Fasting and Prayer for Protection

21 (A)Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river (B)Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God, (C)to seek from him a safe journey for ourselves, our children, and all our goods. 22 For I was ashamed to ask the king for a band of soldiers and horsemen to protect us against the enemy on our way, since we had told the king, (D)“The hand of our God is for good on (E)all who seek him, and the power of his wrath is against all who forsake him.” 23 So we fasted and implored our God for this, and he listened to our entreaty.

Priests to Guard Offerings

24 Then I set apart twelve of the leading priests: (F)Sherebiah, (G)Hashabiah, and ten of their kinsmen with them. 25 And I weighed out to them the (H)silver and the gold and the vessels, the offering for the house of our God that the king and his (I)counselors and his lords and all Israel there present had offered. 26 (J)I weighed out into their hand 650 talents[a] of silver, and silver vessels worth 200 talents,[b] and 100 talents of gold, 27 20 bowls of gold worth 1,000 darics,[c] and two vessels of fine bright bronze as precious as gold. 28 And I said to them, (K)“You are holy to the Lord, and (L)the vessels are holy, and the silver and the gold are a freewill offering to the Lord, the God of your fathers. 29 Guard them and keep them until you weigh them before the chief priests and the Levites and the heads of fathers' houses in Israel at Jerusalem, (M)within the chambers of the house of the Lord.” 30 So the priests and the Levites (N)took over the weight of the silver and the gold and the vessels, to bring them to Jerusalem, to the house of our God.

31 Then we departed from the river Ahava (O)on the twelfth day of the first month, to go to Jerusalem. (P)The hand of our God was on us, and he delivered us from the hand of the enemy and from ambushes by the way. 32 (Q)We came to Jerusalem, and there we remained three days. 33 On the fourth day, within the house of our God, the silver and the gold and the vessels were (R)weighed into the hands of (S)Meremoth the priest, son of Uriah, and with him was Eleazar the son of Phinehas, and with them were the Levites, (T)Jozabad the son of Jeshua and Noadiah the son of (U)Binnui. 34 The whole was counted and weighed, and the weight of everything was recorded.

35 At that time (V)those who had come from captivity, the returned exiles, offered burnt offerings to the God of Israel, (W)twelve bulls for all Israel, ninety-six rams, seventy-seven lambs, and as a sin offering twelve male goats. All this was a burnt offering to the Lord. 36 (X)They also delivered the king's commissions to the king's (Y)satraps[d] and to the governors of the province Beyond the River, and they aided the people and the house of God.

Ezra Prays About Intermarriage

After these things had been done, the officials approached me and said, “The people of Israel and the priests and the (Z)Levites have not separated themselves from the peoples of the lands (AA)with their abominations, from the (AB)Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites. (AC)For they have taken some of their daughters to be wives for themselves and for their sons, so that the (AD)holy race[e] has (AE)mixed itself with the peoples of the lands. And in this faithlessness the hand of the officials and chief men has been foremost.” As soon as I heard this, I (AF)tore my garment and my cloak and pulled hair from my head and beard and (AG)sat appalled. Then all who (AH)trembled at the words of the God of Israel, because of the faithlessness of the returned exiles, gathered around me while I sat (AI)appalled until the evening sacrifice. And at the (AJ)evening sacrifice I rose from my fasting, with my garment (AK)and my cloak torn, and fell upon my knees (AL)and spread out my hands to the Lord my God, saying:

“O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift my face to you, my God, for our iniquities (AM)have risen higher than our heads, and our (AN)guilt has (AO)mounted up to the heavens. (AP)From the days of our fathers to this day we have been in great (AQ)guilt. And for 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, to plundering, (AR)and to utter shame, as it is today. But now for a brief moment favor has been shown by the Lord our God, to leave us a (AS)remnant and to give us a (AT)secure hold[f] within his holy place, that our God may (AU)brighten our eyes and grant us a little reviving in our slavery. (AV)For we are slaves. Yet our God has not forsaken us in our slavery, (AW)but has extended to us his steadfast love before the kings of Persia, to grant us some reviving to set up the house of our God, to repair its ruins, and to give us protection[g] in Judea and Jerusalem.

10 “And now, O our God, what shall we say after this? For we have forsaken your commandments, 11 which you commanded by your servants the prophets, saying, ‘The land that you are entering, to take possession of it, is a land impure with the impurity of the peoples of the lands, with their abominations that have filled it from end to end with (AX)their uncleanness. 12 (AY)Therefore do not give your daughters to their sons, neither take their daughters for your sons, and never seek their peace or prosperity, that you may be strong and eat the good of the land (AZ)and leave it for an inheritance to your children forever.’ 13 And after all that has come upon us for our evil deeds and for (BA)our great guilt, seeing that you, our (BB)God, have punished us less than our iniquities deserved and have given us such a (BC)remnant as this, 14 shall we break your commandments again and (BD)intermarry with the peoples who practice these abominations? Would you not be angry with us (BE)until you consumed us, so that there should be no (BF)remnant, nor any to escape? 15 O Lord, the God of Israel, you are just, for we are left a (BG)remnant that has escaped, as it is today. Behold, we are before you in our (BH)guilt, (BI)for none can stand before you because of this.”


  1. Ezra 8:26 A talent was about 75 pounds or 34 kilograms
  2. Ezra 8:26 Revocalization; the number is missing in the Masoretic Text
  3. Ezra 8:27 A daric was a coin weighing about 1/4 ounce or 8.5 grams
  4. Ezra 8:36 A satrap was a Persian official
  5. Ezra 9:2 Hebrew offspring
  6. Ezra 9:8 Hebrew nail, or tent-pin
  7. Ezra 9:9 Hebrew a wall

Sexual Immorality Defiles the Church

It is actually reported that there is (A)sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, (B)for a man has his father's wife. And (C)you are arrogant! Ought you (D)not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.

For though (E)absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing. When you are assembled (F)in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, you are (G)to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so (H)that his spirit may be saved (I)in the day of the Lord.[a]

(J)Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that (K)a little leaven leavens the whole lump? Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. Let us therefore celebrate the festival, (L)not with the old leaven, (M)the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

I wrote to you in my letter (N)not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 (O)not at all meaning (P)the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, (Q)since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone (R)who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging (S)outsiders? (T)Is it not those inside the church[b] whom you are to judge? 13 God judges[c] those outside. (U)“Purge the evil person from among you.”

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  1. 1 Corinthians 5:5 Some manuscripts add Jesus
  2. 1 Corinthians 5:12 Greek those inside
  3. 1 Corinthians 5:13 Or will judge

Into Your Hand I Commit My Spirit

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.

31 (A)In you, O Lord, do I (B)take refuge;
    (C)let me never be put to shame;
    in your (D)righteousness deliver me!
Incline your ear to me;
    rescue me speedily!
Be (E)a rock of (F)refuge for me,
    a strong fortress to save me!

For you are my rock and my fortress;
    and for your (G)name's sake you lead me and guide me;
you (H)take me out of (I)the net they have hidden for me,
    for you are my (J)refuge.
(K)Into your hand I commit my spirit;
    you have redeemed me, O Lord, (L)faithful God.

I (M)hate[a] those who pay (N)regard to worthless (O)idols,
    but I trust in the Lord.
I will rejoice and be glad in your steadfast love,
    because you have seen my affliction;
    you have (P)known the distress of my soul,
and you have not (Q)delivered me into the hand of the enemy;
    you have set my feet in (R)a broad place.

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  1. Psalm 31:6 Masoretic Text; one Hebrew manuscript, Septuagint, Syriac, Jerome You hate

21 The king's heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord;
    he (A)turns it wherever he will.
(B)Every way of a man is right in his own eyes,
    but the Lord (C)weighs the heart.

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