New King James Version
The Eagles and the Vine
17 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, pose a riddle, and speak a (A)parable to the house of Israel, 3 and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God:
(B)“A great eagle with large wings and long pinions,
Full of feathers of various colors,
Came to Lebanon
And (C)took from the cedar the highest branch.
4 He cropped off its topmost young twig
And carried it to a land of trade;
He set it in a city of merchants.
5 Then he took some of the seed of the land
And planted it in (D)a fertile field;
He placed it by abundant waters
And set it (E)like a willow tree.
6 And it grew and became a spreading vine (F)of low stature;
Its branches turned toward him,
But its roots were under it.
So it became a vine,
Brought forth branches,
And put forth shoots.
7 “But there was [a]another great eagle with large wings and many feathers;
And behold, (G)this vine bent its roots toward him,
And stretched its branches toward him,
From the garden terrace where it had been planted,
That he might water it.
8 It was planted in [b]good soil by many waters,
To bring forth branches, bear fruit,
And become a majestic vine.” ’
9 “Say, ‘Thus says the Lord God:
“Will it thrive?
(H)Will he not pull up its roots,
Cut off its fruit,
And leave it to wither?
All of its spring leaves will wither,
And no great power or many people
Will be needed to pluck it up by its roots.
10 Behold, it is planted,
Will it thrive?
(I)Will it not utterly wither when the east wind touches it?
It will wither in the garden terrace where it grew.” ’ ”
11 Moreover the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 12 “Say now to (J)the rebellious house: ‘Do you not know what these things mean?’ Tell them, ‘Indeed (K)the king of Babylon went to Jerusalem and took its king and princes, and led them with him to Babylon. 13 (L)And he took the king’s offspring, made a covenant with him, (M)and put him under oath. He also took away the mighty of the land, 14 that the kingdom might be (N)brought low and not lift itself up, but that by keeping his covenant it might stand. 15 But (O)he rebelled against him by sending his ambassadors to Egypt, (P)that they might give him horses and many people. (Q)Will he prosper? Will he who does such things escape? Can he break a covenant and still be delivered?
16 ‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘surely (R)in the place where the king dwells who made him king, whose oath he despised and whose covenant he broke—with him in the midst of Babylon he shall die. 17 (S)Nor will Pharaoh with his mighty army and great company do anything in the war, (T)when they heap up a siege mound and build a [c]wall to cut off many persons. 18 Since he despised the oath by breaking the covenant, and in fact (U)gave[d] his hand and still did all these things, he shall not escape.’ ”
19 Therefore thus says the Lord God: “As I live, surely My oath which he despised, and My covenant which he broke, I will recompense on his own head. 20 I will (V)spread My net over him, and he shall be taken in My snare. I will bring him to Babylon and (W)try him there for the [e]treason which he committed against Me. 21 (X)All his [f]fugitives with all his troops shall fall by the sword, and those who remain shall be (Y)scattered to every wind; and you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken.”
Israel Exalted at Last(Z)
22 Thus says the Lord God: “I will take also one of the highest (AA)branches of the high cedar and set it out. I will crop off from the topmost of its young twigs (AB)a tender one, and will (AC)plant it on a high and prominent mountain. 23 (AD)On the mountain height of Israel I will plant it; and it will bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a majestic cedar. (AE)Under it will dwell birds of every sort; in the shadow of its branches they will dwell. 24 And all the trees of the field shall know that I, the Lord, (AF)have brought down the high tree and exalted the low tree, dried up the green tree and made the dry tree flourish; (AG)I, the Lord, have spoken and have done it.”
A False Proverb Refuted
18 The word of the Lord came to me again, saying, 2 “What do you mean when you use this proverb concerning the land of Israel, saying:
‘The (AH)fathers have eaten sour grapes,
And the children’s teeth are set on edge’?
3 “As I live,” says the Lord God, “you shall no longer use this proverb in Israel.
4 “Behold, all souls are (AI)Mine;
The soul of the father
As well as the soul of the son is Mine;
(AJ)The soul who sins shall die.
5 But if a man is just
And does what is lawful and right;
6 (AK)If he has not eaten [g]on the mountains,
Nor lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel,
Nor (AL)defiled his neighbor’s wife,
Nor approached (AM)a woman during her impurity;
7 If he has not (AN)oppressed anyone,
But has restored to the debtor his (AO)pledge;
Has robbed no one by violence,
But has (AP)given his bread to the hungry
And covered the naked with (AQ)clothing;
8 If he has not [h]exacted (AR)usury
Nor taken any increase,
But has withdrawn his hand from iniquity
And (AS)executed true [i]judgment between man and man;
9 If he has walked in My statutes
And kept My judgments faithfully—
He is just;
He shall surely (AT)live!”
Says the Lord God.
10 “If he begets a son who is a robber
Or (AU)a shedder of blood,
Who does any of these things
11 And does none of those duties,
But has eaten [j]on the mountains
Or defiled his neighbor’s wife;
12 If he has oppressed the poor and needy,
Robbed by violence,
Not restored the pledge,
Lifted his eyes to the idols,
Or (AV)committed abomination;
13 If he has exacted usury
Or taken increase—
Shall he then live?
He shall not live!
If he has done any of these abominations,
He shall surely die;
(AW)His blood shall be upon him.
14 “If, however, he begets a son
Who sees all the sins which his father has done,
And considers but does not do likewise;
15 (AX)Who has not eaten [k]on the mountains,
Nor lifted his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel,
Nor defiled his neighbor’s wife;
16 Has not oppressed anyone,
Nor withheld a pledge,
Nor robbed by violence,
But has given his bread to the hungry
And covered the naked with clothing;
17 Who has withdrawn his hand from [l]the poor
And not received usury or increase,
But has executed My judgments
And walked in My statutes—
He shall not die for the iniquity of his father;
He shall surely live!
18 “As for his father,
Because he cruelly oppressed,
Robbed his brother by violence,
And did what is not good among his people,
Behold, (AY)he shall die for his iniquity.
Turn and Live
19 “Yet you say, ‘Why (AZ)should the son not bear the guilt of the father?’ Because the son has done what is lawful and right, and has kept all My statutes and observed them, he shall surely live. 20 (BA)The soul who sins shall die. (BB)The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. (BC)The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, (BD)and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.
21 “But (BE)if a wicked man turns from all his sins which he has committed, keeps all My statutes, and does what is lawful and right, he shall surely live; he shall not die. 22 (BF)None of the transgressions which he has committed shall be remembered against him; because of the righteousness which he has done, he shall (BG)live. 23 (BH)Do I have any pleasure at all that the wicked should die?” says the Lord God, “and not that he should turn from his ways and live?
24 “But (BI)when a righteous man turns away from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and does according to all the abominations that the wicked man does, shall he live? (BJ)All the righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; because of the unfaithfulness of which he is guilty and the sin which he has committed, because of them he shall die.
25 “Yet you say, (BK)‘The way of the Lord is not fair.’ Hear now, O house of Israel, is it not My way which is fair, and your ways which are not fair? 26 (BL)When a righteous man turns away from his righteousness, commits iniquity, and dies in it, it is because of the iniquity which he has done that he dies. 27 Again, (BM)when a wicked man turns away from the wickedness which he committed, and does what is lawful and right, he preserves himself alive. 28 Because he (BN)considers and turns away from all the transgressions which he committed, he shall surely live; he shall not die. 29 (BO)Yet the house of Israel says, ‘The way of the Lord is not fair.’ O house of Israel, is it not My ways which are fair, and your ways which are not fair?
30 (BP)“Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways,” says the Lord God. (BQ)“Repent, and turn from all your transgressions, so that iniquity will not be your ruin. 31 (BR)Cast away from you all the transgressions which you have committed, and get yourselves a (BS)new heart and a new spirit. For why should you die, O house of Israel? 32 For (BT)I have no pleasure in the death of one who dies,” says the Lord God. “Therefore turn and (BU)live!”
19 “Moreover (BV)take up a lamentation for the princes of Israel, 2 and say:
‘What is your mother? A lioness:
She lay down among the lions;
Among the young lions she nourished her cubs.
3 She brought up one of her cubs,
And (BW)he became a young lion;
He learned to catch prey,
And he devoured men.
4 The nations also heard of him;
He was trapped in their pit,
And they brought him with chains to the land of (BX)Egypt.
5 ‘When she saw that she waited, that her hope was lost,
She took (BY)another of her cubs and made him a young lion.
6 (BZ)He roved among the lions,
And (CA)became a young lion;
He learned to catch prey;
He devoured men.
7 [m]He knew their desolate places,
And laid waste their cities;
The land with its fullness was desolated
By the noise of his roaring.
8 (CB)Then the nations set against him from the provinces on every side,
And spread their net over him;
(CC)He was trapped in their pit.
9 (CD)They put him in a cage with [n]chains,
And brought him to the king of Babylon;
They brought him in nets,
That his voice should no longer be heard on (CE)the mountains of Israel.
10 ‘Your mother was (CF)like a vine in your [o]bloodline,
Planted by the waters,
(CG)Fruitful and full of branches
Because of many waters.
11 She had strong branches for scepters of rulers.
(CH)She towered in stature above the thick branches,
And was seen in her height amid the [p]dense foliage.
12 But she was (CI)plucked up in fury,
She was cast down to the ground,
And the (CJ)east wind dried her fruit.
Her strong branches were broken and withered;
The fire consumed them.
13 And now she is planted in the wilderness,
In a dry and thirsty land.
14 (CK)Fire has come out from a rod of her branches
And devoured her fruit,
So that she has no strong branch—a scepter for ruling.’ ”
(CL)This is a lamentation, and has become a lamentation.
The Rebellions of Israel
20 It came to pass in the seventh year, in the fifth month, on the tenth day of the month, that (CM)certain of the elders of Israel came to inquire of the Lord, and sat before me. 2 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 3 “Son of man, speak to the elders of Israel, and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Have you come to inquire of Me? As I live,” says the Lord God, (CN)“I will not be inquired of by you.” ’ 4 Will you judge them, son of man, will you judge them? Then (CO)make known to them the abominations of their fathers.
5 “Say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “On the day when (CP)I chose Israel and raised My hand in an oath to the descendants of the house of Jacob, and made Myself (CQ)known to them in the land of Egypt, I raised My hand in an oath to them, saying, (CR)‘I am the Lord your God.’ 6 On that day I raised My hand in an oath to them, (CS)to bring them out of the land of Egypt into a land that I had searched out for them, (CT)‘flowing with milk and honey,’ (CU)the glory of all lands. 7 Then I said to them, ‘Each of you, (CV)throw away (CW)the abominations which are before his eyes, and do not defile yourselves with (CX)the idols of Egypt. I am the Lord your God.’ 8 But they rebelled against Me and would not [q]obey Me. They did not all cast away the abominations which were before their eyes, nor did they forsake the idols of Egypt. Then I said, ‘I will (CY)pour out My fury on them and fulfill My anger against them in the midst of the land of Egypt.’ 9 (CZ)But I acted for My name’s sake, that it should not be profaned before the Gentiles among whom they were, in whose sight I had made Myself (DA)known to them, to bring them out of the land of Egypt.
10 “Therefore I (DB)made them go out of the land of Egypt and brought them into the wilderness. 11 (DC)And I gave them My statutes and [r]showed them My judgments, (DD)‘which, if a man does, he shall live by them.’ 12 Moreover I also gave them My (DE)Sabbaths, to be a sign between them and Me, that they might know that I am the Lord who sanctifies them. 13 Yet the house of Israel (DF)rebelled against Me in the wilderness; they did not walk in My statutes; they (DG)despised My judgments, (DH)‘which, if a man does, he shall live by them’; and they greatly (DI)defiled My Sabbaths. Then I said I would pour out My fury on them in the (DJ)wilderness, to consume them. 14 (DK)But I acted for My name’s sake, that it should not be profaned before the Gentiles, in whose sight I had brought them out. 15 So (DL)I also raised My hand in an oath to them in the wilderness, that I would not bring them into the land which I had given them, (DM)‘flowing with milk and honey,’ (DN)the glory of all lands, 16 (DO)because they despised My judgments and did not walk in My statutes, but profaned My Sabbaths; for (DP)their heart went after their idols. 17 (DQ)Nevertheless My eye spared them from destruction. I did not make an end of them in the wilderness.
18 “But I said to their children in the wilderness, ‘Do not walk in the statutes of your fathers, nor observe their judgments, nor defile yourselves with their idols. 19 I am the Lord your God: (DR)Walk in My statutes, keep My judgments, and do them; 20 (DS)hallow My Sabbaths, and they will be a sign between Me and you, that you may know that I am the Lord your God.’
21 “Notwithstanding, (DT)the children rebelled against Me; they did not walk in My statutes, and were not careful to observe My judgments, (DU)‘which, if a man does, he shall live by them’; but they profaned My Sabbaths. Then I said I would pour out My fury on them and fulfill My anger against them in the wilderness. 22 Nevertheless I [s]withdrew My hand and acted for My name’s sake, that it should not be profaned in the sight of the Gentiles, in whose sight I had brought them out. 23 Also I raised My hand in an oath to those in the wilderness, that (DV)I would scatter them among the Gentiles and disperse them throughout the countries, 24 (DW)because they had not executed My judgments, but had despised My statutes, profaned My Sabbaths, and (DX)their eyes were fixed on their fathers’ idols.
25 “Therefore (DY)I also gave them up to statutes that were not good, and judgments by which they could not live; 26 and I pronounced them unclean because of their ritual gifts, in that they caused all [t]their firstborn to pass (DZ)through the fire, that I might make them desolate and that they (EA)might know that I am the Lord.” ’
27 “Therefore, son of man, speak to the house of Israel, and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “In this too your fathers have (EB)blasphemed Me, by being unfaithful to Me. 28 When I brought them into the land concerning which I had raised My hand in an oath to give them, and (EC)they saw all the high hills and all the thick trees, there they offered their sacrifices and provoked Me with their offerings. There they also sent up their (ED)sweet aroma and poured out their drink offerings. 29 Then I said to them, ‘What is this [u]high place to which you go?’ So its name is called [v]Bamah to this day.” ’ 30 Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Are you defiling yourselves in the manner of your (EE)fathers, and committing harlotry according to their (EF)abominations? 31 For when you offer (EG)your gifts and make your sons pass through the fire, you defile yourselves with all your idols, even to this day. So shall I be inquired of by you, O house of Israel? As I live,” says the Lord God, “I will (EH)not be inquired of by you. 32 (EI)What you have in your mind shall never be, when you say, ‘We will be like the Gentiles, like the families in other countries, serving wood and stone.’
God Will Restore Israel
33 “As I live,” says the Lord God, “surely with a mighty hand, (EJ)with an outstretched arm, and with fury poured out, I will rule over you. 34 I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you are scattered, with a mighty hand, with an outstretched arm, and with fury poured out. 35 And I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there (EK)I will plead My case with you face to face. 36 (EL)Just as I pleaded My case with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so I will plead My case with you,” says the Lord God.
37 “I will make you (EM)pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the (EN)covenant; 38 (EO)I will purge the rebels from among you, and those who transgress against Me; I will bring them out of the country where they dwell, but (EP)they shall not enter the land of Israel. Then you will know that I am the Lord.
39 “As for you, O house of Israel,” thus says the Lord God: (EQ)“Go, serve every one of you his idols—and hereafter—if you will not obey Me; (ER)but profane My holy name no more with your gifts and your idols. 40 For (ES)on My holy mountain, on the mountain height of Israel,” says the Lord God, “there (ET)all the house of Israel, all of them in the land, shall serve Me; there (EU)I will accept them, and there I will require your offerings and the firstfruits of your [w]sacrifices, together with all your holy things. 41 I will accept you as a (EV)sweet aroma when I bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered; and I will be hallowed in you before the Gentiles. 42 (EW)Then you shall know that I am the Lord, (EX)when I bring you into the land of Israel, into the country for which I raised My hand in an oath to give to your fathers. 43 And (EY)there you shall remember your ways and all your doings with which you were defiled; and (EZ)you shall [x]loathe yourselves in your own sight because of all the evils that you have committed. 44 (FA)Then you shall know that I am the Lord, when I have dealt with you (FB)for My name’s sake, not according to your wicked ways nor according to your corrupt doings, O house of Israel,” says the Lord God.’ ”
Fire in the Forest
45 Furthermore the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 46 (FC)“Son of man, set your face toward the south; [y]preach against the south and prophesy against the forest land, the [z]South, 47 and say to the forest of the South, ‘Hear the word of the Lord! Thus says the Lord God: “Behold, (FD)I will kindle a fire in you, and it shall devour (FE)every green tree and every dry tree in you; the blazing flame shall not be quenched, and all faces (FF)from the south to the north shall be scorched by it. 48 All flesh shall see that I, the Lord, have kindled it; it shall not be quenched.” ’ ”
49 Then I said, “Ah, Lord God! They say of me, ‘Does he not speak (FG)parables?’ ”
- Ezekiel 17:7 So with LXX, Syr., Vg.; MT, Tg. one
- Ezekiel 17:8 Lit. a good field
- Ezekiel 17:17 Or siege wall
- Ezekiel 17:18 Took an oath
- Ezekiel 17:20 Lit. unfaithful act
- Ezekiel 17:21 So with MT, Vg.; many Heb. mss., Syr. choice men; Tg. mighty men; LXX omits All his fugitives
- Ezekiel 18:6 At the mountain shrines
- Ezekiel 18:8 Lent money at interest
- Ezekiel 18:8 justice
- Ezekiel 18:11 At the mountain shrines
- Ezekiel 18:15 At the mountain shrines
- Ezekiel 18:17 So with MT, Tg., Vg.; LXX iniquity (cf. v. 8)
- Ezekiel 19:7 LXX He stood in insolence; Tg. He destroyed its palaces; Vg. He learned to make widows
- Ezekiel 19:9 Or hooks
- Ezekiel 19:10 Lit. blood, so with MT, Syr., Vg.; LXX like a flower on a pomegranate tree; Tg. in your likeness
- Ezekiel 19:11 Or many branches
- Ezekiel 20:8 Lit. listen to
- Ezekiel 20:11 Lit. made known to
- Ezekiel 20:22 Refrained from judgment
- Ezekiel 20:26 Lit. that open the womb
- Ezekiel 20:29 Place for pagan worship
- Ezekiel 20:29 Lit. High Place
- Ezekiel 20:40 offerings
- Ezekiel 20:43 Or despise
- Ezekiel 20:46 proclaim, lit. drop
- Ezekiel 20:46 Heb. Negev