1 all the people gathered together z at the square in front of the Water Gate. a They asked Ezra the scribe b to bring the book of the law of Moses c that the Lord had given Israel. 2 On the first day of the seventh month, d Ezra the priest e brought the law f before the assembly of men, women, and all who could listen with understanding. 3 While he was facing the square in front of the Water Gate, g he read out of it from daybreak until noon before the men, the women, and those who could understand. All the people listened attentively h to the book of the law. i 4 Ezra the scribe stood on a high wooden platform j made for this purpose. Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah, and Maaseiah stood beside him on his right; to his left were Pedaiah, Mishael, Malchijah, Hashum, Hash-baddanah, Zechariah, and Meshullam. 5 Ezra opened the book in full view of all the people, since he was elevated above everyone. As he opened it, all the people stood up. 6 Ezra praised the Lord, the great God, and with their hands uplifted k all the people said, “* Amen, Amen!” l Then they bowed down and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground. m
7 Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, and Pelaiah, n who were Levites, o p explained the law q to the people as they stood in their places. 8 They read out of the book of the law of God, translating and giving the meaning so that the people could understand what was read.
8:3 * The ears of all the people listened