8 Now all athe people gathered together as one man in the open square that was bin front of the Water Gate; and they told Ezra the cscribe to bring the Book of the Law of Moses, which the Lord had commanded Israel. 2 So Ezra the priest brought dthe Law before the assembly of men and women and all who could hear with understanding eon the first day of the seventh month. 3 Then he fread from it in the open square that was in front of the Water Gate 1from morning until midday, before the men and women and those who could understand; and the ears of all the people were attentive to the Book of the Law.
4 So Ezra the scribe stood on a platform of wood which they had made for the purpose; and beside him, at his right hand, stood Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Urijah, Hilkiah, and Maaseiah; and at his left hand Pedaiah, Mishael, Malchijah, Hashum, Hashbadana, Zechariah, and Meshullam. 5 And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people, for he was standing above all the people; and when he opened it, all the people gstood up. 6 And Ezra blessed the Lord, the great God.
7 Also Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodijah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites, khelped the people to understand the Law; and the people lstood in their place. 8 So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading.
9 mAnd Nehemiah, who was the 2governor, Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, n“This day is holy to the Lord your God; odo not mourn nor weep.” For all the people wept, when they heard the words of the Law.
10 Then he said to them, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, pand send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”
11 So the Levites quieted all the people, saying, “Be still, for the day is holy; do not be grieved.” 12 And all the people went their way to eat and drink, to qsend portions and rejoice greatly, because they runderstood the words that were declared to them.
13 Now on the second day the heads of the fathers’ houses of all the people, with the priests and Levites, were gathered to Ezra the scribe, in order to understand the words of the Law. 14 And they found written in the Law, which the Lord had commanded by Moses, that the children of Israel should dwell in sbooths 3during the feast of the seventh month, 15 and tthat they should announce and proclaim in all their cities and uin Jerusalem, saying, “Go out to the mountain, and vbring olive branches, branches of oil trees, myrtle branches, palm branches, and branches of leafy trees, to make booths, as it is written.”
16 Then the people went out and brought them and made themselves booths, each one on the wroof of his house, or in their courtyards or the courts of the house of God, and in the open square of the xWater Gate yand in the open square of the Gate of Ephraim. 17 So the whole assembly of those who had returned from the captivity made 4booths and sat under the booths; for since the days of Joshua the son of Nun until that day the children of Israel had not done so. And there was very zgreat gladness. 18 Also aday by day, from the first day until the last day, he read from the Book of the Law of God. And they kept the feast bseven days; and on the ceighth day there was a sacred assembly, according to the prescribed manner.
Lit. from the light