I 1 said to them, “The gates of Jerusalem must not be opened in the early morning, 2 until those who are standing guard close the doors and lock them. 3 Position residents of Jerusalem as guards, some at their guard stations and some near their homes.”
Harbona, 1 one of the king’s eunuchs, said, “Indeed, there is the gallows that Haman made for Mordecai, who spoke out in the king’s behalf. It stands near Haman’s home and is seventy-five feet 2 high.” The king said, “Hang him on it!”
Nations will take them and bring them back to their own place. Then the family of Jacob will make foreigners their servants as they settle in the Lord’s land. 1 They will make their captors captives and rule over the ones who oppressed them.
Kings will be your children’s 1 guardians; their princesses will nurse your children. 2 With their faces to the ground they will bow down to you and they will lick the dirt on 3 your feet. Then you will recognize that I am the Lord; those who wait patiently for me are not put to shame.
They lament, 1 ‘Why don’t you notice when we fast? Why don’t you pay attention when we humble ourselves?’ Look, at the same time you fast, you satisfy your selfish desires, 2 you oppress your workers. 3
take note, I have stretched out my hand against you, and I will hand you over as plunder 1 to the nations. I will cut you off from the peoples and make you perish from the lands. I will destroy you; then you will know that I am the Lord.’”
On both sides of the river’s banks, every kind of tree will grow for food. Their leaves will not wither nor will their fruit fail, but they will bear fruit every month, because their water source flows from the sanctuary. Their fruit will be for food and their leaves for healing.” 1
Get dressed 1 and lament, you priests! Wail, you who minister at the altar! Come, spend the night in sackcloth, you servants of my God, because no one brings grain offerings or drink offerings to the temple of your God anymore. 2
Let the priests, those who serve the Lord, weep from the vestibule all the way back to the altar. 1 Let them say, “Have pity, O Lord, on your people; please do not turn over your inheritance to be mocked, to become a proverb 2 among the nations. Why should it be said 3 among the peoples, “Where is their God?”
You also say, ‘How tiresome it is.’ You turn up your nose at it,” says the Lord who rules over all, “and instead bring what is stolen, lame, or sick. You bring these things for an offering! Should I accept this from you?” 1 asks the Lord.
He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. He 1 gave them to his 2 disciples to serve the people, and he divided the two fish among them all.
These men are 1 dangerous reefs 2 at your love feasts, 3 feasting without reverence, 4 feeding only themselves. 5 They are 6 waterless 7 clouds, carried along by the winds; autumn trees without fruit 8 – twice dead, 9 uprooted;
Now, O Lord, God of Israel, keep the promise you made to your servant, my father David, when you said, ‘You will never fail to have a successor ruling before me on the throne of Israel, 1 provided that your descendants watch their step and serve me as you have done.’ 2
You must 1 observe the Sabbath 2 rather than doing anything you please on my holy day. 3 You must look forward to the Sabbath 4 and treat the Lord’s holy day with respect. 5 You must treat it with respect by refraining from your normal activities, and by refraining from your selfish pursuits and from making business deals. 6
The one who slaughters a bull also strikes down a man; 1 the one who sacrifices a lamb also breaks a dog’s neck; 2 the one who presents an offering includes pig’s blood with it; 3 the one who offers incense also praises an idol. 4 They have decided to behave this way; 5 they enjoy these disgusting practices. 6