall that has come upon us for our evildeeds and 23our greatguilt, since You our God have requited us lessthan our iniquities deserve, and have given us 24an escapedremnant as this,
1425shall we againbreak Your commandments and intermarry with the peoplesfwho commit theseabominations? 26Would You not be angry with us gto the point of destruction, untilthere is noremnantnor any who escape?
"O LORDGod of Israel, 27You are righteous, for we have been left an escapedremnant, as it is thisday; behold, we are before You in 28our guilt, for 29noone can standbefore You because of this."