Words in italic type have been added for clarity. They are not found in the original Hebrew or Aramaic.
- As Nehemiah, also Daniel (in their prayers)
Nehemiah Prays for His People
Nehemiah 1:1 The words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah.
- Nehemiah (meaning: “God comforts”)
- Hachaliah (meaning: “Who waits for the Lord”)
It came to pass in the month of Chislev (Kislev), the Ninth Jewish Month, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan (Or Susa) the citadel (Or fortified palace, and so elsewhere in the book),
Nehemiah 1:2 that Hanani one of my brethren came with men from Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews who had escaped, who had survived the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem.
- Hanani (meaning: “God is gracious”)
Nehemiah 1:3 And they said to me, “The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province are there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem is also broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.”
Nehemiah 1:4 So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God (‘ĕlōhîm) of heaven.
- “Crying is the only way your eyes speak when your mouth can’t explain” ~unknown
The Prayer of Nehemiah as he Remembers the Covenant
Nehemiah 1:5 And I said: “I pray, Lord God (Yᵊhōvâ ‘ĕlōhîm) of heaven, O great and awesome God (‘ēl), You who keep Your covenant and mercy with those who love You (Lit. Him) and observe Your (Lit. His) commandments,
- Daniel 9:4 And I prayed to the Lord my God, and made confession, and said, “O Lord, great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and with those who keep His commandments,
Nehemiah 1:6 please let Your ear be attentive and Your eyes open, that You may hear the prayer of Your servant which I pray before You now, 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.
- Daniel’s Prayer:
- Daniel 9:5 we have sinned and committed iniquity, we have done wickedly and rebelled, even by departing from Your precepts and Your judgments. 6 Neither have we heeded Your servants the prophets, who spoke in Your name to our kings and our princes, to our fathers and all the people of the land. 7 O Lord, righteousness belongs to You, but to us shame of face, as it is this day—to the men of Judah, to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and all Israel, those near and those far off in all the countries to which You have driven them, because of the unfaithfulness which they have committed against You.
Nehemiah 1:7 We have acted very corruptly against You, and have not kept the commandments, the statutes, nor the ordinances which You commanded Your servant Moses.
- Daniel’s Prayer:
- Daniel 9:10 We have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God, to walk in His laws, which He set before us by His servants the prophets. 11 Yes, all Israel has transgressed Your law, and has departed so as not to obey Your voice; therefore the curse and the oath written in the Law of Moses the servant of God have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against Him.
Nehemiah 1:8 Remember, I pray, the word that You commanded Your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful (act treacherously), I will scatter you among the nations;
- Daniel’s Prayer:
- Daniel 9:13 “As it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come upon us; yet we have not made our prayer before the Lord our God, that we might turn from our iniquities and understand Your truth. 14 Therefore the Lord has kept the disaster in mind, and brought it upon us;