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Nehemiah 1:5

Context
1:5 Then I said, “Please, O LORD God of heaven, great and awesome God, who keeps his loving covenant 1  with those who love him and obey 2  his commandments,

Nehemiah 1:11

Context
1:11 Please, 3  O Lord, listen attentively 4  to the prayer of your servant and to the prayer of your servants who take pleasure in showing respect 5  to your name. Grant your servant success today and show compassion to me 6  in the presence of this man.”

Now 7  I was cupbearer for the king.

1 tn Heb “the covenant and loyal love.” The phrase is a hendiadys: the first noun retains its full nominal sense, while the second noun functions adjectivally (“loyal love” = loving). Alternately, the first might function adjectivally and the second noun function as the noun: “covenant and loyal love” = covenant fidelity (see Neh 9:32).

2 tn Heb “keep.” The Hebrew verb שָׁמַר (shamar, “to observe; to keep”) is often used as an idiom that means “to obey” the commandments of God (e.g., Exod 20:6; Deut 5:16; 23:24; 29:8; Judg 2:22; 1 Kgs 2:43; 11:11; Ps 119:8, 17, 34; Jer 35:18; Ezek 17:14; Amos 2:4). See BDB 1036 s.v. 3.c.

3 tn The interjection אָנָּא (’anna’) is an emphatic term of entreaty: “please!” (BDB 58 s.v.; HALOT 69-70 s.v.). This term is normally reserved for pleas for mercy from God in life-and-death situations (2 Kgs 20:3 = Isa 38:3; Pss 116:4; 118:25; Jonah 1:14; 4:2) and for forgiveness of heinous sins that would result or have resulted in severe judgment from God (Exod 32:31; Dan 9:4; Neh 1:5, 11).

4 tn Heb “let your ear be attentive.”

5 tn Heb “fear.”

6 tn Heb “grant compassion.” The words “to me” are supplied in the translation for the sake of smoothness and style in English.

7 tn The vav (ו) on וַאֲנִי (vaani, “Now, I”) introduces a disjunctive parenthetical clause that provides background information to the reader.



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