Nehemiah 1

Nehemiah's Grief for the Exiles

1 The words of 1Nehemiah the son of Hacaliah. Now it happened in 2the month Chislev, 3in the twentieth year, while I was in 4Susa the acapitol,
2 that 5Hanani, one of my brothers, and bsome men from Judah came; and I asked them concerning the Jews who had escaped and had survived the captivity, and about Jerusalem.
3 They said to me, "The remnant there in the 6province who survived the captivity are in great distress and 7reproach, and 8the wall of Jerusalem is broken down and 9its gates are burned with fire."
4 When I heard these words, 10I sat down and wept and mourned for days; and I was fasting and praying before 11the God of heaven.
5 I said, "I beseech You, O LORD God of heaven, 12the great and awesome God, 13who preserves the covenant and lovingkindness for those who love Him and keep His commandments,
6 14let Your ear now be attentive and Your eyes open to hear the prayer of Your servant which I am praying before You now, day and night, on behalf of the sons of Israel Your servants, 15confessing the sins of the sons of Israel which we have sinned against You; 16I and my father's house have sinned.
7 "17We have acted very corruptly against You and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the ordinances 18which You commanded Your servant Moses.
8 "Remember the word which You commanded Your servant Moses, saying, '19If you are unfaithful I will scatter you among the peoples;
9 20but if you return to Me and keep My commandments and do them, though those of you who have been scattered were in the most remote part of the heavens, I 21will gather them from there and will bring them 22to the place where * I have chosen to cause My name to dwell.'
10 "23They are Your servants and Your people whom You redeemed by Your great power and by Your strong hand.
11 "O Lord, I beseech You, 24may Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant and the prayer of Your servants who delight to crevere Your name, and make Your servant successful today and grant him compassion before this man." Now I was the 25cupbearer to the king.
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