Ezra 9 ©

Ezra is informed that the people had grievously offended in making mixed marriages with the heathen, v. 1. For which he mourns exceedingly, and makes a mournful and fervent prayer unto God in public, 3, etc.


NOW when these things were done, the princes came to me, saying, The people of Israel, and the priests, and the Levites, have not separated themselves from the 1people of the lands, doing according to their abominations, even of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites.


For they have taken of their daughters for themselves, and for their sons: so that the 2holy seed have mingled themselves with the people of those lands: yea, the hand of the princes and 3rulers hath been 4chief in this trespass.


And when I heard this thing, I 5rent my garment and my mantle, and 6plucked off the hair of my head and of my beard, and sat down 7astonied.


Then were assembled unto me every one 8that trembled at the words of the God of Israel, because of the transgression of those 9that had been carried away; and I sat astonied until the 10evening sacrifice.


¶And at the evening sacrifice I arose up from my heaviness; and having rent my garment and my mantle, I fell upon my knees, and spread out my hands unto the LORD my God,


And said, O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift up my face to thee, my God: for our iniquities are increaseda over our head, and our trespass is grown up 11unto the heavens.


Since the days of our fathers have we been in a great trespass unto this day; and for our iniquities have we, our kings, and our priests, been delivered into the hand of the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity, and to a spoil, and to confusion of face, as it is this day.


And now for a little space grace hath been shewed from the LORD our God, to leave us a 12remnant to escape, and to give us a 13nail in his 14holy place, that our God may lighten our 15eyes, and give us a little 16reviving in our bondage.


For we were bondmen; yet our God hath not forsaken us in our bondage, but hath 17extended mercy unto us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to give us a reviving, to set up the house of our God, and to repair the 18desolations thereof, and to give us a 19wall in Judah and in Jerusalem.


And now, O our God, what shall we say after this? for we have forsaken thy commandments,


Which thou hast commanded by thy 20servants the prophets, saying, Theb land, unto which ye go to possess it, is an 21unclean land with the filthiness of the people of the lands, with their abominations, which have filled it 22from one end to another with their uncleanness.


Now therefore give not your daughters unto their sons, neither take their daughters unto your sons, nor seek their 23peace or their 24wealth for ever: that ye may be strong, and eat the good of the land, and leave it for an inheritance to your children 25for ever.


And after all that is come upon us for our evil deeds, and for our great trespass, seeing that thou our God hast punished us less 26than our iniquities deserve, and hast given us such deliverance as this;


Should we again break thy commandments, and join in affinityc with the people of these abominations? wouldest not thou be angry with us till thou hadst consumed us, so that there should be no remnant nor escaping?


O LORD God of Israel, thou art 27righteous: for we remain yet escaped, as it is this day: behold, we are before thee in our trespasses: for we cannot stand before thee 28because of this.