Nehemiah 1:1-11, NLT
1These are the memoirs of Nehemiah son of Hacaliah.
Nehemiah’s Concern for Jerusalem
In late autumn, in the month of Kislev, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes’ reign,*1:1 Hebrew In the month of Kislev of the twentieth year. A number of dates in the book of Nehemiah can be cross-checked with dates in surviving Persian records and related accurately to our modern calendar. This month of the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar occurred within the months of November and December 446 b.c. The twentieth year probably refers to the reign of King Artaxerxes I; compare 2:1; 5:14. I was at the fortress of Susa.
3They said to me, “Things are not going well for those who returned to the province of Judah. They are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem has been torn down, and the gates have been destroyed by fire.”
4When I heard this, I sat down and wept. In fact, for days I mourned, fasted, and prayed to the God of heaven.
“O Lord, God of heaven, the great and awesome God who keeps his covenant of unfailing love with those who love him and obey his commands,
8“Please remember what you told your servant Moses: ‘If you are unfaithful to me, I will scatter you among the nations.
10“The people you rescued by your great power and strong hand are your servants.
In those days I was the king’s cup-bearer.