The Prayer of Ezra
Ezra 9 : 5-15
5 At the evening sacrifice I arose from my fasting; and having torn my garment and
my robe, I fell on my knees and spread out my hands to the LORD my God. 6 And I
said: “O my God, I am too ashamed and humiliated to lift up my face to You, my
God; for our iniquities have risen higher than our heads, and our guilt has grown up
to the heavens. 7 Since the days of our fathers to this day we have been very guilty,
and for our iniquities we, our kings, and our priests have been delivered into the
hand of the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity, to plunder, and to
humiliation, as it is this day. 8 And now for a little while grace has been shown from
the LORD our God, to leave us a remnant to escape, and to give us a peg in His holy
place, that our God may enlighten our eyes and give us a measure of revival in our
bondage. 9 For we were slaves. Yet our God did not forsake us in our bondage; but
He extended mercy to us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to revive us, to repair
the house of our God, to rebuild its ruins, and to give us a wall in Judah and
Jerusalem. 10 And now, O our God, what shall we say after this? For we have
forsaken Your commandments, 11 which You commanded by Your servants the
prophets, saying, ‘The land which you are entering to possess is an unclean land,
with the uncleanness of the peoples of the lands, with their abominations which have
filled it from one end to another with their impurity. 12 Now therefore, do not give
your daughters as wives for their sons, nor take their daughters to your sons; and
never seek their peace or prosperity, that you may be strong and eat the good of the
land, and leave it as an inheritance to your children forever.’ 13 And after all that has
come upon us for our evil deeds and for our great guilt, since You our God have
punished us less than our iniquities deserve, and have given us such deliverance as
this, 14 should we again break Your commandments, and join in marriage with the
people committing these abominations? Would You not be angry with us until You
had consumed us, so that there would be no remnant or survivor? 15 O LORD God of
Israel, You are righteous, for we are left as a remnant, as it is this day. Here we are
before You, in our guilt, though no one can stand before You because of this!”