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Zechariah Chapter 7 | Parsha:

1In the fourth year of King Darius, on the fourth day of the ninth month, Kislev, the word of the Lord came to Zechariah— 2when Bethel-sharezer and Regem-melech and his men sent to entreat the favor of the Lord, 3[and] to address this inquiry to the priests of the House of the Lord and to the prophets: “Shall I weep and practice abstinence in the fifth month, as I have been doing all these years?”

4Thereupon the word of the Lord of Hosts came to me: 5Say to all the people of the land and to the priests: When you fasted and lamented in the fifth and seventh months all these seventy years, did you fast for my benefit? 6And when you eat and drink, who but you does the eating, and who but you does the drinking? 7Look, this is the message that the Lord proclaimed through the earlier prophets, when Jerusalem and the towns about her were peopled and tranquil, when the Negeb and the Shephelah were peopled.

8And the word of the Lord to Zechariah continued: 9Thus said the Lord of Hosts: Execute true justice; deal loyally and compassionately with one another. 10Do not defraud the widow, the orphan, the stranger, and the poor; and do not plot evil against one another.— 11But they refused to pay heed. They presented a balky back and turned a deaf ear. 12They hardened their hearts like adamant against heeding the instruction and admonition that the Lord of Hosts sent to them by His spirit through the earlier prophets; and a terrible wrath issued from the Lord of Hosts. 13Even as He called and they would not listen, “So,” said the Lord of Hosts, “let them call and I will not listen.” 14I dispersed them among all those nations which they had not known, and the land was left behind them desolate, without any who came and went. They caused a delightful land to be turned into a desolation.

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