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Esther 14

 
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1 καὶ Εσθηρ ἡ βασίλισσα κατέφυγεν ἐπὶ τὸν κύριον ἐν ἀγῶνι θανάτου κατειλημμένη 2 καὶ ἀφελομένη τὰ ἱμάτια τῆς δόξης αὐτῆς ἐνεδύσατο ἱμάτια στενοχωρίας καὶ πένθους καὶ ἀντὶ τῶν ὑπερηφάνων ἡδυσμάτων σποδοῦ καὶ κοπριῶν ἔπλησεν τὴν κεφαλὴν αὐτῆς καὶ τὸ σῶμα αὐτῆς ἐταπείνωσεν σφόδρα καὶ πάντα τόπον κόσμου ἀγαλλιάματος αὐτῆς ἔπλησε στρεπτῶν τριχῶν αὐτῆς 3 καὶ ἐδεῖτο κυρίου θεοῦ Ισραηλ καὶ εἶπεν κύριέ μου ὁ βασιλεὺς ἡμῶν σὺ εἶ μόνος βοήθησόν μοι τῇ μόνῃ καὶ μὴ ἐχούσῃ βοηθὸν εἰ μὴ σέ 4 ὅτι κίνδυνός μου ἐν χειρί μου 5 ἐγὼ ἤκουον ἐκ γενετῆς μου ἐν φυλῇ πατριᾶς μου ὅτι σύ κύριε ἔλαβες τὸν Ισραηλ ἐκ πάντων τῶν ἐθνῶν καὶ τοὺς πατέρας ἡμῶν ἐκ πάντων τῶν προγόνων αὐτῶν εἰς κληρονομίαν αἰώνιον καὶ ἐποίησας αὐτοῖς ὅσα ἐλάλησας 6 καὶ νῦν ἡμάρτομεν ἐνώπιόν σου καὶ παρέδωκας ἡμᾶς εἰς χεῖρας τῶν ἐχθρῶν ἡμῶν 7 ἀν{Q'} ὧν ἐδοξάσαμεν τοὺς θεοὺς αὐτῶν δίκαιος εἶ κύριε 8 καὶ νῦν οὐχ ἱκανώθησαν ἐν πικρασμῷ δουλείας ἡμῶν ἀλλὰ ἔθηκαν τὰς χεῖρας αὐτῶν ἐπὶ τὰς χεῖρας τῶν εἰδώλων αὐτῶν 9 ἐξᾶραι ὁρισμὸν στόματός σου καὶ ἀφανίσαι κληρονομίαν σου καὶ ἐμφράξαι στόμα αἰνούντων σοι καὶ σβέσαι δόξαν οἴκου σου καὶ θυσιαστήριόν σου 10 καὶ ἀνοῖξαι στόμα ἐθνῶν εἰς ἀρετὰς ματαίων καὶ θαυμασθῆναι βασιλέα σάρκινον εἰς αἰῶνα 1 And what of queen Esther? She too had recourse to the Lord, in her fear of the danger that threatened. 2 Laid aside were those royal robes of hers, her array must tell only of grief and lament; dust and dung should be all her anointing now. Her body she tamed with fasting; only her torn locks hung where once she had loved to adorn her beauty. 3 In such guise she made her plea to the Lord, the God of Israel; Lord, our King, thou reignest alone; befriend a lonely heart that can find help nowhere but in thee. 4 The peril I must take upon me is plain to view. 5 Lord, my childhood’s lessons are still unforgotten; I know that Israel, for all time, is the people of thy choice, chosen stock of a chosen race; I know that thy warnings have come true, 6 and if thou hast given our enemies the mastery, it is because we sinned against thee, 7 by worshipping the gods they worshipped; in all this, Lord, thou art nothing to blame. 8 But now they are not content with holding us down under a cruel yoke; strong in the fancied protection of these false gods, 9 they would fain set all thy promises aside, leave thee no possession on earth at all. They would silence the voices that praise thee, dim the glories of thy temple and thy altar;[1] 10 nothing must be heard but the chant of the Gentiles boasting of their false gods, offering their endless praises to a mortal king. 1 Esther quoque regina confugit ad Dominum, pavens periculum quod imminebat. 2 Cumque deposuisset vestes regias, fletibus et luctui apta indumenta suscepit, et pro unguentis variis, cinere et stercore implevit caput, et corpus suum humiliavit jejuniis: omniaque loca, in quibus antea lætari consueverat, crinium laceratione complevit. 3 Et deprecabatur Dominum Deum Israël, dicens: Domine mi, qui rex noster es solus, adjuva me solitariam, et cujus præter te nullus est auxiliator alius. 4 Periculum meum in manibus meis est. 5 Audivi a patre meo quod tu, Domine, tulisses Israël de cunctis gentibus, et patres nostros ex omnibus retro majoribus suis, ut possideres hæreditatem sempiternam, fecistique eis sicut locutus es. 6 Peccavimus in conspectu tuo, et idcirco tradidisti nos in manus inimicorum nostrorum: 7 coluimus enim deos eorum. Justus es Domine: 8 et nunc non eis sufficit, quod durissima nos opprimunt servitute, sed robur manuum suarum, idolorum potentiæ deputantes, 9 volunt tua mutare promissa, et delere hæreditatem tuam, et claudere ora laudantium te, atque extinguere gloriam templi et altaris tui, 10 ut aperiant ora gentium, et laudent idolorum fortitudinem, et prædicent carnalem regem in sempiternum.
11 μὴ παραδῷς κύριε τὸ σκῆπτρόν σου τοῖς μὴ οὖσιν καὶ μὴ καταγελασάτωσαν ἐν τῇ πτώσει ἡμῶν ἀλλὰ στρέψον τὴν βουλὴν αὐτῶν ἐ{P'} αὐτούς τὸν δὲ ἀρξάμενον ἐ{F'} ἡμᾶς παραδειγμάτισον 12 μνήσθητι κύριε γνώσθητι ἐν καιρῷ θλίψεως ἡμῶν καὶ ἐμὲ θάρσυνον βασιλεῦ τῶν θεῶν καὶ πάσης ἀρχῆς ἐπικρατῶν 13 δὸς λόγον εὔρυθμον εἰς τὸ στόμα μου ἐνώπιον τοῦ λέοντος καὶ μετάθες τὴν καρδίαν αὐτοῦ εἰς μῖσος τοῦ πολεμοῦντος ἡμᾶς εἰς συντέλειαν αὐτοῦ καὶ τῶν ὁμονοούντων αὐτῷ 14 ἡμᾶς δὲ ῥῦσαι ἐν χειρί σου καὶ βοήθησόν μοι τῇ μόνῃ καὶ μὴ ἐχούσῃ εἰ μὴ σέ κύριε 15 πάντων γνῶσιν ἔχεις καὶ οἶδας ὅτι ἐμίσησα δόξαν ἀνόμων καὶ βδελύσσομαι κοίτην ἀπεριτμήτων καὶ παντὸς ἀλλοτρίου 16 σὺ οἶδας τὴν ἀνάγκην μου ὅτι βδελύσσομαι τὸ σημεῖον τῆς ὑπερηφανίας μου ὅ ἐστιν ἐπὶ τῆς κεφαλῆς μου ἐν ἡμέραις ὀπτασίας μου βδελύσσομαι αὐτὸ ὡς ῥάκος καταμηνίων καὶ οὐ φορῶ αὐτὸ ἐν ἡμέραις ἡσυχίας μου 17 καὶ οὐκ ἔφαγεν ἡ δούλη σου τράπεζαν Αμαν καὶ οὐκ ἐδόξασα συμπόσιον βασιλέως οὐδὲ ἔπιον οἶνον σπονδῶν 18 καὶ οὐκ ηὐφράνθη ἡ δούλη σου ἀ{F'} ἡμέρας μεταβολῆς μου μέχρι νῦν πλὴν ἐπὶ σοί κύριε ὁ θεὸς Αβρααμ 19 ὁ θεὸς ὁ ἰσχύων ἐπὶ πάντας εἰσάκουσον φωνὴν ἀπηλπισμένων καὶ ῥῦσαι ἡμᾶς ἐκ χειρὸς τῶν πονηρευομένων καὶ ῥῦσαί με ἐκ τοῦ φόβου μου 11 Lord, wilt thou yield thy sceptre to gods that are no gods? Must the heathen laugh over our downfall? Let their own scheming recoil on them; bring him to a swift end, the man who has loosed his fury on us! 12 Lord, bethink thee of our need, give proof of thy power; Lord, that hast no rival in heaven or earth, grant me confidence. 13 Frame my utterance, as I speak with this fierce lord of mine, and embitter him against our enemy, bringing ruin on Aman and all that take Aman’s part. 14 So let thy power deliver us; grant help where help save thine is none. Lord, thou knowest all things; 15 thou knowest how I hate the splendours of a godless court, how unwillingly I mate with an alien lord, a lord uncircumcised. 16 The sport of ill-chance, how little I love the proud emblem of royalty I must wear before the world! Loathsome to me as the rags we women cast aside, how gladly I tear it from my brow, in this cool hour! 17 At Aman’s board I would never sit; even the king’s banquets have no taste for me, nor would I drink the wine from which he pours libation. 18 Ever since they brought me here, comfort thy handmaid had none, Lord God of Abraham, save in thee! 19 Lord, that hast power over all men, listen to this cry of despair; save us all from the clutches of our enemies, and rid me of these fears that daunt me! 11 Ne tradas, Domine, sceptrum tuum his, qui non sunt, ne rideant ad ruinam nostram: sed converte consilium eorum super eos, et eum qui in nos cœpit sævire, disperde. 12 Memento, Domine, et ostende te nobis in tempore tribulationis nostræ, et da mihi fiduciam, Domine rex deorum, et universæ potestatis: 13 tribue sermonem compositum in ore meo in conspectu leonis, et transfer cor illius in odium hostis nostri, ut et ipse pereat, et ceteri qui ei consentiunt. 14 Nos autem libera manu tua, et adjuva me, nullum aliud auxilium habentem nisi te, Domine, qui habes omnium scientiam, 15 et nosti quia oderim gloriam iniquorum, et detester cubile incircumcisorum, et omnis alienigenæ. 16 Tu scis necessitatem meam, quod abominer signum superbiæ et gloriæ meæ, quod est super caput meum in diebus ostentationis meæ, et detester illud quasi pannum menstruatæ, et non portem in diebus silentii mei, 17 et quod non comederim in mensa Aman, nec mihi placuerit convivium regis, et non biberim vinum libaminum: 18 et numquam lætata sit ancilla tua, ex quo huc translata sum usque in præsentem diem, nisi in te, Domine Deus Abraham. 19 Deus fortis super omnes, exaudi vocem eorum qui nullam aliam spem habent, et libera nos de manu iniquorum, et erue me a timore meo.
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Copyright © 2013 by Kevin Knight. Dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.