1The words of Neḥemyah son of Ḥaḵalyah. And it came to be in the new moon of Kislĕw, in the twentieth year, as I was in the citadel of Shushan,
2that Ḥanani, one of my brothers, came with men from Yehuḏah. And I asked them concerning the Yehuḏim who had escaped, who had survived the captivity, and concerning Yerushalayim.
3And they said to me, “The remnant who are left of the captivity in the province are there in great evil and reproach. And the wall of Yerushalayim is broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.”
4And it came to be, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days. And I was fasting and praying before the Elohim of the heavens,
5and I said, “I pray, יהוה Elohim of the heavens, O great and awesome Ěl, guarding the covenant and loving-commitment with those who love You, and with those guarding Your commands,
6please let Your ear be attentive and Your eyes open, to hear the prayer of Your servant which I am praying before You now, day and night, for the children of Yisra’ĕl Your servants, and confess the sins of the children of Yisra’ĕl which we have sinned against You. Both my father’s house and I have sinned.
7“We have acted very corruptly against You, and have not guarded the commands, nor the laws, nor the right-rulings which You commanded Your servant Mosheh.
8“Please remember the word that You commanded Your servant Mosheh, saying, ‘If you trespass, I shall scatter you among the peoples,
9but if you shall turn back to Me, and guard My commands and do them, though you were cast out to the end of the heavens, I shall gather them from there, and bring them to the place which I have chosen, to make My Name dwell there.’
10“And they are Your servants and Your people, whom You have ransomed by Your great power, and by Your strong hand.
11“O יהוה, I pray, please let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who delight to fear Your Name. And let Your servant prosper this day, I pray, and grant him compassion in the presence of this man.” For I was cupbearer to the sovereign.