Nehemiah 1–3

1 The words of Nehemiah the son of Hakaliah.

In the month Kislev, in the twentieth year, while I was in Susa the palace, 2 Hanani, one of my relatives, and some men of Judah arrived. So I asked them concerning the returning Jews who had been in captivity, and concerning Jerusalem.

3 They said to me, “The remnant that returned from captivity is there in the province enduring great affliction and reproach. Also, the wall of Jerusalem remains broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire.”

4 When I heard these words, I sat down and wept and mourned for days. Then I fasted, and prayed before the God of heaven, 5 and said:

“I beseech You, O Lord God of heaven, the great and awesome God, who keeps covenant and mercy for those who love Him and keep His commandments. 6 Let Your ear now be attentive, and Your eyes open, that You may hear the prayer of Your servant, which I now pray before You, day and night, for the children of Israel Your servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel, which we have sinned against You. Both my father’s house and I have sinned. 7 We have acted very corruptly against You and have not obeyed the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the judgments, which You commanded Your servant Moses.

8 “Please remember the word that You commanded Your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you behave unfaithfully, then I will scatter you among the nations, 9 but if you return to Me and keep My commandments and do them, though your outcasts are under the farthest part of the heavens, I will gather them from there and bring them back to the place where I have chosen to establish My name.’

10 “Now these are Your servants and Your people, whom You have redeemed by Your great power and by Your strong hand. 11 O Lord, I implore You, let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who delight to revere Your name. And let Your servant prosper this day, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man.”

For I was the king’s cupbearer.

Chapter 2

1 In the month of Nisan, during the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when wine was before him, I took the wine and gave it to the king. Never had I been upset in his presence. 2 So the king said to me, “Why is your face troubled though you do not seem sick? This is nothing but a troubled heart.”

Then I became very much afraid 3 and said to the king, “May the king live forever! Why should not my face be troubled when the city, the place of my fathers’ tombs, lies waste, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?”

4 So the king said to me, “What are you requesting about this matter?”

Immediately, I prayed to the God of heaven 5 and then said to the king, “If this pleases the king and if this might be good for your servant who is before you, then would you send me to Judah, to the city of my fathers’ tombs so that I may rebuild it?”

6 The king, with the queen sitting beside him, said to me, “How long would your journey be? And when will you return?” Because it pleased the king to send me, I established a timetable for him.

7 I further said to the king, “If this pleases the king, may letters be given to me for the governors of the province Beyond the River so that they would allow me to pass through until I come to Judah, 8 as well as a letter to Asaph the keeper of the king’s forest, that he may give me timber to make beams for the gates of the temple mount, for the city wall, and for the house into which I will enter.” The king granted me these things, because the good hand of my God was upon me. 9 When I came to the governors of the province Beyond the River, I gave them the king’s letters. He also sent with me commanders of foot and horse soldiers.

10 When Sanballat the Horonite and Tobiah the Ammonite subordinate heard this, it deeply grieved them that there was a man coming to seek the welfare of the children of Israel.

11 When I arrived in Jerusalem, I was there three days. 12 Then I arose in the night, I and a few men who were with me; I told no one what my God had put in my heart to do for Jerusalem. There was no animal with me, except the one on which I rode.

13 So I went out by night by the Valley Gate toward the Dragon’s Well and then to the Dung Gate, because I was inspecting the broken-down walls of Jerusalem and its burned gates. 14 Next I passed by the Fountain Gate and then to the King’s Pool, but there was no place for my mount to pass. 15 By going up along the riverbed at night, I inspected the wall. Then I turned back so that I could enter by the Valley Gate, and then came back again. 16 The officials did not know where I went or what I did, since I had not yet told it to the Jews, the priests, the nobles, the officials, or to any of the others who would do the work.

17 Finally, I said to them, “You see the distress that we are in, how Jerusalem is devastated and its gates are burned with fire. Come, and let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem so that we will no more be a reproach.” 18 Then I told them that the hand of my God had been good to me and also about the king’s words that he had spoken to me.

And they said, “Let us rise up and build!” So they strengthened their hands for the good work.

19 But when Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiah the Ammonite subordinate, and Geshem the Arabian heard it, they laughed us to scorn, and despised us, and said, “What is this thing that you are doing? Are you rebelling against the king?”

20 Then answered I them and said to them, “The God of heaven, He will enable us to prosper. Therefore we His servants will arise and build, but you will have no portion, or right, or memorial in Jerusalem.”

Chapter 3

1 Then Eliashib the high priest rose up with his brothers the priests, and they built the Sheep Gate. They sanctified it and erected its doors. From the Tower of the Hundred to the Tower of Hananel, they sanctified the wall. 2 Next to him the men of Jericho built, and next to them Zakkur the son of Imri built.

3 The sons of Hassenaah built the Fish Gate, constructing its beams, erecting its doors, and installing locks and bars for it. 4 Next to them Meremoth the son of Uriah, the son of Hakkoz made repairs. Next to him, Meshullam the son of Berekiah, the son of Meshezabel made repairs. Next to him Zadok the son of Baana made repairs. 5 Next to them the Tekoites made repairs, but their noblemen would not put their shoulders to the work of their Lord.

6 Joiada the son of Paseah and Meshullam the son of Besodeiah repaired the Old Gate. They constructed its beams, erected its doors, and installed locks and bars for it. 7 Next to them repairs were made by Melatiah the Gibeonite and Jadon the Meronothite, the men of Gibeon and of Mizpah, places under the authority of the governor of the province Beyond the River. 8 Next to them Uzziel the son of Harhaiah, one of the goldsmiths, made repairs. Next to him Hananiah, the son of one of the apothecaries, made repairs, and they repaired Jerusalem as far as the Broad Wall. 9 Next to him Rephaiah the son of Hur, commander of half of the Jerusalem district, made repairs. 10 Next to him Jedaiah the son of Harumaph made repairs across from his house. Next to him Hattush the son of Hashabneiah made repairs. 11 Malkijah the son of Harim and Hasshub the son of Pahath-Moab repaired another section, as well as the Tower of the Furnaces. 12 Next to them Shallum the son of Hallohesh, commander of the other half of the Jerusalem district, made repairs along with his daughters.

13 Hanun and the inhabitants of Zanoah repaired the Valley Gate. They rebuilt it, erected its doors, and installed locks and bars for it, plus repaired one thousand cubits along on the wall to the Dung Gate.

14 But the Dung Gate was repaired by Malkijah the son of Rekab, commander of the Beth Hakkerem district. He rebuilt it, and erected its doors, and installed the locks and bars for it.

15 Moreover, Shallun the son of Kol-Hozeh, commander of the Mizpah district, made repairs to the Fountain Gate. He rebuilt it, covered it, erected its doors, and installed the locks and bars for it. He also repaired the wall of the pool of Shelah by the king’s garden as far as the steps going down from the City of David. 16 After him Nehemiah the son of Azbuk, commander of half of the Beth Zur district, made repairs as far as the area across from the Tomb of David plus to the constructed pool and to the house of the mighty.

17 After him the Levites, under Rehum the son of Bani, made repairs. Next to them Hashabiah, commander of half of the Keilah district, made repairs in his area. 18 After him their brothers, under Binnui the son of Henadad, commander of the other half of the Keilah district, made repairs. 19 Next to them Ezer the son of Jeshua, commander of Mizpah, made repairs to another section across from the ascent to the armory at the corner. 20 After him Baruch the son of Zabbai zealously repaired another section, from the corner to the door of the house of Eliashib the high priest. 21 After him Meremoth the son of Uriah the son of Hakkoz repaired another section from the door of the house of Eliashib to the end of it.

22 After him the priests, the men of the surrounding plain, made repairs. 23 After them Benjamin and Hasshub made repairs across from their house. After them Azariah the son of Maaseiah the son of Ananiah made repairs beside his house. 24 After him Binnui the son of Henadad repaired another section from the house of Azariah as far as the corner plus the corner tower. 25 Palal the son of Uzai made repairs across from the corner and to the tower protruding out of the king’s upper house next to the courtyard of the guards. After him Pedaiah the son of Parosh made repairs. 26 The temple servants living in Ophel made repairs from opposite the Water Gate eastward to the protruding tower. 27 After them the Tekoites repaired another section across from the great protruding tower as far as the wall of Ophel.

28 Up to the Horse Gate the priests made repairs—each one across from his house. 29 After them Zadok the son of Immer repaired across from his house. After him Shemaiah the son of Shekaniah, who was keeper of the East Gate, made repairs. 30 After him Hananiah the son of Shelemiah and Hanun the sixth son of Zalaph repaired another section. After them Meshullam the son of Berekiah made repairs across from his chamber. 31 After him Malkijah the goldsmith’s son made repairs as far as the house of the temple servants and the merchants. This was across from the Mustering Gate extending as far as the upper room of the corner tower. 32 Between the upper room of the corner tower and the Sheep Gate, the goldsmiths and the merchants made repairs.

Acts 2:1–21

1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like a mighty rushing wind came from heaven, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 There appeared to them tongues as of fire, being distributed and resting on each of them, 4 and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to speak.

5 Now dwelling in Jerusalem were Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven. 6 When this sound occurred, the crowd came together and were confounded, because each man heard them speaking in his own language. 7 They were all amazed and marveled, saying to each other, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 How is it that we hear, each in our own native language? 9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites, residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the regions of Libya near Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11 Cretans and Arabs—we hear them speaking in our own languages the mighty works of God.” 12 They were all amazed and perplexed, saying to each other, “What does this mean?”

13 Others mocking said, “These men are full of new wine.”

14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all you who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to my words. 15 For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is the third hour of the day. 16 But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:

17 ‘In the last days it shall be,’ says God,

‘that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh;

your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,

your young men shall see visions,

and your old men shall dream dreams.

18 Even on My menservants and maidservants

I will pour out My Spirit in those days;

and they shall prophesy.

19 And I will show wonders in heaven above

and signs on the earth below:

blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke.

20 The sun shall be turned into darkness,

and the moon into blood,

before that great and glorious day of the Lord comes.

21 And whoever calls

on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’”