1 While Ezra was praying and making confession, weeping and prostrating himself before the House of Hashem, a very great crowd of Israelites gathered about him, men, women, and children; the people were weeping bitterly.
א וּכְהִתְפַּלֵּל עֶזְרָא וּכְהִתְוַדֹּתוֹ בֹּכֶה וּמִתְנַפֵּל לִפְנֵי בֵּית הָאֱלֹהִים נִקְבְּצוּ אֵלָיו מִיִּשְׂרָאֵל קָהָל רַב־מְאֹד אֲנָשִׁים וְנָשִׁים וִילָדִים כִּי־בָכוּ הָעָם הַרְבֵּה־בֶכֶה׃
2 Then Shechanya son of Yechiel of the family of Elam spoke up and said to Ezra, “We have trespassed against our God by bringing into our homes foreign women from the peoples of the land; but there is still hope for Yisrael despite this.
3 Now then, let us make a covenant with our God to expel all these women and those who have been born to them, in accordance with the bidding of Hashem and of all who are concerned over the commandment of our God, and let the Teaching be obeyed.
ג וְעַתָּה נִכְרָת־בְּרִית לֵאלֹהֵינוּ לְהוֹצִיא כָל־נָשִׁים וְהַנּוֹלָד מֵהֶם בַּעֲצַת אֲדֹנָי וְהַחֲרֵדִים בְּמִצְוַת אֱלֹהֵינוּ וְכַתּוֹרָה יֵעָשֶׂה׃
4 Take action, for the responsibility is yours and we are with you. Act with resolve!”
ד קוּם כִּי־עָלֶיךָ הַדָּבָר וַאֲנַחְנוּ עִמָּךְ חֲזַק וַעֲשֵׂה׃
6 Then Ezra rose from his place in front of the House of Hashem and went into the Hamber of Yehochanan son of Elyashiv; there, he ate no bread and drank no water, for he was in mourning over the trespass of those who had returned from exile.
ז וַיַּעֲבִירוּ קוֹל בִּיהוּדָה וִירוּשָׁלַ ִם לְכֹל בְּנֵי הַגּוֹלָה לְהִקָּבֵץ יְרוּשָׁלָ ִם׃
8 and that anyone who did not come in three days would, by decision of the officers and elders, have his property confiscated and himself excluded from the congregation of the returning exiles.
ח וְכֹל אֲשֶׁר לֹא־יָבוֹא לִשְׁלֹשֶׁת הַיָּמִים כַּעֲצַת הַשָּׂרִים וְהַזְּקֵנִים יָחֳרַם כָּל־רְכוּשׁוֹ וְהוּא יִבָּדֵל מִקְּהַל הַגּוֹלָה׃
9 All the men of Yehuda and Binyamin assembled in Yerushalayim in three days; it was the ninth month, the twentieth of the month. All the people sat in the square of the House of Hashem, trembling on account of the event and because of the rains.
va-yi-ka-v’-TZU khol an-SHAY y’-hu-DAH u-vin-ya-MIN y’-ru-sha-LA-im lish-LO-shet ha-ya-MEEM HU KHO-desh ha-t’-shee-EE b’-es-REEM ba-KHO-desh va-yay-sh’-VU khol ha-AM bir-KHOV BAYT ha-e-lo-HEEM mar-ee-DEEM al ha-da-VAR u-may-ha-g’-sha-MEEM
ט וַיִּקָּבְצוּ כָל־אַנְשֵׁי־יְהוּדָה וּבִנְיָמִן יְרוּשָׁלַ ִם לִשְׁלֹשֶׁת הַיָּמִים הוּא חֹדֶשׁ הַתְּשִׁיעִי בְּעֶשְׂרִים בַּחֹדֶשׁ וַיֵּשְׁבוּ כָל־הָעָם בִּרְחוֹב בֵּית הָאֱלֹהִים מַרְעִידִים עַל־הַדָּבָר וּמֵהַגְּשָׁמִים׃
This verse only mentions the tribes of Yehuda and Binyamin, the two tribes that made up the ancient kingdom of Yehuda that had been exiled to Babylon. The other ten tribes who had formed the kingdom of Yisrael had been exiled earlier by the Assyrians, forced to assimilate and became lost to the Nation of Israel. Although today, almost all Jews are descendants of the ancient tribe of Yehuda, the modern Jewish state was called “Israel” and not “Judah.” The supratribal name “Israel” provides the most comprehensive framework for the realization of Yechezkel’s vision: “Thus said Hashem: I am going to take the stick of Yosef — which is in the hand of Efraim and of the tribes of Yisrael associated with him — and I will place the stick of Yehudah upon it and make them into one stick; they shall be joined in My hand…. I will make them a single nation in the land, on the hills of Yisrael, and one king shall be king of them all. Never again shall they be two nations, and never again shall they be divided into two kingdoms” (Ezekiel 37:19, 22). The State’s founders wished to be as inclusive as possible, allowing room for the vast cultural and ethnic diversity of the incoming exiles and thus fulfilling a role in the prophetic return of the lost ten tribes, along with the tribes of Yehuda and Binyamin, to the Land of Israel.1 comment
11 So now, make confession to Hashem, God of your fathers, and do His will, and separate yourselves from the peoples of the land and from the foreign women.”
יא וְעַתָּה תְּנוּ תוֹדָה לַיהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵי־אֲבֹתֵיכֶם וַעֲשׂוּ רְצוֹנוֹ וְהִבָּדְלוּ מֵעַמֵּי הָאָרֶץ וּמִן־הַנָּשִׁים הַנָּכְרִיּוֹת׃
12 The entire congregation responded in a loud voice, “We must surely do just as you say.
יב וַיַּעְנוּ כָל־הַקָּהָל וַיֹּאמְרוּ קוֹל גָּדוֹל כֵּן כדבריך [כִּדְבָרְךָ] עָלֵינוּ לַעֲשׂוֹת׃
13 However, many people are involved, and it is the rainy season; it is not possible to remain out in the open, nor is this the work of a day or two, because we have transgressed extensively in this matter.
יג אֲבָל הָעָם רָב וְהָעֵת גְּשָׁמִים וְאֵין כֹּחַ לַעֲמוֹד בַּחוּץ וְהַמְּלָאכָה לֹא־לְיוֹם אֶחָד וְלֹא לִשְׁנַיִם כִּי־הִרְבִּינוּ לִפְשֹׁעַ בַּדָּבָר הַזֶּה׃
14 Let our officers remain on behalf of the entire congregation, and all our townspeople who have brought home foreign women shall appear before them at scheduled times, together with the elders and judges of each town, in order to avert the burning anger of our God from us on this account.”
יד יַעֲמְדוּ־נָא שָׂרֵינוּ לְכָל־הַקָּהָל וְכֹל אֲשֶׁר בֶּעָרֵינוּ הַהֹשִׁיב נָשִׁים נָכְרִיּוֹת יָבֹא לְעִתִּים מְזֻמָּנִים וְעִמָּהֶם זִקְנֵי־עִיר וָעִיר וְשֹׁפְטֶיהָ עַד לְהָשִׁיב חֲרוֹן אַף־אֱלֹהֵינוּ מִמֶּנּוּ עַד לַדָּבָר הַזֶּה׃
15 Only Yonatan son of Asael and Jahzeiah son of Tikvah remained for this purpose, assisted by Meshullam and Shabbethai, the Leviim.
טו אַךְ יוֹנָתָן בֶּן־עֲשָׂהאֵל וְיַחְזְיָה בֶן־תִּקְוָה עָמְדוּ עַל־זֹאת וּמְשֻׁלָּם וְשַׁבְּתַי הַלֵּוִי עֲזָרֻם׃
16 The returning exiles did so. Ezra the Kohen and the men who were the chiefs of the ancestral clans—all listed by name—sequestered themselves on the first day of the tenth month to study the matter.
17 By the first day of the first month they were done with all the men who had brought home foreign women.
יז וַיְכַלּוּ בַכֹּל אֲנָשִׁים הַהֹשִׁיבוּ נָשִׁים נָכְרִיּוֹת עַד יוֹם אֶחָד לַחֹדֶשׁ הָרִאשׁוֹן׃
19 They gave their word to expel their wives and, acknowledging their guilt, offered a ram from the flock to expiate it.
יט וַיִּתְּנוּ יָדָם לְהוֹצִיא נְשֵׁיהֶם וַאֲשֵׁמִים אֵיל־צֹאן עַל־אַשְׁמָתָם׃
20 Of the sons of Immer: Chanani and Zebadiah;
כ וּמִבְּנֵי אִמֵּר חֲנָנִי וּזְבַדְיָה׃
21 of the sons of Harim: Maaseiah, Eliyahu, Shemaya, Yechiel, and Uzziyahu;
כא וּמִבְּנֵי חָרִם מַעֲשֵׂיָה וְאֵלִיָּה וּשְׁמַעְיָה וִיחִיאֵל וְעֻזִיָּה׃
22 of the sons of Pashhur: Elioenai, Maaseiah, Ishmael, Nethanel, Yozavad, and Elasah;
25 Of the Israelites: of the sons of Parosh: Ramiah, Izziah, Malchijah, Mijamin, Elazar, Malchijah, and Benaiah;
כה וּמִיִּשְׂרָאֵל מִבְּנֵי פַרְעֹשׁ רַמְיָה וְיִזִּיָּה וּמַלְכִּיָּה וּמִיָּמִן וְאֶלְעָזָר וּמַלְכִּיָּה וּבְנָיָה׃
26 of the sons of Elam: Mattaniah, Zecharya, Yechiel, Abdi, Jeremoth, and Eliyahu;
כו וּמִבְּנֵי עֵילָם מַתַּנְיָה זְכַרְיָה וִיחִיאֵל וְעַבְדִּי וִירֵמוֹת וְאֵלִיָּה׃
27 of the sons of Zattu: Elioenai, Elyashiv, Mattaniah, Jeremoth, Zabad, and Aziza;
כז וּמִבְּנֵי זַתּוּא אֶלְיוֹעֵנַי אֶלְיָשִׁיב מַתַּנְיָה וִירֵמוֹת וְזָבָד וַעֲזִיזָא׃
28 of the sons of Bebai: Yehochanan, Chananya, Zabbai, and Athlai;
כח וּמִבְּנֵי בֵּבָי יְהוֹחָנָן חֲנַנְיָה זַבַּי עַתְלָי׃
29 of the sons of Bani: Meshullam, Malluch, Adaiah, Yashuv, Sheal, and Ramoth;
כט וּמִבְּנֵי בָּנִי מְשֻׁלָּם מַלּוּךְ וַעֲדָיָה יָשׁוּב וּשְׁאָל ירמות [וְרָמוֹת׃]
ל וּמִבְּנֵי פַּחַת מוֹאָב עַדְנָא וּכְלָל בְּנָיָה מַעֲשֵׂיָה מַתַּנְיָה בְצַלְאֵל וּבִנּוּי וּמְנַשֶּׁה׃
31 of the sons of Harim: Eliezer, Isshijah, Malchijah, Shemaya, and Shimeon;
32 also Binyamin, Malluch, and Shemariah;
לב בְּנְיָמִן מַלּוּךְ שְׁמַרְיָה׃
33 of the sons of Hashum: Mattenai, Mattattah, Zabad, Eliphelet, Jeremai, Menashe, and Shim’i;
לג מִבְּנֵי חָשֻׁם מַתְּנַי מַתַּתָּה זָבָד אֱלִיפֶלֶט יְרֵמַי מְנַשֶּׁה שִׁמְעִי׃
35 also Benaiah, Bedeiah, Cheluhu,
לה בְּנָיָה בֵדְיָה כלהי [כְּלוּהוּ׃]
37 Mattaniah, Mattenai, Jaasai,
לז מַתַּנְיָה מַתְּנַי ויעשו [וְיַעֲשָׂי׃]
38 Bani, Binnui, Shim’i,
לח וּבָנִי וּבִנּוּי שִׁמְעִי׃
40 Machnadebai, Shashai, Sharai,
מ מַכְנַדְבַי שָׁשַׁי שָׁרָי׃
41 Azarel, Shelemiah, Shemariah,
מא עֲזַרְאֵל וְשֶׁלֶמְיָהוּ שְׁמַרְיָה׃
44 All these had married foreign women, among whom were some women who had borne children.
מד כָּל־אֵלֶּה נשאי [נָשְׂאוּ] נָשִׁים נָכְרִיּוֹת וְיֵשׁ מֵהֶם נָשִׁים וַיָּשִׂימוּ בָּנִים׃