Ezra 8:21

21 There, by the Ahava Canal, I proclaimed a fast, so that we might humble ourselves before our God and ask him for a safe journey for us and our children, with all our possessions.

Read Ezra 8:21 Using Other Translations

Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river of Ahava, that we might afflict ourselves before our God, to seek of him a right way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance.
Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God, to seek from him a safe journey for ourselves, our children, and all our goods.
And there by the Ahava Canal, I gave orders for all of us to fast and humble ourselves before our God. We prayed that he would give us a safe journey and protect us, our children, and our goods as we traveled.

What does Ezra 8:21 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Ezra 8:21

Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river Ahava
After the messengers to Iddo were returned with those they brought with them:

that we might afflict ourselves before our God;
humble themselves before him for their sins, confess them, and declare their repentance of them, and ask forgiveness for them:

to seek of him a right way for us;
to take from thence towards Jerusalem, to be directed by him in it: either by a prophet, or by a vision in a dream, as Eben Ezra; or rather by the guidance of his providence; this they sought in prayer by the river side, where it had been usual with them, and since has been, to perform religious exercises, see ( Ezekiel 1:1 ) ( 3:15 ) ( Acts 16:13 ) , hence Tertullian F26 calls the prayers of the Jews "orationes littorales"; they sought not so much which was the shortest and easiest way for them to travel in, as which was the safest:

and for our little ones and for all our substance;
for the safe conveyance of them; this shows, that though males only are numbered, as before, yet they had their wives and children with them; for little ones cannot be supposed without women to take care of them.


FOOTNOTES:

F26 Ad nationes, l. 1. c. 13. Vid. lib. de jejuniis, c. 16.
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