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Ezra 10:1-5

The People Confess Their Sins

10:1 While Ezra was praying and confessing, weeping and throwing himself to the ground before the temple of God, a very large crowd of Israelites – men, women, and children alike – gathered around him. The people wept loudly. 1  10:2 Then Shecaniah son of Jehiel, from the descendants of Elam, 2  addressed Ezra:

“We have been unfaithful to our God by marrying 3  foreign women from the local peoples. 4  Nonetheless, there is still hope for Israel in this regard. 5  10:3 Therefore let us enact 6  a covenant with our God to send away all these women and their offspring, in keeping with your counsel, my lord, 7  and that of those who respect 8  the commandments of our God. And let it be done according to the law. 10:4 Get up, for this matter concerns you. We are with you, so be strong and act decisively!”

10:5 So Ezra got up and made the leading priests and Levites and all Israel take an oath to carry out this plan. 9  And they all took a solemn oath.

1 tn Heb “with much weeping.”

2 tc The translation reads with the Qere, many medieval Hebrew MSS, the LXX, the Syriac Peshitta, and Vulgate עֵילָם (’elam, “Elam”) rather than the reading עוֹלָם (’olam, “eternity”) found in the MT.

3 tn Heb “in that we have given a dwelling to.” So also in vv. 14, 17, 18.

4 tn Heb “the peoples of the lands.”

5 tn Heb “upon this.”

6 tn Heb “cut.”

7 tn The MT vocalizes this word as a plural, which could be understood as a reference to God. But the context seems to suggest that a human lord is intended. The apparatus of BHS suggests repointing the word as a singular (“my lord”), but this is unnecessary. The plural (“my lords”) can be understood in an honorific sense even when a human being is in view. Most English versions regard this as a reference to Ezra, so the present translation supplies “your” before “counsel” to make this clear.

8 tn Heb “who tremble at”; NAB, NIV “who fear.”

9 tn Heb “to do according to this plan.”

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