Nehemiah 2
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1And it comes to pass, in the month of Nisan, the twentieth year of Artaxerxes the king, wine [is] before him, and I lift up the wine, and give to the king, and I had not been sad before him; 2and the king says to me, “Why [is] your face sad, and you not sick? This is nothing except sadness of heart”; and I fear very much, 3and say to the king, “Let the king live for all time! Why should my face not be sad, when the city, the place of the graves of my fathers, [is] a desolation, and its gates have been consumed with fire?” 4And the king says to me, “For what are you seeking?” And I pray to the God of the heavens, 5and say to the king, “If [it is] good to the king, and if your servant is pleasing before you, that you send me to Judah, to the city of the graves of my fathers, and I have built it.” 6And the king says to me (and the queen is sitting near him), “How long is your journey? And when do you return?” And it is good before the king, and he sends me away, and I set to him a time. 7And I say to the king, “If [it is] good to the king, let letters be given to me for the governors beyond the River, that they let me pass over until I come to Judah: 8and a letter to Asaph, keeper of the paradise that the king has, that he give to me trees for beams [for] the gates of the palace that the house has, and for the wall of the city, and for the house into which I enter”; and the king gives to me, according to the good hand of my God on me.

9And I come to the governors beyond the River, and give to them the letters of the king; and the king sends with me heads of a force, and horsemen; 10and Sanballat the Horonite hears, and Tobiah the servant, the Ammonite, and it is evil to them—a great evil—that a man has come to seek good for the sons of Israel.

11And I come to Jerusalem, and I am there three days, 12and I rise by night, I and a few men with me, and have not declared to a man what my God is giving to my heart to do for Jerusalem, and there is no beast with me except the beast on which I am riding. 13And I go out through the Valley Gate by night, and to the front of the Dragon Fountain, and to the Refuse Gate, and I am inspecting the walls of Jerusalem, that are broken down, and its gates consumed with fire. 14And I pass over to the Fountain Gate, and to the King’s Pool, and there is no place for the beast under me to pass over, 15and I am going up through the brook by night, and am inspecting the wall, and turn back, and come in through the Valley Gate, and turn back. 16And the prefects have not known to where I have gone, and what I am doing; and to the Jews, and to the priests, and to the nobles, and to the prefects, and to the rest of those doing the work, until now I have not declared [it];

17and I say to them, “You are seeing the evil that we are in, in that Jerusalem [is] desolate, and its gates have been burned with fire; come and we build the wall of Jerusalem, and we are not a reproach anymore.” 18And I declare to them the hand of my God that is good on me, and also the words of the king that he said to me, and they say, “Let us rise, and we have built”; and they strengthen their hands for good. 19And Sanballat the Horonite hears, and Tobiah the servant, the Ammonite, and Geshem the Arabian, and they mock at us, and despise us, and say, “What [is] this thing that you are doing? Are you rebelling against the king?” 20And I return them word, and say to them, “The God of the heavens—He gives prosperity to us, and we His servants rise and have built; and to you there is no portion, and right, and memorial in Jerusalem.”

Literal Standard Version
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Nehemiah 1
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