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2-3 It happened after the people of Bethel had sent Sharezer with Regem-Melech and his men to ask the priests in the Lord’s temple and the prophets to pray for them. So they prayed, “Should we mourn and go without eating during the fifth month,[a] as we have done for many years?”

4-5 It was then that the Lord All-Powerful told me to say to everyone in the country, including the priests:

For seventy years you have gone without eating during the fifth and seventh months of the year. But did you really do it for me?

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Footnotes

  1. 7.2,3 fifth month: Ab, the fifth month of the Hebrew calendar, from about mid-July to mid-August. The temple was destroyed by the Babylonians in the year 587 or 586 B.C.

The people of Bethel had sent Sharezer and Regem-Melek, together with their men, to entreat(A) the Lord(B) by asking the priests of the house of the Lord Almighty and the prophets, “Should I mourn(C) and fast in the fifth(D) month, as I have done for so many years?”

Then the word of the Lord Almighty came to me:

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When they had sent unto the house of God Sherezer and Regemmelech, and their men, to pray before the Lord,

And to speak unto the priests which were in the house of the Lord of hosts, and to the prophets, saying, Should I weep in the fifth month, separating myself, as I have done these so many years?

Then came the word of the Lord of hosts unto me, saying,

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