(每日读经1/23) 尼希米记 - Nehemiah 5.1-19
And there was a great cry of the people and their wives against their brothers the Jews,
For there were some who said, With our sons and our daughters we are many; therefore we must get grain that we may eat and live.
And there were some who said, We have pledged our fields and our vineyards and our houses that we might get grain in this famine.
And there were some who said, We have borrowed money against our fields and our vineyards for the king's tribute.
Yet now our flesh is like the flesh of our brothers, our children like their children; and now we are bringing our sons and daughters into bondage as slaves. And some of our daughters have already been brought into bondage; and it is not in our power to deliver them, for our fields and vineyards belong to others.
And I was very angry when I heard their cry and these words.
And when I had considered this matter in my heart, I rebuked the nobles and the rulers and said to them, You men are charging interest, each man against his brother! And I set a great assembly against them.
And I said to them, We have bought back our brothers the Jews who have been sold to the nations according to the best of our ability. So would you even sell your brothers that they would have to be sold back to us? And they held their peace and could find not a word to answer.
Then I said, The thing that you are doing is not good. Should you not walk in the fear of our God because of the reproach of the nations our enemies?
And even I, my brothers, and my servants lend them money and grain. Let us now abandon such taking of interest.
Restore now to them, as of today, their fields, their vineyards, their olive groves, and their houses, as well as the hundredth part of the money and of the grain, new wine, and fresh oil that you charge them as interest.
And they said, We will restore it, and we will require nothing from them; so will we do, even as you say. Then I called for the priests and took an oath from them that they would do according to this promise.
I also shook out the lap of my garment and said, May God shake out in the same way every man from his house and from his possessions who does not perform this promise; even so may he be shaken out and emptied. And all the assembly said, Amen; and they praised Jehovah. And the people acted according to this promise.
Moreover from the time that the king appointed me to be governor in the land of Judah, from the twentieth year even to the thirty-second year of Artaxerxes the king, twelve years, I and my brothers did not eat the food appointed for the governor.
But the former governors, who were before me, laid heavy burdens on the people and took from them food and wine, besides forty shekels of silver; even their servants tyrannized the people. But I did not do so, because of the fear of God.
And I also applied myself to the work on this wall. And we did not acquire fields, and all my servants were gathered there for the work.
And there were at my table one hundred fifty men, Jews and rulers, besides those who came to us from the nations that surrounded us.
And what was prepared for one day was one ox and six choice sheep; also fowl was prepared for me, as well as all kinds of wine in abundance every ten days. Yet for this I did not demand the food appointed for the governor, for the service was heavy upon this people.
Remember me, O my God, for good, all that I have done for this people.