Nehemiah Chapter 1 |
1The narrative of Nehemiah son of Hacaliah:
In the month of Kislev of the twentieth year, when I was in the fortress of Shushan, 2Hanani, one of my brothers, together with some men of Judah, arrived, and I asked them about the Jews, the remnant who had survived the captivity, and about Jerusalem. 3They replied, “The survivors who have survived the captivity there in the province are in dire trouble and disgrace; Jerusalem’s wall is full of breaches, and its gates have been destroyed by fire.”
4When I heard that, I sat and wept, and was in mourning for days, fasting and praying to the God of Heaven.
5I said, “O Lord, God of Heaven, great and awesome God, who stays faithful to His covenant with those who love Him and keep His commandments!
6Let Your ear be attentive and Your eyes open to receive the prayer of Your servant that I am praying to You now, day and night, on behalf of the Israelites, Your servants, confessing the sins that we Israelites have committed against You, sins that I and my father’s house have committed.
7We have offended You by not keeping the commandments, the laws, and the rules that You gave to Your servant Moses.
8Be mindful of the promise You gave to Your servant Moses: ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the peoples;
9but if you turn back to Me, faithfully keep My commandments, even if your dispersed are at the ends of the earth, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place where I have chosen to establish My name.’
10For they are Your servants and Your people whom You redeemed by Your great power and Your mighty hand.
11O Lord! Let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who desire to hold Your name in awe. Grant Your servant success today, and dispose that man to be compassionate toward him!”
I was the king’s cupbearer at the time.