1 So when Esdras had prayed, and when he had confessed, weeping and praying before the house of God, a very great assembly of Israel came together to him, men and women and youths; for the people wept, and wept aloud. 2 And Sechenias the son of Jeel, of the sons of Elam, answered and said to Esdras, We have broken covenant with our God, and have 1taken strange wives of the nations of the land: yet now there is patience of hope to Israel concerning this thing. 3 Now then let us make a covenant with our God, to put away all the wives, and their offspring, as thou shalt advise: 4 arise, and alarm them with the commands of our God; and let it be done 2according to the law. Rise up, for the matter is upon thee; and we are with thee: be strong and do.
5 Then Esdras arose, and caused the rulers, the priests, and Levites, and all Israel, to swear that they would do according to this word: and they swore. 6 And Esdras rose up from before the house of God, and went to the treasury of Joanan the son of Elisub; he even went thither: he ate no bread, and drank no water; for he mourned over the 3unfaithfulness of them of the captivity. 7 And they made proclamation throughout Juda and Jerusalem to all the children of the captivity, that they should assemble at Jerusalem, saying, 8 Every one who shall not arrive within three days, as is the counsel of the rulers and the elders, all his substance shall be 4forfeited, and he shall be separated from the congregation of the captivity.
9 So all the men of Juda and Benjamin assembled at Jerusalem within the three days. This was the ninth month: on the twentieth day of the month all the people sat down in the street of the house of the Lord, because of their alarm concerning the word, and because of the storm. 10 And Esdras the priest arose, and said to them, Ye have broken covenant, and have 5taken strange wives, to add to the trespass of Israel. 11 Now therefore give praise to the Lord God of our fathers, and do that which is pleasing in his sight: and separate yourselves from the peoples of the land, and from the strange wives.
12 Then all the congregation answered and said, This thy word is powerful upon us to do it. 13 But the people is numerous, and the season is stormy, and there is no power to stand without, and the work is more than enough for one day or for two; for we have greatly sinned in this matter. 14 Let now our rulers stand, and for all those in our cities who have taken strange wives, let them come at appointed times, and with them elders from every several city, and judges, to turn away the fierce wrath of our God from us concerning this matter. 15 Only Jonathan the son of Asael, and Jazias the son of Thecoe were with me concerning this; and Mesollam, and Sabbathai the Levite helped them.
16 And the children of the captivity did thus: and Esdras the priest, and heads of families according to their house were separated, and all by their names, for they returned in the first day of the tenth month to search out the matter. 17 And they made an end with all the men who had taken strange wives by the first day of the first month.
18 And there were found some of the sons of the priests who had taken strange wives: of the sons of Jesus the son of Josedec, and his brethren; Maasia, and Eliezer, and Jarib, and Gadalia. 19 And they 6pledged themselves to 7put away their wives, and offered a ram of the 8flock for a trespass-offering because of their trespass. 20 And of the sons of Emmer; Anani, and Zabdia. 21 And of the sons of Eram; Masael, and Elia, and Samaia, and Jeel, and Ozia. 22 And of the sons of Phasur; Elionai, Maasia, and Ismael, and Nathanael, and Jozabad, and
44 All these had taken strange wives, and had begotten sons of them.
1 Gr. settled, or caused to dwell.
2 Gr. as the law is.
3 Gr. covenant-breaking.
4 Gr. accursed.
5 Gr. settled.
6 Gr. gave their hand.
7 Gr. bring forth.
8 Gr. sheep.
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