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We have overpowered them; 1 Heshbon has perished as far as Dibon. We have shattered them as far as Nophah, which 2 reaches to Medeba.”
Oppressors treat my 1 people cruelly; creditors rule over them. 2 My people’s leaders mislead them; they give you confusing directions. 3
David married more concubines and wives from Jerusalem after he arrived from Hebron. Even more sons and daughters were born to David.
Their houses will be turned over to others as will their fields and their wives. For I will unleash my power 1 against those who live in this land,” says the Lord.
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
The king thereby allowed the Jews who were in every city to assemble and to stand up for themselves – to destroy, to kill, and to annihilate any army of whatever people or province that should become their adversaries, including their women and children, 1 and to confiscate their property.
Now some of the officers of the Judean army and their troops had been hiding in the countryside. They heard that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah son of Ahikam to govern 1 the country. They also heard that he had been put in charge over the men, women, and children from the poorer classes of the land who had not been carried off into exile in Babylon. 2
Old men, young men, young women, little children, and women – wipe them out! But do not touch anyone who has the mark. Begin at my sanctuary!” So they began with the elders who were at the front of the temple.
Letters were sent by the runners to all the king’s provinces stating that 1 they should destroy, kill, and annihilate all the Jews, from youth to elderly, both women and children, 2 on a particular day, namely the thirteenth day 3 of the twelfth month (that is, the month of Adar), and to loot and plunder their possessions.
Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers who were with him led off all the people who had been left alive at Mizpah. They had rescued them from Ishmael son of Nethaniah after he killed Gedaliah son of Ahikam. They led off the men, women, children, soldiers, and court officials whom they had brought away from Gibeon.