Ezekiel 1-39Amplified Bible (AMP)
The Vision of Four Figures
1 Now it came about [when I was] in my [a]thirtieth year [of life], on the fifth day of the fourth month, while I was among the exiles beside the River Chebar [in Babylonia], the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God. 2 (On the fifth of the month, which was in the fifth year of [b]King Jehoiachin’s captivity, 3 the word of the Lord came expressly to Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the [c]Chaldeans by the River [d]Chebar; and the hand of the Lord came upon him there.)
4 As I looked, I saw a stormy wind coming out of the north, a great cloud with fire flashing continually from it; and a brightness was around it, and in its core [there was] something like glowing [amber-colored] metal in the midst of the fire. 5 Within it there were figures resembling [e]four living beings. And this was their appearance: they had human form. 6 Each one had four faces and four wings. 7 Their legs were straight and the soles of their feet were like a calf’s hoof, and they sparkled and gleamed like shiny bronze. 8 Under their wings on their four sides they had human hands. As for the faces and wings of the four of them, 9 their wings touched one another; their faces did not turn when they moved, each went straight forward. 10 Regarding the [f]form and appearance of their faces: they [each] had the face of a man [in front], and each had the face of a lion on the right side, and the face of an ox on the left side; all four also had the face of an eagle [at the back of their heads]. 11 Such were their faces. Their wings were stretched out upward; two [wings] of each one were touching another [the wings of the beings on either side of it], and [the remaining] two [wings of each being] were covering their bodies. 12 And each went straight forward; wherever the spirit was about to go, they would go, without turning as they went. 13 Among the living beings there was something that looked like burning coals of fire, like torches moving back and forth among the living beings. The fire was bright, and lightning was flashing from the fire. 14 And the living beings moved rapidly back and forth like flashes of lightning.
15 Now as I looked at the living beings, I saw one wheel on the ground beside the living beings, for each of the four of them. 16 Regarding the appearance of the wheels and their construction: they gleamed like chrysolite (beryl, olivine); and the four were made alike. Their appearance and construction were a wheel [set at a right angle] within a wheel. 17 Whenever they moved, they went in any [one] of their four directions without turning as they moved. 18 Regarding their rims: they were so high that they were awesome and dreadful, and the rims of all four of them were full of eyes all around. 19 Whenever the living beings moved, the wheels moved with them; and when the living beings rose from the earth, the wheels rose also. 20 Wherever the spirit went, the beings went in that direction. And the wheels rose along with them; for the spirit or life of the living beings was in the wheels. 21 Whenever those went, these went; and whenever those came to a stop, these came to a stop; and whenever those rose from the earth, the wheels rose close beside them, for the spirit of the living beings was in the wheels.
Vision of Divine Glory
22 Now stretched over the heads of the living beings there was something like an expanse, looking like the terrible and awesome shimmer of icy crystal. 23 Under the expanse their wings were stretched out straight, one toward another. Every living being had two wings which covered its body on one side and on the other side. 24 As they moved, I also heard the sound of their wings like the sound of great [rushing] waters, like the voice of [g]the Almighty, the sound of tumult like the noise of an army camp. Whenever they came to a stop, they lowered their wings. 25 And there was a voice above the expanse that was over their heads; whenever they stopped, they lowered their wings.
26 Now above the expanse that was over their heads there was something resembling a throne, it appeared like [it was made of] sapphire or lapis lazuli; and [seated] on that which looked like a throne, high up, was a figure with the appearance of a man. 27 Now upward, from that which appeared to be His waist, I saw something like glowing metal that looked like it was filled with fire all around it; and downward, from that which appeared to be His waist, I saw something like fire; and there was a brightness and a remarkable radiance [like a halo] around Him. 28 As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the surrounding radiance. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory and brilliance of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell face downward and I heard a voice of One speaking.
The Prophet’s Call
2 Then He said to me, “Son of man, stand on your feet and I will speak to you.” 2 Then as He spoke to me the Spirit entered me and set me on my feet; and I heard Him speaking to me. 3 And He said to me, “I am sending you, son of man, to the children of Israel, to a rebellious people [in both the north and the south] that have rebelled against Me; they and their fathers have sinned and revolted against Me to this very day. 4 I am sending you to them who are stubborn and obstinate children, and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord [h]God.’ 5 As for them, whether they listen or refuse [to listen]—for they are a rebellious house—yet they will know and be fully aware of the fact that there has been a prophet among them. 6 And you, son of man, neither fear them nor fear their words; though briars and thorns are all around you and you sit among scorpions, neither fear their words nor be dismayed at their presence, for they are a rebellious house. 7 But you shall speak My words to them whether they will listen or refuse [to listen], for they are [most] rebellious.
8 “As for you, son of man, listen to what I say to you; do not be rebellious like that rebellious house; open your mouth and eat what I am giving you.” 9 Then I looked, and I saw a hand stretched out toward me; and behold, a scroll of a book was in it. 10 And He spread it before me, and it was written on the front and on the back, and written on it were [words of] lamentation (funeral songs) and mourning and woe.
3 He said to me, “Son of man, eat what you find [in this book]; eat this scroll, then go, speak to the house of Israel.” 2 So I opened my mouth, and He fed me the scroll. 3 He said to me, “Son of man, eat this scroll that I am giving you and fill your stomach with it.” So I ate it, and it was as sweet as honey in my mouth.
4 Then He said to me, “Son of man, go to the house of Israel and speak My words to them. 5 For you are not being sent to a people of unintelligible speech or difficult language, but to the house of Israel, 6 not to many peoples of unintelligible speech or difficult language, whose words you cannot understand. But I have sent you to them who should listen to you and pay attention to My message; 7 yet the house of Israel will not be willing to listen to you and obey you, since they are not willing to listen to Me and obey Me, for the entire house of Israel is stubborn and obstinate. 8 Behold, I have made your face as hard as their faces and your forehead as hard as their foreheads. 9 I have made your forehead like emery (diamond), harder than flint. Do not be afraid of them or be dismayed before them, though they are a rebellious house.” 10 Moreover, He said to me, “Son of man, receive into your heart all My words which I will speak to you and hear with your ears (listen closely). 11 Go to the [Jewish] exiles [in Babylon], to the children of your people, and speak to them, whether they listen or not, and tell them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’”
12 Then the Spirit lifted me up, and I heard a great rushing sound behind me, “Blessed be the glory of the Lord in His place [above the expanse].” 13 And then I heard the sound of the wings of the living beings as they touched one another and [I heard] the sound of the wheels beside them, a great rushing sound. 14 So the Spirit lifted me up and took me away, and I went embittered [by the sins of Israel] in the rage of my spirit; and the hand of the Lord was strong on me. 15 Then I came to the exiles who lived beside the River Chebar at Tel Abib. I sat there for seven days [in the place] where they were living, overwhelmed with astonishment [by my vision and the work before me].
16 At the end of seven days the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 17 “Son of man, I have appointed you as a watchman to the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from My mouth, warn them from Me. 18 When I say to the wicked, ‘You will certainly die,’ and you do not warn him or speak out to tell him to turn from his wicked way to save his life, that same evil man will die in his sin, but you will be responsible for his blood. 19 However, if you have warned the wicked and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his wicked way, he will die in his sin; but you have [i]freed yourself [from responsibility]. 20 Again, when a righteous man turns from his righteousness (right standing with God) and sins, and I place an obstacle before him, he will die; since you have not warned him, he will die in his sin, and the righteous deeds which he has done will not be remembered; but you will be responsible for his blood. 21 However, if you have warned the righteous man not to sin and he does not sin, he will surely live because he took warning; also you have [j]freed yourself [from responsibility].”
22 The hand of the Lord was on me there, and He said to me, “Arise, go out to the plain, and I will speak to you.” 23 So I got up and went out to the plain; and behold, the glory and brilliance of the Lord was standing there, like the glory I had seen by the River Chebar, and I fell face downward. 24 Then the Spirit entered me and made me stand on my feet; He spoke and said to me, “Go, shut yourself up in your house. 25 As for you, son of man, they will put ropes on you and bind you with them so that you cannot go out among them. 26 And I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you cannot talk and you cannot be a man who rebukes the people, for they are a rebellious house. 27 But when I speak with you, I will open your mouth and you will say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’ He who hears, let him hear; and he who refuses [to hear], let him refuse; for they are a rebellious house.
Siege of Jerusalem Predicted
4 “Now you, son of man, take a brick, place it before you and inscribe on it [a diagram of] the city of Jerusalem. 2 Then lay siege against it, build a siege wall, raise a ramp against it; set up [enemy] camps and place battering rams all around it. 3 Further, take an iron plate and place it as an iron wall between you and the city, and set your face toward it so that it is under siege, and besiege it. This is a sign to the house of Israel.
4 “Then lie down on your left side (toward the north) to bear [symbolically] the wickedness and punishment of the [k]house of Israel. You shall bear their wickedness and punishment for the number of days that you lie on your side. 5 For I have assigned you the years of their wickedness and punishment, according to the number of the days, three hundred and ninety days [representing three hundred and ninety years]; in this way you shall bear [symbolically] the wickedness and punishment of the house of Israel. 6 When you have completed these [days for Israel], lie down again, but on your right side (toward the south), and you shall bear the wickedness and punishment of the [l]house of Judah forty days. I have assigned you one day for each year. 7 Then you shall set your face toward the siege of Jerusalem with your arm bared and prophesy against it. 8 Now behold, I will put ropes on you so that you cannot turn from one side to the other until you have completed the days of your siege.
9 “But as for you, take wheat, barley, beans, lentils, millet, and spelt, and put them into one vessel and make them into bread for yourself. You shall eat it according to the number of the days that you lie on your side, three hundred and ninety days. 10 The food you eat each day shall be [measured] by weight, [m]twenty shekels, to be eaten daily at a set time. 11 You shall drink water by measure also, [n]the sixth part of a hin; you shall drink daily at a set time. 12 You shall eat your food as barley cakes, having baked it in their sight over human dung.” 13 Then the Lord said, “Thus the children of Israel will eat their bread unclean and defiled among the nations where I will banish them.” 14 But I said, “Ah, Lord God! Behold (hear me), I have never been defiled; for from my youth until now I have never eaten what died on its own or was torn by beasts, nor has any unclean meat ever entered my mouth.” 15 Then He said to me, “See, I will let you use cow’s dung instead of human dung over which you shall prepare your food.” 16 Moreover, He said to me, “Son of man, behold (listen carefully), I am going to break the staff of bread [that supports life] in Jerusalem; and they shall eat bread [rationed] by weight and [eat it] with anxiety and fear, and drink water by measure and [drink it] in horror [of the impending starvation], 17 because bread and water will be scarce; and they will look at one another in dismay and waste away [in punishment] for their wickedness.
Jerusalem’s Desolation Foretold
5 “And you [Ezekiel], son of man, take a sharp sword and use it as a barber’s razor and shave your head and your beard. Then take scales for weighing and divide the hair [into three parts]. 2 You shall burn one third with fire in the center of the city, when the days of the siege are completed. Then you shall take one third and strike it with the sword all around the city, and one third you shall scatter to the wind; and I will unsheathe a sword behind them. 3 Also take some of them and bind them in the edges of your robes. 4 Again take some hair and throw them into the fire and burn them in the fire; from it a fire will spread to all the house of Israel.
5 “Thus says the Lord God, ‘This is Jerusalem; I have set her in the center of the nations, and countries are around her. 6 And she has rebelled against My ordinances more wickedly than the [pagan] nations and against My statutes more than the countries that are around her; for Israel has rejected My ordinances and has not walked in My statutes.’ 7 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Because you have more turmoil than the nations which surround you and have not walked in My statutes, nor kept My ordinances, nor observed the ordinances of the nations which surround you,’ 8 therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I, I Myself, am against you, and I will execute judgments among you in the sight of the nations. 9 And because of all your abominations, I will do among you that which I have not done, and the like of which I will not do again. 10 Therefore, fathers will eat their sons among you, and sons will eat their fathers; and I will execute judgments on you and I will scatter to all the winds the remnant of you. 11 So, as I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘surely, because you have defiled My sanctuary with all your detestable idols and with all your abominations, therefore I will also diminish you and withdraw, and My eye will have no pity and I will not spare [you]. 12 One third of you will die of virulent disease or be consumed by famine among you; one third will fall by the sword around you; and one third I will scatter to all the winds, and I will unsheathe a sword behind them.
13 ‘Thus My anger will come to an end and I will satisfy My wrath on them, and I will be appeased; then they will know [without any doubt] that I the Lord have spoken in My zeal when I have spent My wrath on them. 14 Moreover, I will make you a desolation and a disgrace among the nations which surround you and in the sight of all who pass by. 15 So it will be a disgrace, a taunt, a warning and an object of horror to the [pagan] nations who surround you when I execute judgments against you in anger and in wrath and in raging reprimands—I, the Lord, have spoken. 16 When I send against them the deadly arrows of hunger which were for the destruction of those whom I will send to destroy you, then I will increase the famine upon you and break your staff of bread. 17 Further, I will send against you hunger and wild beasts, and they will bereave you of children; virulent disease and bloodshed also will pass through you, and I will bring the sword on you. I, the Lord, have spoken.’”
Idolatrous Worship Denounced
6 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, set your face against the mountains of Israel and prophesy against them, 3 and say, ‘You mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord God! Thus says the Lord God to the mountains and the hills, to the ravines and the valleys: “Behold, I Myself am going to bring a sword on you, and I will destroy your high places [of idolatrous worship], 4 and your altars will become deserted and your pillars for sun-worship will be smashed in pieces; and I will throw down your slain in front of your idols [that cannot bring them back to life]. 5 I will also lay the dead bodies of the children of Israel in front of their [Canaanite] idols; and I will scatter your bones all around your altars. 6 Everywhere you live, the cities will become waste and the high places will become deserted, so that your altars may bear their guilt and become deserted, your idols may be broken and destroyed, your incense altars [for sun-worship] may be cut down, and your works may be blotted out. 7 The slain will fall among you, then you shall know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
8 “Yet I will leave some of you alive [a remnant], for you will have some who escaped the sword among the nations when you are scattered throughout the countries. 9 Then those of you who escape will remember Me among the nations to which they will be exiled, how I have been broken by their lewdness and their adulterous hearts which have turned away from Me, and by their eyes which lust after their idols; and they will loathe themselves for the evils which they have committed, for all their repulsive acts. 10 Then they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord; I have not said in vain that I would bring this disaster [as punishment] on them.”’
11 “Thus says the Lord God, ‘Strike with your fist, stamp with your foot and say, “Alas, because of all the evil atrocities of the house of Israel, which will fall by sword, by famine, and by virulent disease! 12 He who is far away will die of the virulent disease, and he who is near will fall by the sword, and he who remains and is besieged will die by the famine. Thus I will spend My wrath on them. 13 Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord, when their slain are among their idols around their altars, on every high hill, on all the tops of the mountains, under every leafy tree and under every oak with thick branches, the places where they offered sweet incense and a soothing aroma to all their idols. 14 And I will stretch out My hand against them and make the land a more desolate waste than the wilderness toward Diblah [the Moabite city], throughout all the places where they live; and they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”’”
Punishment for Wickedness Foretold
7 Moreover, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Also, son of man, thus says the Lord God to the land of Israel, ‘An end! The end is coming on the four corners of the land. 3 Now the end is upon you, and I will send My anger against you and will judge you in accordance with your ways and I will bring [retribution for] all your abominations upon you. 4 For My eye will have no pity on you, nor will I spare you, but I will repay you for your evil ways, while your abominations are among you; and you will know (recognize, understand) [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.’
5 “Thus says the Lord God, ‘A disaster is coming, [one so destructive and injurious, so sudden and violent, that it stands alone,] a unique disaster, look it is coming! 6 An end is coming; the end has come! It has awakened against you. Look, it has come! 7 Your doom has come to you, O inhabitant of the land; the time has come, the day is near—tumult rather than joyful shouting on the mountains. 8 Now I will soon pour out My wrath on you and spend My anger against you, and I will judge you in accordance with your ways and will repay you [with punishment] for all your outrageous acts. 9 My eye will show no pity nor will I spare [you]. I will repay you in accordance with your ways, while your abominations are in your midst; then you will know and understand that it is I, the Lord, who strikes you.
10 ‘Behold, the day! Behold, it is coming! Your doom has gone forth, the rod has blossomed, arrogance has sprouted. 11 Violence has grown into a rod of wickedness; none of them (Israel) will remain, none of their people, none of their wealth, nor anything eminent among them. 12 The time has come, the day has arrived. Let not the buyer rejoice nor the seller mourn, for wrath is against all their multitude [of people]. 13 For the seller will not regain and return to [o]what he sold, even were they yet alive; for the vision [of punishment] regarding all the multitude [of people] will not be turned back, nor will any one of them sustain his life because of his sin.
14 ‘They have blown the trumpet and have made everything ready, but no one is going to the battle, for My wrath is against all their multitude [of people]. 15 The sword is outside and virulent disease and famine are within. He who is in the field will die by the sword, and famine and disease will devour those in the city. 16 Even when their survivors escape, they will be on the mountains like doves of the valleys, all of them moaning, each over his [punishment for] sin. 17 All hands will hang limp and all knees will be as weak as water. 18 They will also cover themselves with sackcloth; horror will overwhelm them, and shame will be on all faces and baldness on all their heads [as evidence of grief]. 19 They will fling their silver into the streets and their gold will be [discarded] like something unclean; their silver and their gold shall not be able to save them in the day of the wrath of the Lord. These [things] cannot satisfy their soul nor fill their stomachs, for they have become their stumbling block and source of sin.
The Temple Profaned
20 As for the beauty of [gold for] ornaments, they turned it to pride and from it made the images of their repulsive things (idols) and of their vile things. Therefore I will make it an unclean thing to them. 21 I will give it into the hands of strangers (Babylonians) as plunder and to the wicked of the earth as spoil, and they shall profane it. 22 I will also turn My face away from them, and they will desecrate My secret treasure (the Jerusalem temple); and robbers will enter [irreverently] into it (the Holy of Holies) and violate it.
23 ‘Prepare the chain [for imprisonment], for the land is full of bloody crimes [murders committed under the pretense of civil justice] and the city is full of violence. 24 Therefore, I will bring the worst of the [Gentile] nations, and they will take possession of their houses [those of the people of Judah]; I will also silence their pride, and their holy places will be profaned. 25 When anguish comes, they [of Judah] shall seek peace, but there will be none. 26 Disaster will come upon disaster and rumor will be heaped on rumor; they will seek a vision from a prophet, but the law and guidance will be lost from the priest and [wise] counsel [will cease] from the elders. 27 The king [of Judah] will mourn and the prince (Zedekiah) will be clothed with [garments of] despair and anguish, and the hands of the people of the land shall tremble [in terror]. I will deal with them in accordance with their conduct, and by their judgments I will judge them. And they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.’”
Vision of Repulsive Acts in Jerusalem
8 It came about in the [p]sixth year [of the captivity of King Jehoiachin], on the fifth day of the sixth month, as I sat in my house [near Babylon] with the elders of Judah sitting before me, that the hand of the Lord [q]God fell on me there. 2 Then I looked, and behold, a likeness [of a man] with the appearance of fire; from His [r]loins downward He was like fire, and from His loins upward He had the appearance of brightness, like gleaming metal (bronze). 3 He stretched out the form of a hand and took me by a lock of hair on my head; and the Spirit lifted me up between earth and heaven and brought me in the visions of God to Jerusalem, to the entrance of the north gate of the inner courtyard, where the seat of the idol (image) of [s]jealousy, which provokes to jealousy, was located. 4 And behold, the glory and brilliance of the God of Israel [who had loved and chosen them] was there, like the vision which I saw in the plain.
5 Then He said to me, “Son of man, now raise your eyes toward the north.” So I looked toward the north, and behold, to the north of the altar gate was this idol (image) of jealousy at the entrance. 6 Furthermore, He said to me, “Son of man, do you see what they are doing, the great repulsive acts which the house of Israel is committing here, to drive Me far away from My sanctuary? But you will again see greater repulsive acts.”
7 Then He brought me to the entrance of the courtyard; and when I looked, behold, [there was] a hole in the wall. 8 He said to me, “Son of man, now dig into the wall.” And when I had dug into the wall, behold, there was an entrance. 9 And He said to me, “Go in and see the wicked, repulsive acts that they are committing here.” 10 So I entered and looked, and saw every kind of creeping things and beasts and loathsome things, and all the idols of the house of Israel, carved all around on the wall. 11 Standing before these [images] were seventy elders of the house of Israel, and among them stood Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan [the scribe], each man with his censer in his hand and a thick and fragrant cloud of incense was rising [as they prayed to these gods]. 12 Then He said to me, “Son of man, do you see what the elders of the house of Israel do in the dark, each man in his [secret] room of carved images? For they say, ‘The Lord does not see us; the Lord has abandoned the land.’” 13 He also said to me, “Yet again you will see even greater repulsive acts which they are committing.”
14 Then He brought me to the entrance of the north gate of the Lord’s house; and behold, women were sitting there weeping for [t]Tammuz. 15 He said to me, “Do you see this, son of man? Yet you will see still greater repulsive acts than these [that they are committing].”
16 So He brought me to the inner court of the Lord’s house. And behold, at the entrance to the temple of the Lord, between the porch (vestibule, portico) and the [bronze] altar, were about twenty-five men with their backs to the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east; and they were bowing down toward the east and worshiping the sun. 17 He said to me, “Do you see this, son of man? Is it too slight a thing for the house of Judah to commit the repulsive acts which they have committed here, that they have filled the land with violence and repeatedly provoked Me to anger? And behold, they are putting the [u]branch to their nose. 18 Therefore, I indeed will deal in wrath. My eye will have no pity nor will I spare [them]; and though they cry loudly in My ears, yet I will not listen to them.”
The Vision of Slaughter
9 Then [in my vision] I heard Him cry out with a thunderous voice, saying, “Approach now, executioners of the city, each with his weapon of destruction in his hand.” 2 Behold, six men [angelic beings] came from the direction of the Upper Gate, which faces north, each with his battle-axe in his hand; and among them was a [v]certain man clothed in linen, with a scribe’s writing case at his side. They entered and stood beside the bronze altar.
3 Then the [[w]Shekinah] glory and brilliance of the God of Israel (the cloud) [x]went up from the cherubim on which it had rested, to [stand above] the threshold of the [Lord’s] temple. And the Lord called to the man clothed with linen, who had the scribe’s writing case at his side. 4 The Lord said to him, “Go through the midst of the city, throughout all of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh [in distress] and grieve over all the repulsive acts which are being committed in it.” 5 But to the others I heard Him say, “Follow him [the man with the scribe’s writing case] throughout the city and strike; do not let your eyes have pity and do not spare [anyone]. 6 Utterly slay old men, young men, maidens, little children, and women; but do not touch or go near anyone on whom is the mark. Begin at My sanctuary.” So they began with the old men who were in front of the temple [who did not have the Lord’s mark on their foreheads]. 7 And He said to the executioners, “Defile the temple and fill its courtyards with the dead. Go out!” So they went out and struck down the people in the city. 8 As they were executing them and I alone was left, I fell face downward and cried out, “Alas, Lord God! Will You destroy all that is left of Israel [the whole remnant] by pouring out Your wrath and indignation on Jerusalem?”
9 Then He said to me, “The wickedness (guilt) of the house of Israel and Judah is extremely great; the land is full of blood and the city is full of perversion and injustice; for they say, ‘The Lord has abandoned the land; the Lord does not see [what we are doing].’ 10 But as for Me, My eye will have no pity, nor will I spare, but I will bring their [wicked] conduct upon their [own] heads.”
11 Then behold, the man clothed in linen, who had the scribe’s writing case at his side, reported, “I have done just as You have commanded me.”
Vision of God’s Glory Departing from the Temple
10 Then I looked, and behold, in the expanse (firmament) that was over the heads of the cherubim there appeared something [glorious and brilliant] above them looking like a [huge] sapphire stone, formed to resemble a throne. 2 And the Lord spoke to the man (seventh angel) clothed in linen and said, “Go between the whirling wheels under the cherubim; fill your hands with coals of fire from between the cherubim and scatter them over the city.” And he entered as I watched.
3 Now the cherubim were standing on the right side of the temple when the man entered; and a cloud [the Shekinah glory of God] filled the inner courtyard. 4 Then the glory and brilliance of the Lord moved upward from the cherubim to [rest over] the threshold of the temple; and the temple was filled with the cloud and the courtyard was filled with the brightness of the Lord’s glory. 5 And the sound of the wings of the cherubim was heard [even] as far as the outer courtyard, like the voice of [y]God Almighty when He speaks.
6 It came about when He commanded the man clothed in linen, saying, “Take fire from between the whirling wheels, from between the cherubim,” the man entered and stood beside a wheel. 7 Then a cherub stretched out his hand from between the cherubim to the fire that was between [the four of] them, and took some [of it] and put it into the hands of the man clothed in linen, who took it and departed. 8 Beneath their wings the cherubim seemed to have [something in] the form of a man’s hand.
9 Then I looked and behold, [there were] four wheels beside the cherubim, one wheel beside one cherub and another wheel beside each other cherub; and the appearance of the wheels was like a sparkling Tarshish stone (beryl). 10 As for their appearance, all four looked alike, as if one wheel were within another wheel. 11 When they moved, they went in any of their four directions without turning as they went; but they followed in the direction which they faced, without turning as they went. 12 Their whole body, their backs, their hands, their wings, and the wheels were full of eyes all around, even the wheels belonging to all four of them. 13 Regarding the wheels [attached to them], I heard them called, “the whirling (rolling, revolving) wheels.” 14 And each one had four faces: the first face was the face of the [z]cherub, the second the face of a man, the third the face of a lion, and the fourth the face of an eagle.
15 Then the cherubim rose upward. They are the [same four] living beings [regarded as one] that I saw by the River Chebar [in Babylonia]. 16 Now when the cherubim moved, the wheels would go beside them; and when the cherubim lifted up their wings to rise from the earth, the wheels would remain beside them. 17 When the cherubim stood still, the wheels would stand still; and when they rose upward, the wheels would rise with them, for the spirit of the living beings was in these [wheels].
18 Then the [Shekinah] glory of the Lord departed from the threshold of the temple and rested over the cherubim. 19 As I looked at them, the cherubim lifted up their wings and rose up from the earth, they departed with the wheels beside them; and they stood still at the entrance of the east gate of the house of the Lord, and the glory and brilliance of the God of Israel hovered over them.
20 These are the living beings that I saw beneath the God of Israel by the River Chebar; and I knew that they were cherubim. 21 Each one had four faces and each one had four wings, and beneath their wings was the form of human hands. 22 As for the likeness of their faces, they were the same faces whose appearance I had seen by the River Chebar. Each one went straight forward.
Evil Rulers to Be Judged
11 Moreover, the Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the gate of the Lord’s house, which faced eastward. And behold, at the entrance of the gate there were twenty-five men; and I saw among them Jaazaniah the son of Azzur and Pelatiah the son of Benaiah, princes of the people. 2 Then the Spirit said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who devise evil and give wicked advice in this city, 3 who say, ‘Is not the time near to build houses? This city is [secure just like] the pot and we are the meat [in it].’ 4 Therefore, prophesy against them; prophesy, son of man!”
5 Then the Spirit of the Lord fell upon me, and He said to me, “Say, ‘Thus says the Lord, “This is what you think, house of Israel, for I know your thoughts. 6 You have multiplied your slain in this city, and you have filled its streets with the corpses [of righteous men].” 7 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, “Your dead whom you have laid in the midst of your city are the meat and this city is the pot; but I shall force you out of [the security of] it. 8 You have feared the sword; so I will bring a sword upon you,” says the Lord God. 9 “And I will bring you out of the midst of the city and hand you over to strangers and execute judgment against you. 10 You will fall by the sword; I will judge and punish you [in front of your neighbors] at the border of [the land of] Israel; and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord. 11 This city will not be a pot for you, nor will you be meat [safe] in it, but I will judge you at the border of Israel. 12 And you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord; for you have not walked in My statutes nor have you executed My ordinances, but you have acted in accordance with the ordinances of the nations around you.”’”
13 Now it came about while I was prophesying, that Pelatiah the son of Benaiah died. Then I fell face downward and cried out loudly, “Alas, Lord God! Will You bring the remnant of Israel to a complete end?”
Promise of Restoration
14 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 15 “Son of man, your brothers, your relatives, your fellow exiles and the whole house of Israel, all of them, are those to whom the [present] inhabitants of Jerusalem have said, ‘Go far away from the Lord; this land has been given to us as a possession.’ 16 Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Though I had removed Israel far away among the nations and though I had scattered them among the countries, yet I have been a sanctuary for them for a little while in the countries to which they had gone.”’ 17 Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “I will gather you from the peoples and assemble you out of the countries where you have been scattered, and I will give [back] to you the land of Israel.”’ 18 When they return there, they will remove from it all [traces of] its detestable things and all its repulsive things (remnants of paganism). 19 And I will give them one heart [a new heart], and put a new spirit within them. I will take from them the heart of stone, and will give them a heart of flesh [that is responsive to My touch], 20 that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and do them. Then they shall be My people, and I will be their God. 21 But as for those whose heart longs for and follows after their detestable things and their repulsive things [associated with idolatry], on their own head I will repay [them in full for] their [vile] conduct,” says the Lord God.
22 Then the cherubim lifted up their wings with the wheels beside them, and the [Shekinah] glory of the God of Israel hovered over them. 23 Then the glory and brilliance of the Lord went up from the midst of the city and paused over the mountain, [the Mount of Olives] which is east of the city. 24 And the Spirit lifted me up and brought me in a vision by the Spirit of God to the exiles in Chaldea (Babylonia). Then the vision that I had seen left me. 25 Then I told the exiles everything that the Lord had shown me.
Ezekiel Prepares for Exile
12 The word of the Lord also came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, you live among a rebellious house, who have eyes to see but do not see, who have ears to hear but do not hear; for they are a rebellious people. 3 Therefore, son of man, prepare your belongings for exile, and move into exile during the day when they will see you; even go into exile from your place to another place as they watch. Perhaps they will understand even though they are a rebellious people. 4 Bring your [aa]provisions and supplies out during the day as they watch, as provisions and supplies for [going into] exile. Then you shall go out at evening as they watch, as those going into exile. 5 Dig through the wall as they watch and go out through the hole. 6 As they look on, load the provisions and supplies on your shoulder and carry it out in the dark. You shall cover your face so that you cannot see the land, for I have set you as a sign to the house of Israel.”
7 I did as I had been commanded. I brought out my provisions and supplies during the day, like the provisions and supplies of an exile, and in the evening I dug through the wall with my hands. I brought out my provisions and supplies in the dark, carrying it on my shoulder as they watched.
8 In the morning the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 9 “Son of man, has not the house of Israel, the rebellious house, asked you, ‘What you are doing?’ 10 Say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “This [ab]oracle (a burden to be carried) concerns the prince (Zedekiah) in Jerusalem as well as all the house of Israel who are there.”’ 11 Say, ‘I am a sign to you. As I have done, so it will be done to them; they will go into exile, into captivity.’ 12 The prince who is among them will load his provisions and supplies on his shoulder in the dark and go out. They will dig a hole through the wall to go out. He will cover his face so that he cannot see the land with his eyes. 13 I will also spread My net over him, and he will be caught in My snare. And I will bring him to Babylon, to the land of the [ac]Chaldeans; yet he will [ad]not see it, though he will die there. 14 I will scatter to every wind all who are around him, his helpers and all his troops; and I will draw out a sword after them. 15 So they will know and understand fully that I am the Lord when I scatter them among the nations and disperse them among the [pagan] countries. 16 But I will leave a few [survivors] who will escape the sword, the famine, and the virulent disease, that they may confess all their repulsive (idolatrous) acts among the nations where they go, and may know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”
17 Moreover, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 18 “Son of man, eat your bread with anxiety, and drink your water with trembling and with fear. 19 Then say to the people of the land, ‘Thus says the Lord God concerning the inhabitants of Jerusalem in the land of Israel, “They will eat their bread with anxiety and drink their water with horror, because their land will be stripped and looted of its fullness because of the violence of all those who live in it. 20 The cities that are inhabited will be in ruins and the land will be deserted; and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”’”
21 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 22 “Son of man, what is this proverb that you have in the land of Israel, saying, ‘The days are long and every vision fails’? 23 Therefore tell them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “I will put an end to this proverb, and they will no longer use it as a proverb in Israel.” But say to them, “The days draw near as well as the fulfillment of every vision. 24 For there will no longer be any false and empty vision or flattering divination within the house of Israel. 25 For I the Lord will speak, and whatever word I speak will be accomplished. It will no longer be delayed, for in your days, O rebellious house, I will speak the word and I will fulfill it,” says the Lord God.’”
26 Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 27 “Son of man, behold, the house of Israel is saying, ‘The vision that Ezekiel sees is for many years from now, and he prophesies of the times that are far off.’ 28 Therefore say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “None of My words will be delayed any longer. Whatever word I speak will be fulfilled completely,”’” says the Lord God.
False Prophets Condemned
13 And the word of the Lord came to me saying, 2 “Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel who prophesy, and say to those who prophesy from their own inspiration, ‘Hear the word of the Lord! 3 Thus says the Lord God, “Woe (judgment is coming) to the foolish prophets who are following their own spirit [claiming to have seen things] but have [in fact] seen nothing. 4 O Israel, your prophets have been like [ae]foxes among the ruins. 5 You have not gone up into the gaps or breaches, nor built the wall around the house of Israel that it might stand in the battle on the day of the Lord. 6 They have seen falsehood and lying divination, saying, ‘The Lord says,’ but the Lord has not sent them. Yet they hope and make men to hope for the confirmation of their word. 7 Did you not see (make up) a false vision and speak a lying divination when you said, ‘The Lord declares,’ but it is not I who have spoken?”’”
8 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, “Because you have spoken empty and delusive words and have seen lies, therefore behold, I am against you,” says the Lord God. 9 “So My hand will be against the [counterfeit] prophets who see (make up) empty and delusive visions and who give lying prophecies. They will have no place in the [secret] council of My people, nor will they be recorded in the register of the house of Israel, nor will they enter into the land of Israel, that you may know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord God. 10 It is definitely because they have seduced My people, saying, ‘Peace,’ when there is no peace, and because when one builds a [flimsy] wall, behold, these [lying] prophets plaster it over with whitewash; 11 so tell those who plaster it with whitewash, that it will fall! A flooding rain [of judgment] will come, and you, O [great] hailstones, will fall; and a violent wind will tear the wall apart. 12 Behold, when the wall has fallen, will you not be asked, ‘Where is the coating with which you [prophets] plastered it?’” 13 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, “I will make a violent wind break out in My wrath, and there will be in My anger an overwhelming rain and great hailstones to destroy [that wall] in wrath. 14 So I will tear down the wall which you have plastered with whitewash and bring it down to the ground, so that its foundations will be exposed; when it falls, you will perish in its midst. And you shall know and understand fully that I am the Lord. 15 Thus I will expend My wrath on the wall and on those who have plastered it with whitewash and I will say to you, ‘The wall is gone and its plasterers are gone, 16 along with the [false] prophets of Israel who prophesy [deceitfully] to Jerusalem, and who see [false] visions of peace for her when there is no peace,’ says the Lord God.
17 “Now you, son of man, set your face against the daughters of your people who are prophesying out of [the wishful thinking of] their own mind (inspiration). Prophesy against them 18 and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Woe to the women who fasten magic (protective) charms on all wrists and make veils for the heads of those of every stature to capture [human] lives! Will you capture the lives of My people but keep your own? 19 You have profaned Me among My people [in payment] for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, killing people who should not die and giving [a guarantee of] life to those who should not live, because of your lies to My people who pay attention to lies.”’”
20 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am against your magic bands [and veils] by which you hunt [human] lives as birds and I will tear them from your arms; and I will let the lives you hunt go free, even those lives whom you hunt as birds. 21 I will also tear off your [pagan] veils and rescue My people from your hands, and they will no longer be in your grip to be hunted and trapped. Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord. 22 Because you disheartened the righteous with falsehood when I did not cause him grief, but have encouraged the wicked not to turn from his wicked way and preserve his life, 23 therefore, you women will no longer see false visions or practice divinations, and I will rescue My people from your hand. Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”
Idolatrous Elders Condemned
14 Then certain of the elders of Israel came to me [seeking an oracle from God] and sat down before me. 2 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 3 “Son of man, these men have set up [and honored] their idols in their hearts and have put right before their faces the [vile] stumbling block of their wickedness and guilt; should I [permit Myself to] be consulted by them at all? 4 Therefore speak to them and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Any man of the house of Israel who takes his idols [of rebellion] into his heart, and puts the [vile] stumbling block of his wickedness and guilt [images of silver and gold] before his face, and yet comes to the prophet [to ask of him], I the Lord will answer him, [but I will answer him] in accordance with the number of his idols, 5 in order that I may take hold of the heart (mind) of the house of Israel who are all estranged from Me because of their idols.”’
6 “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Repent and turn away from your idols and turn your faces away from all your disgusting and vile acts. 7 For anyone of the house of Israel or among the strangers who immigrate to Israel who separates himself from Me, taking his idols into his heart, and puts right before his face the [vile] stumbling block of his wickedness and guilt, and [then] comes to the prophet to ask of Me for himself, I the Lord will answer him Myself. 8 I will set My face against that man [that hypocrite] and will make him a [af]sign and a proverb, and I will cut him off from among My people; and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
9 “But if the prophet [who speaks without My authority] is enticed to speak a word [of his own], it is I the Lord who have caused that prophet [to speak falsely to please the inquirer, thus allowing himself to be a party to the inquirer’s sin], and I will stretch out My hand against him and destroy him from among My people Israel. 10 They [both] will bear the punishment of their wickedness; the sin of the [counterfeit] prophet will be the same as the sin of the [hypocritical] inquirer, 11 so that the house of Israel may no longer drift away from Me and no longer defile themselves with all their transgressions, but they will be My people, and I will be their God,”’ says the Lord God.”
The City Will Not Be Spared
12 The word of the Lord came [again] to me, saying, 13 “Son of man, if a land sins against Me by committing unfaithfulness, and I stretch out My hand against it and destroy its source of bread and send famine on it and cut off from it both man and animal, 14 even if these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job were in that land, by their own righteousness (right standing with God) they could only save (deliver) themselves,” says the Lord God. 15 “If I were to cause predatory beasts to pass through the land and they ravaged it and depopulated it of children, and it became desolate so that no one would pass through because of the predators, 16 though these three men were in the land, as I live,” says the Lord God, “they could not save either their sons or their daughters. They alone would be saved, but the land would be desolate (ruined, deserted). 17 Or if I were to bring a sword on that land and say, ‘Let a sword go through the land and cut off man and animal from it,’ 18 even though these three men were in the land, as I live,” says the Lord God, “they could not save either their sons or their daughters, but they alone would be saved. 19 Or if I should send a virulent disease into that land and pour out My wrath in blood on it to cut off man and animal from it, 20 even though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in the land, as I live,” says the Lord God, “they could not save either their son or their daughter; they would save only themselves by their righteousness [that is, their right-standing with God—their moral and spiritual integrity].”
21 For thus says the Lord God, “How much more when I send My four severe judgments against Jerusalem—sword, famine, predatory beasts, and virulent disease—to cut off man and animal from it! 22 Yet, behold, survivors will be left in it [escaping the judgments], both sons and daughters. Listen carefully, they are going to come out to you [in Babylon] and you will see their [wicked] conduct and [despicable] actions; then you will be at peace in regard to the disaster which I have brought against Jerusalem for everything which I have brought on it [has been deserved]. 23 Then they will reassure [ag]you [in regard to the appropriateness of the judgments] when you see their [heinous] conduct and actions, for you will know that I have not done without cause whatever I did to it,” declares the Lord God.
Jerusalem like a Useless Vine
15 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, how is the wood of the grapevine (Israel) better than any wood of a branch which is among the trees of the forest? 3 Can wood be taken from it to make any object? Or can men take a peg from it on which to hang any vessel? 4 If it has been thrown into the fire for fuel, and the fire has consumed both of its ends and the middle section has been charred, is it suitable or useful for anything? 5 Notice this, even when it was complete, it was not useful and was not made into anything. How much less, after the fire has burned [part of] it and [the remainder of] it is charred, can it still be made into anything? 6 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Like the wood of the grapevine among the trees of the forest, which I have given to the fire for fuel, so have I given up the people of Jerusalem; 7 and I set My face against them. Though they have come out of the fire, yet the fire will consume them. Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord, when I set My face against them. 8 I will make the land desolate (ruined, deserted), because they have acted unfaithfully [through their idolatry],’ says the Lord God.”
God’s Grace to Unfaithful Jerusalem
16 Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, make Jerusalem understand [the heinous and vile nature of] her repulsive (idolatrous) acts 3 and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God to Jerusalem (all of Israel), “Your [spiritual] origin and your birth are from the land of the Canaanite; your [spiritual] father was an [ah]Amorite and your [spiritual] mother a Hittite. 4 And as for your birth, on the day you were born your navel cord was not cut, nor were you washed with water for cleansing, nor were you rubbed with salt or even wrapped in cloths. 5 No eye looked with pity on you to do any of these things for you, to have compassion on you; but you were thrown out in the open field, for you were loathed on the day that you were born.
6 “When I passed by you and saw you squirming in your [newborn] blood, I said to you while you were there in your blood, ‘Live!’ Yes, I said to you while you were there in your blood, ‘Live!’ 7 I made you (Israel) multiply like plants [which grow] in the field, and you grew up and became tall and you reached the age for [wearing] fine jewelry; your breasts were formed and your hair had grown, yet you were naked and bare.
8 “Then I passed by you [again] and looked on you; behold, you were maturing and at the time for love, and I spread My skirt over you and covered your nakedness. Yes, I swore [an oath] to you and entered into a covenant with you,” says the Lord God, “and you became Mine.” 9 “Then I washed you with water; yes, I [thoroughly] washed away from you the [clinging] blood and anointed you with oil. 10 I also clothed you with embroidered cloth and put sandals of [ai]porpoise skin on your feet; and I wrapped you with fine linen and covered you with silk. 11 I adorned you with ornaments and I put bracelets on your wrists and a necklace around your neck. 12 I also put a ring in your nostril and earrings in your ears and a beautiful crown on your head. 13 Thus you were adorned with gold and silver, and your dress was [made] of fine linen and silk and embroidered cloth. You ate fine flour and honey and oil; so you were extremely beautiful and you advanced and prospered into royalty. 14 Then your fame went out among the nations on account of your beauty, for it was perfect because of My majesty and splendor which I bestowed on you,” says the Lord God.
15 “But you trusted in and relied on your beauty and prostituted yourself [in idolatry and its debauched rituals] because of your fame, and you poured out your immoralities on every [willing] passer-by and your beauty was his [as you worshiped the idols of the Gentile nations]. 16 You took some of your clothes and made for yourself [decorated] high places and shrines of various colors and prostituted yourself on them—things which should never have come about and taken place. 17 You also took your beautiful jewels and beautiful vessels made of My gold and My silver, which I had given you, and made for yourself images of men so that you could prostitute yourself with them; 18 and you took your embroidered clothing and covered them, and offered My oil and My incense before them. 19 Also My bread which I gave you, [made from the] fine flour and oil and honey with which I fed you, you even offered it before idols [no better than cow dung] as a sweet and soothing aroma; so it happened,” says the Lord God. 20 “Moreover, you took your sons and your daughters whom you had borne to Me, and you destroyed them as sacrifices [to your man-made gods]. Were your gross immoralities so small a matter? 21 You slaughtered My children and offered them up to [worthless] idols, forcing them to pass through the [hideousness of the] fire. 22 And in all your repulsive acts and prostitutions (idolatrous immoralities) you did not [pause to] remember the days of your youth, when you were naked and bare, squirming in your [newborn] blood.
23 “Then it came about after all your wickedness (‘Woe, woe to you!’ says the Lord God), 24 that you built yourself an [aj]altar for prostitution and made yourself a high place [for ritual prostitution] in every square [of Jerusalem]. 25 At the beginning of every street you built your high place and made your beauty repulsive; and you offered your body to every passer-by and multiplied your obscene immorality. 26 You also prostituted yourself with the Egyptians, your lustful neighbors [by embracing their pagan rituals], and you multiplied your obscene immorality to provoke Me to anger. 27 Behold now [listen very carefully], I have stretched out My hand against you, reduced your portion, and handed you over to the desire of those who hate you, the daughters of the Philistines, who are ashamed of your infamous behavior. 28 You prostituted yourself with the Assyrians because you were not satisfied; you prostituted yourself with them and still were not satisfied. 29 Moreover, you increased your obscene immorality with the land of tradesmen, Chaldea (Babylonia), and yet even with this you were not satisfied.”’”
30 “How weakened by longing and lust is your heart (mind),” says the Lord God, “while you do all these things, the actions of a bold and brazen prostitute. 31 When you built your shrine altar for prostitution at the beginning of every street and made your high place in every public square, you were not like a prostitute because you refused payment. 32 You adulterous wife, who welcomes and receives strangers instead of her husband! 33 Men give gifts to all prostitutes, but you give your gifts to all your lovers, bribing the pagan nations to come to you [as allies] from every direction for your obscene immoralities. 34 And you are different from other [unfaithful] women in your promiscuity, in that no one follows you to lure you into prostitution, and because you give money and no money is given you; in this way you are different.”
35 Therefore, O prostitute [Israel], hear the word of the Lord. 36 Thus says the Lord God, “Because your lewdness was poured out and your nakedness uncovered through your obscene immoralities with your lovers (pagan allies), and with all your [repulsive] idols, and because of the blood of your sons that you gave to them, 37 therefore, listen, I will gather all your lovers (pagan allies) with whom you took pleasure, and all those whom you loved with all those whom you hated; I will even gather them against you from every direction and will expose your nakedness to them that they may see all your nakedness [making you, Israel, an object of loathing and of mockery, a spectacle among the nations]. 38 And I [the Lord God] will judge you like women who commit adultery or shed blood are judged; and I will bring on you the blood of wrath and jealousy. 39 I will also hand you over to your lovers, and they will tear down your shrines, demolish your high places, strip you of your clothing, take away your jewels, and they will leave you naked and bare. 40 They will also incite a crowd against you and they will stone you and slaughter you with their swords. 41 They will burn down your houses with fire and execute judgments on you in the sight of many women (Gentile nations). Then I will make you cease your prostitution, and you will no longer hire your lovers. 42 So I will calm My wrath toward you and My jealousy [resulting from being denied what is rightfully and uniquely mine] will turn away from you; I will be pacified and no longer angry. 43 Because you have not remembered the days of your youth but have enraged Me with all these things, therefore, I in turn will bring your conduct down on your own head,” says the Lord God, “so that you will not commit this lewdness on top of all your other repulsive acts.
44 “Behold, everyone who uses proverbs will use this proverb against you: ‘Like mother, like daughter.’ 45 You are the daughter of your mother, who loathed her husband and her children. You are the sister of your sisters, who loathed their husbands and their children. Your [spiritual] mother was a Hittite and your [spiritual] father an Amorite. 46 Now your older sister is Samaria, she with her daughters (outlying cities) who live north of you; and your younger sister is Sodom, she with her daughters who live south of you. 47 Yet you have not merely walked in their ways or behaved in accordance with their pagan practices; but, as if that were too little, you [soon] acted more corruptly in all your ways than they. 48 As I live,” says the Lord God, “Sodom, your sister and her daughters have not done as you and your daughters have done. 49 Behold, this was the sin of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters (outlying cities) had arrogance, abundant food, and careless ease, but she did not help the poor and needy. 50 They were haughty and committed repulsive acts before Me; therefore I removed them when I saw it. 51 Furthermore, Samaria did not commit half of your sins, but you have greatly increased your repulsive acts more than they. So you have made your [wicked] sisters [Samaria and Sodom] appear righteous and justified by [comparison to] all the disgusting things which you have done. 52 Also bear your disgrace [as punishment], having made judgment favorable for your sisters, for [you virtually absolved them] because of your sins in which you behaved more repulsively than they; they are more in the right than you. Yes, be ashamed and bear your disgrace, for you made your [pagan] sisters seem righteous.
53 “Nevertheless, I will restore them [again] from their captivity, the captivity of Sodom and her daughters (outlying cities), the captivity of Samaria and her daughters, and along with them [I will restore you from] your own captivity [in the day of the Lord God], 54 so that you [Judah] will bear your humiliation and disgrace, and be [thoroughly] ashamed for all [the wickedness] that you have done to console and comfort them. 55 Your sisters, Sodom and her daughters and Samaria and her daughters will return to their former state; and you and your daughters will return to your former state. 56 For [the name of] your sister Sodom was not mentioned by you [except as a byword] in the day of your pride [when David ruled], 57 before your [own] wickedness was uncovered. Now you have become an object of reproach and a byword for the daughters of Aram and of Edom and all who are around her, and for the daughters of the Philistines—those surrounding you who despise you. 58 You have borne [the penalty of] your lewdness and your repulsive acts,” says the Lord. 59 Yes, thus says the Lord God, “I will also deal with you as you have done, you who have despised the oath by breaking the covenant.
The Covenant Remembered
60 “Nevertheless, I will remember [with compassion] My covenant with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you. 61 Then you will remember your ways and be ashamed when you receive your sisters, both your older and your younger; I will give them to you as daughters, but not because of your covenant [with Me]. 62 And I will establish My covenant with you, and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord, 63 so that you may remember [in detail] and be ashamed and never open your mouth again because of your humiliation, when I have forgiven you for all that you have done,” says the Lord God.
Parable of Two Eagles and a Vine
17 Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, ask a riddle and tell a [ak]parable to the house of Israel, 3 saying, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “A great eagle (Nebuchadnezzar) with great wings, long pinions and a rich plumage of many colors came to Lebanon (Jerusalem) and took away the top of the cedar (Judah). 4 He broke off the topmost of its young twigs (young King Jehoiachin) and carried it to a land of traders (Babylonia); he set it in a city of merchants (Babylon). 5 He also took some of the seed of the land ([al]Zedekiah, of the royal family) and planted it in fertile soil and a fruitful field; he placed it beside abundant waters and set it like a willow tree. 6 Then it sprouted and grew and became a low, spreading vine whose branches turned [in submission] toward him, but its roots remained under it. So it became a vine and yielded shoots and sent out branches.
7 “There was [also] another great [am]eagle with great wings and many feathers; and behold, this vine (Zedekiah) bent its roots toward him and sent out its branches toward him, away from the beds where it was planted, for him to water. 8 It was planted in good soil where water was plentiful for it to produce leaves and branches and to bear fruit, so that it might become a splendid vine.”’ 9 Thus says the Lord God, ‘Ask, “Will it thrive? Will he (Nebuchadnezzar) not uproot it and strip off its fruit so that all its sprouting leaves will wither? It will not take a strong arm or many people to uproot it [ending Israel’s national existence]. 10 Though it is planted, will it thrive and grow? Will it not completely wither when the east wind touches it? It will wither in the beds where it grew.”’”
11 Moreover, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 12 “Say now to the rebellious house, ‘Do you not know (realize) what these things mean?’ Tell them, ‘Hear this, the king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and took its king [Jehoiachin] and its princes and brought them with him to Babylon. 13 And he took a member of the royal family [the king’s uncle, Zedekiah] and made a covenant with him, putting him under oath. He also took the important leaders of the land, 14 so that the kingdom would be in subjection, unable to restore itself and rise again, but that by keeping his covenant it might continue. 15 But Zedekiah rebelled against Nebuchadnezzar by sending his ambassadors to Egypt so that they might give him horses and many troops. Will he succeed? Will he who does such things escape? Can he indeed break the covenant [with Babylon] and [still] escape? 16 As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘surely in the country of the king (Nebuchadnezzar) who made Zedekiah [the vassal] king, whose oath he despised and whose covenant he broke, in Babylon Zedekiah shall die. 17 Pharaoh with his mighty army and great company will not help him in the war, when they (the Babylonians) put up ramps and build siege walls to destroy many lives. 18 Now Zedekiah dishonored the oath by breaking the covenant, and behold, he gave his hand and pledged his allegiance, yet did all these things; he shall not escape.’” 19 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, “As I live, I will bring down on his own head My oath [made on My behalf by Nebuchadnezzar] which Zedekiah dishonored and My covenant which he broke. 20 I will spread My net over him, and he will be caught in My snare; and I will bring him to Babylon and will enter into judgment with him there for his treason which he has committed against Me. 21 All the choice men [from Judah] in all his troops will fall by the sword, and those that survive will be scattered to every wind; and you will know [without any doubt] that I the Lord have spoken.”
22 [an]Thus says the Lord God, “I Myself will take a twig from the lofty top of the cedar and will set it out; I will crop off from the topmost of its young twigs a tender one and I will plant it on a high and lofty mountain. 23 I will plant it on the mountain heights of Israel, that it may grow boughs and bear fruit and be a noble and stately cedar. And birds of every kind will live under it; they will nest [securely] in the shade of its branches. 24 All the trees of the field will know that I the Lord bring down the tall tree, exalt the low tree, dry up the green tree, and make the dry tree flourish. I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will fulfill it.”
God Deals Justly with Individuals
18 The word of the Lord came to me again, saying, 2 “What do you mean by using this proverb concerning the land of Israel,
‘[ao]The fathers eat sour grapes [they sin],
3 As I live,” says the Lord God, “you are certainly not going to use this proverb [as an excuse] in Israel anymore. 4 Behold (pay close attention), all souls are Mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is Mine. The soul who sins will die.
5 “But if a man is righteous (keeps the law) and practices justice and righteousness, 6 and does not eat [at the pagan shrines] on the mountains or raise his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, or defile his neighbor’s wife or approach a woman during her [monthly] time of impurity— 7 if a man does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, does not commit robbery, but gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with clothing, 8 if he [ap]does not charge interest or take a percentage of increase [on what he lends in compassion], if he keeps his hand from sin and executes true justice between man and man, 9 if he walks in My statutes and [keeps] My ordinances so as to act with integrity; [then] he is [truly] righteous and shall certainly live,” says the Lord God.
10 “If he is the father of a violent son who sheds blood, and who does any of these things to a brother 11 (though the father did not do any of these things), that is, the son even eats [the food set before idols] at the mountain shrines, and defiles his neighbor’s wife, 12 oppresses the poor and needy, commits robbery, does not restore [to the debtor] his pledge, but raises his eyes to the idols, and commits repulsive acts, 13 and charges interest and takes [a percentage of] increase on what he has loaned; will he then live? He will not live! He has done all these disgusting things, he shall surely be put to death; his blood will be on his own head.
14 “Now behold, if this [wicked] man has a son who has observed all the sins which his father committed, and considers [thoughtfully what he has observed] and does not do like his father: 15 He does not eat [food set before idols] at the mountain shrines or raise his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, or defile his neighbor’s wife, 16 or oppress anyone, or take anything in pledge, or commit robbery, but he gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with clothing, 17 he keeps his hand from [oppressing] the poor, does not receive interest or increase [from the needy], but executes My ordinances and walks in My statutes; he shall not die for the sin (guilt) of his father; he shall certainly live. 18 As for his father, because he practiced extortion, robbed his brother, and did that which is not good among his people, behold, he shall die for his sin.
19 “Yet do you say, ‘Why should the son not bear the punishment for the father’s sin?’ When the son has practiced justice and righteousness and has kept all My statutes and has done them, he shall certainly live. 20 The person who sins [is the one that] will die. The son will not bear the punishment for the sin of the father, nor will the father bear the punishment for the sin of the son; the righteousness of the righteous shall be on himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be on himself.
21 “But if the wicked man turns [away] from all his sins which he has committed and keeps all My statutes and practices justice and righteousness, he shall certainly live; he shall not die. 22 All of his transgressions which he has committed will not be remembered against him; because of his righteousness which he has practiced [for his moral and spiritual integrity in every area and relationship], he will live. 23 Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked,” says the Lord God, “rather than that he should turn [away] from his [malevolent] acts and live?
24 “But when the righteous man turns away from his righteousness and commits sin and acts in accordance with all the repulsive things that the wicked man does, will he live? All of his righteous deeds which he has done will not be remembered because of the treachery that he has committed and for his sin which he has committed; for them he shall die. 25 Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not right.’ Hear now, O house of Israel! Is My way not right? Is it not your ways that are not right? 26 When a righteous man turns away from his righteousness, and commits sin and dies because of it, it is for his sin which he has committed that he dies. 27 Again, when a wicked man turns away from his wickedness which he has committed and practices justice and righteousness, he will save his life. 28 Because he considered and turned away from all the transgressions which he had committed, he shall certainly live; he shall not die. 29 Yet the house of Israel says, ‘The way of the Lord is not right!’ O house of Israel, are My ways not right? Is it not your ways that are not right?
30 “Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, each one in accordance with his conduct,” says the Lord God. “Repent (change your way of thinking) and turn away from all your transgressions, so that sin may not become a stumbling block to you. 31 Cast away from you all your transgressions which you have committed [against Me], and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! For why should you die, O house of Israel? 32 For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies,” says the Lord God. “Therefore, repent and live!”
Dirge for the Princes of Israel
19 “As for you, take up a dirge (funeral poem to be sung) for the princes of Israel 2 and say,
‘What was your mother [Jerusalem and Judah]?
This is a dirge (funeral poem to be sung), and has become a dirge.
God’s Dealings with Israel Rehearsed
20 In the seventh year, in the fifth month, on the tenth of the month [after the beginning of the exile in Babylon], certain of the elders of Israel came to inquire of the Lord and sat down before me. 2 Then came the word of the Lord 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, “I will not be inquired of by you.”’ 4 Will you judge them, son of man, will you judge them? Then make them know [accurately] and understand fully the repulsive acts of their fathers; 5 and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “On the day when I chose Israel and lifted up My hand and swore to the descendants of the house of Jacob and made Myself known to them in the land of Egypt, when I swore to them, saying, I am the Lord your God, 6 on that day I swore to them to bring them out of the land of Egypt into a land that I had selected for them, [plentiful and] [as]flowing with milk and honey, [a land] which is an ornament and a glory to all lands. 7 Then I said to them, ‘Let every man throw away the detestable things on which he feasts his eyes, and do not defile yourselves with the idols of Egypt; I am the Lord your God.’ 8 But they rebelled against Me and were not willing to listen to Me; they did not throw away the detestable things on which they feasted their eyes, nor did they [at]give up the idols of Egypt.
“Then I decided to pour out My wrath on them and finish My anger against them in the land of Egypt. 9 But I acted for My Name’s sake, that it would not be profaned in the sight of the [pagan] nations among whom they lived, in whose sight I made Myself known to them by bringing them out of the land of Egypt. 10 So I made them leave the land of Egypt and brought them into the wilderness. 11 I gave them My statutes and explained My ordinances to them, which, if a man keeps, he will live. 12 Also I gave them My Sabbaths to be a sign between Me and them, that they might know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord who sanctifies them (separates and sets them apart). 13 But the house of Israel rebelled against Me in the wilderness. They did not walk in My statutes and they despised and rejected My ordinances, which, if a man keeps, he will live; and they greatly profaned My Sabbaths. Then I decided to pour out My wrath on them in the wilderness, to annihilate them. 14 But I acted for My Name’s sake, that it would not be profaned in the sight of the [pagan] nations in whose sight I had brought them out [of slavery]. 15 I also swore to them in the wilderness that I would not bring them into the land which I had given them, [a land of plenty] [au]flowing with milk and honey, which is the ornament and glory of all lands, 16 because they rejected My ordinances, and as for My statutes, they did not walk in them; they even profaned My Sabbaths, for their heart continually went after their [worthless] idols. 17 Yet My eye [looked on them with compassion and] spared them instead of destroying them, and I did not annihilate 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 ordinances nor defile yourselves with their idols. 19 I am the Lord your God; walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and observe them. 20 Sanctify My Sabbaths and keep them holy; and they shall be a sign between Me and you, that you may know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord your God.’ 21 Yet the children rebelled against Me; they did not walk in My statutes, nor were they careful to observe My ordinances, which, if a man keeps, he will live; they profaned My Sabbaths. Then I decided to pour out My wrath on them and finish My anger against them in the wilderness. 22 Yet I withdrew My hand and acted for My Name’s sake, that it would not be profaned in the sight of the [pagan] nations in whose sight I had brought them out [of slavery]. 23 Moreover, I swore to them in the wilderness that I would scatter them among the [Gentile] nations and disperse them among the countries, 24 because they had not observed My ordinances, but had [dishonored and] rejected My statutes and had profaned My Sabbaths, and set their eyes on the [man-made] idols of their fathers. 25 [Therefore] I also gave them statutes that were not good and ordinances by which they could not live; 26 and I pronounced them unclean because of their offerings [to their idols], in that they made all their firstborn pass through the fire [as pagan sacrifices], so that I might make them desolate, in order that they might know [without any doubt] 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, “Again in this your fathers have blasphemed Me, in that they acted faithlessly and treacherously against Me. 28 For when I had brought them into the land which I swore to give to them, they saw every high hill and every dark and leafy tree [as a place for idol worship], and there they offered their sacrifices and there they presented their offering that provoked My anger; there also they made their sweet-smelling aroma and there poured out their drink offerings. 29 Then I said to them, ‘What is the high place to which you go?’ So the name of it is called Bamah (High Place) to this day.”’ 30 Therefore, say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Will you [exiles] defile yourselves in the same manner as your fathers? And will you prostitute yourselves before their loathsome and heinous things? 31 When you offer your gifts, when you make your sons pass through the fire, you are defiling yourselves with all your idols to this day. And shall I be asked by you [for an oracle], O house of Israel? As I live,” says the Lord God, “I will not be inquired of by you. 32 What comes into your mind will never happen, when you say, ‘We will be like the [pagan] nations, like the tribes of the [Gentile] countries, serving [idols made of] wood and stone.’
God Will Restore Israel to Her Land
33 “As I live,” says the Lord God, “most certainly with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with wrath poured out, I shall be King over you. 34 I will bring you out from the peoples and will gather you from the countries in which you are scattered, with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out; 35 and I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there I will enter into judgment with you and contend with you face to face. 36 As I entered into judgment with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so I will enter into judgment and contend with you,” says the Lord God. 37 “I will make you pass under the rod [as the shepherd does with his sheep when he counts them, and I will count you as Mine and constrain you] and bring you into the bond of the covenant [to which you are permanently bound]. 38 And I will separate from you the rebels and those who transgress against Me; I will bring them out of the land where they temporarily live, but they will not enter the land of Israel. Thus you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
39 “As for you, O house of Israel,” thus says the Lord God, “Go, let everyone serve his idols; but later you shall most certainly listen to Me, and you shall no longer profane My holy name with your gifts and with your idols. 40 For on My holy mountain, on the high mountain of Israel (Zion),” says the Lord God, “there the whole house of Israel, all of them in the land, shall serve Me. There I will [graciously] accept them, and there I will seek (require) your offerings and the choicest of your gifts, with all your holy and sacred things. 41 I will accept you [graciously] as a pleasant and soothing aroma when I bring you out from the peoples and gather you from the lands in which you have been scattered; and I will prove Myself holy and manifest My holiness among you in the sight of the nations. 42 And you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord, when I bring you into the land of Israel, into the land which I swore to give to your fathers. 43 There you will remember your ways and all your deeds with which you have defiled yourselves; and you will loathe yourselves in your own sight because of all your evil deeds which you have done. 44 And you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord when I have dealt with you for My Name’s sake, not in accordance with your evil ways nor with your corrupt conduct, O house of Israel,” says the Lord God.’”
45 Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 46 “Son of man, set your face toward Teman, and speak out against the south and prophesy against the forest land of the Negev (the South), 47 and say to the forest of the Negev, ‘Hear the word of the Lord: thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am about to kindle a fire in you, and it will devour every one of your green trees, as well as every one of your dry trees. The blazing flame will not be quenched and the whole surface from the south to the north will be burned by it. 48 All flesh will see that I the Lord have kindled it; it will not be quenched.”’” 49 Then I said, “Ah, Lord God! They are saying of me, ‘Is he not [just] speaking in parables and making allegories?’”
Parable of the Sword of the Lord
21 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, set your face toward Jerusalem, and direct your [prophetic] word against the sanctuaries; prophesy against the land of Israel 3 and say to the land of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Behold, I am against you and will draw My sword out of its sheath and I will cut off from you both the righteous and the wicked. 4 Because I will cut off from you both the righteous and the wicked, therefore My sword will go from its sheath against all flesh from south to north, 5 and all living will know [without any doubt] that I the Lord have drawn My sword out of its sheath; it will not be sheathed again.”’ 6 As for you, son of man, groan with breaking heart and bitter grief, groan in their sight. 7 And when they say to you, ‘Why do you sigh and groan?’ you shall answer, ‘Because of the news that is coming; and every heart will melt and all hands will be frail, and every spirit will faint and all knees will be weak as water. Behold, it comes and it will happen,’ says the Lord God.”
8 Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 9 “Son of man, prophesy and say, ‘Thus says the Lord.’ Say,
‘A sword, a sword [from Babylon] is sharpened
Shall we then rejoice [when such a disaster approaches]? But it rejects and views with contempt the scepter of My son [Judah]. 11 The sword [of Babylon] is ready to be polished so that it may be handled and put to use; the sword is sharpened and polished to be put in the hand of the slayer (Nebuchadnezzar). 12 Cry out and wail, son of man, for it is against My people; it is against all the princes of Israel. They are thrown to the sword along with My [terrified] people. Therefore strike your thigh and strike your chest [in grief]. 13 For this sword has been tested [on others]; and what if it views with contempt the scepter [of Judah]? The scepter shall be no more [but shall be swept away],” says the Lord God.
14 “Therefore, son of man, prophesy and strike your hands together; and let the sword be doubled the third time [in intensity], the sword for the slain. It is the sword for the great slaughter which surrounds them [so that no one can escape, even by hiding in their inner rooms], 15 so that hearts may melt, and many will fall at their gates. I have given the glittering sword. Ah! It is made [to flash] like lightning; it is pointed and sharpened for slaughter. 16 Turn O sword and cut right or cut left, whichever way your thirst for blood and your edge direct you. 17 I will also strike My hands together, and I will cause My wrath to rest. I the Lord have spoken.”
The Instrument of God’s Judgment
18 The word of the Lord came to me, saying, 19 “As for you, son of man, mark out two ways for the sword of the king of Babylon to come, both starting from the same land. And make a signpost; place it at the head of the way to the city. 20 You shall point out a way for the [Babylonian] sword to come to Rabbah [the capital] of the sons of Ammon, and to Judah into fortified Jerusalem. 21 For the king of Babylon stands at the parting of the way, at the fork of the two ways, to use divination. He shakes the arrows, he consults the teraphim (household idols), he looks at the liver [of an animal for an omen]. 22 In his right hand is the lot marked for Jerusalem: to set battering rams, to open the mouth calling for destruction, to lift up the voice with a war cry, to set battering rams against the gates, to put up assault ramps, and to build siege walls. 23 It will seem like a false divination in their eyes, those who have sworn solemn oaths [of allegiance to Nebuchadnezzar]. But he will remind them of their guilt [by rebelling and violating their oath], that they may be caught.
24 “Therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Because you have caused your guilt to be remembered, in that your rebellion is uncovered, so that your sins appear in everything that you do—because you have come to mind, you will be seized with the hand [of the enemy]. 25 And you, O dishonored and wicked one [Zedekiah], the prince of Israel, whose day has come, whose time of final punishment is here,’ 26 thus says the Lord God, ‘Remove the turban and take off the crown; things shall not remain as they have been. Exalt that which is low and abase the high. 27 A ruin, a ruin, I will make it a ruin! It shall no longer exist until He comes whose right it is [to reign], and I will give it to Him.’
28 “And you, son of man, prophesy and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God concerning the sons of Ammon and concerning their reproach (disgrace),’ and say: ‘A sword, a sword is drawn for the slaughter; it is sharpened and polished to put an end [to everything], and to flash like lightning, 29 while they (Ammonite prophets) see false visions [of peace] for you, while they divine lies [of escape] for you—to place you [of Ammon] on the headless bodies of the wicked who are slain, whose day has come, whose time of the final punishment is here. 30 Return the sword to its sheath. In the place where you were created, in the land of your origin (birth), I will judge you. 31 I will pour out My indignation on you [sons of Ammon]; I will blow on you with the fire of My wrath, and I will place you in the hand of brutal men, skilled in destruction. 32 You will be fuel for the fire; your blood will be in the midst of the land. You will not be remembered, for I the Lord have spoken.’”
The Sins of Israel
22 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “And you, son of man [Ezekiel], will you judge, will you judge the city of bloodshed? Then make her recognize all her repulsive acts. 3 You shall say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “A city that sheds blood in her midst, so that her time [of doom] will come, and makes idols to defile her, contrary to her interest! 4 You have become guilty by the blood which you have shed, and you are defiled by the idols which you have made. Thus you have caused your day [of judgment and punishment] to approach and have arrived at [the completion of] your years; therefore, I have made you an object of scorn to the [pagan] nations and a thing to be mocked by all countries. 5 Those who are near and those who are far from you will mock you, you [infamous one] of ill repute, full of turmoil.
6 “Behold, the princes of Israel, every one according to his power, have been intending to shed blood in you. 7 In you they have treated father and mother lightly. They have oppressed the stranger among you; and in your presence they have wronged the fatherless and the widow. 8 You have despised and scorned My sacred things and have profaned My Sabbaths. 9 In you are men who slander for the purpose of shedding blood, and in your presence they have eaten [food offered to idols] at the mountain shrines; in your midst they have committed acts of lewdness. 10 In you men have uncovered their fathers’ nakedness [the nakedness of mother or stepmother]; in you they have violated women who are [set apart as ceremonially] unclean during their menstrual impurity [or after childbirth]. 11 In you one has committed a shameful act with his neighbor’s wife, another has lewdly defiled his daughter-in-law, and another has violated his sister, his father’s daughter. 12 In you they have accepted bribes to shed blood; you have taken [forbidden] interest and [a percentage of] profits, and you have injured your neighbors for gain by oppression and extortion, and you have forgotten Me,” says the Lord God.
13 “Behold, therefore, I strike My hands [together] at your dishonest gain which you have acquired and at the bloodshed which is among you. 14 Can your heart (courage) endure, or can your hands be strong in the days that I will deal with you? I the Lord have spoken, and will act. 15 I will scatter you among the nations and disperse you through the countries, and I will destroy your filthiness. 16 You will defile yourself in the sight of the [Gentile] nations, and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”’”
17 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 18 “Son of man, the house of Israel has become dross (metallic waste) to Me. All of them are (useless) bronze, tin, iron, and lead in the furnace; they are the dross of silver. 19 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Because you have all become dross, therefore, behold, I will gather you [O Israel] into the midst of Jerusalem. 20 As they gather silver and bronze and iron and lead and tin into the furnace to blow fire on it in order to melt it, so I will gather you in My anger and in My wrath, and I will put you there and melt you. 21 I will gather you and blow on you with the fire of My wrath, and you will be melted in the midst of it. 22 As silver is melted in the furnace, so will you be melted in the midst of it; and you will know [without any doubt] that I the Lord have poured out My wrath on you [O Israel].’”
23 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 24 “Son of man, say to her, ‘You [Israel] are a land that is not pronounced clean or rained on in the day of indignation.’ 25 There is a conspiracy of her [false] prophets in her midst, like a roaring lion tearing the prey. They have devoured [human] life; they have taken [in their greed] treasure and precious things; they have made many widows among her. 26 Her priests have done violence to My law and have profaned My holy things. They have made no distinction between the holy (sacred) and the profane (secular), they have not taught [people] the difference between the unclean and the clean; and they hide their eyes from My Sabbaths, and I am profaned among them. 27 Her princes within her are like wolves tearing and devouring the prey, shedding blood and destroying lives in order to get dishonest gain. 28 Her prophets have smeared whitewash for them, seeing false visions and divining lies for them, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord God’—when the Lord has not spoken. 29 The people of the land have practiced oppression and extortion and have committed robbery; they have wronged the poor and needy and they have oppressed the stranger without justice. 30 I searched for a man among them who would build up the wall and stand in the gap before Me for [the sake of] the land, that I would not destroy it, but I found no one [not even one]. 31 Therefore I have poured out My indignation on them; I have consumed them with the fire of My wrath; I have repaid their way [by bringing it] upon their own heads,” says the Lord God.
Oholah and Oholibah’s Sin and Its Consequences
23 The word of the Lord came to me again, saying, 2 “Son of man, there were two women (Israel and Judah), the daughters of one mother (the united kingdom); 3 and they prostituted themselves in Egypt. From their youth they were grossly immoral; in that place their breasts were embraced and their virgin bosom was grasped. 4 Their names were Oholah the elder and Oholibah her sister, and they became Mine and they gave birth to sons and daughters. And as for [the identity of] their names, Oholah is Samaria (capital city of [av]Israel) and Oholibah is Jerusalem (capital city of [aw]Judah).
5 “Oholah played the prostitute while she was Mine; and she adored and lusted after her lovers (allies), the Assyrians, her neighbors, 6 who were clothed in purple, governors and officials, all of them attractive young men, horsemen riding on horses. 7 She bestowed [freely] her immoralities on them, the choicest men of Assyria, all of them; and with all whom she adored and lusted after, she defiled herself with their idols. 8 She did not [ax]give up the acts of prostitution that originated during her time in Egypt; for in her youth men had lain with her, and they handled her virgin bosom and poured out their depravity on her. 9 Therefore, I placed her in the hand of her lovers (allies), into the hand of the Assyrians whom she adored. 10 They uncovered her nakedness; they took her sons and her daughters and they killed her with the sword. So she became [ay]notorious among women, and they executed judgments on her.
11 “Now her sister Oholibah saw this, yet she was more corrupt in her lust than she, and her acts of prostitution were more [wanton] than the immoralities of her sister. 12 She lusted after the Assyrians—governors and officials, her neighbors, magnificently clothed, horsemen riding on horses, all of them desirable young men. 13 I saw that she had defiled herself; they both behaved the same way. 14 But Oholibah carried her depravity further, for she saw men pictured on the wall, the images of the Chaldeans (Babylonians) sketched and portrayed in vermilion (bright red pigment), 15 girded with belts on their [az]loins, with flowing turbans on their heads, all of them looking like officers, like the Babylonian men whose native land was Chaldea. 16 When she saw [the sketches of] them, she lusted after them and sent messengers to them in Chaldea. 17 The Babylonians came to her to the bed of love and they defiled her with their evil desire; and when she had been defiled by them, she (Jerusalem) broke the relationship and pushed them away from her in disgust. 18 So she flaunted her acts of prostitution and exposed her nakedness; then I became disgusted with her [and turned away], as I had become disgusted with her sister [and turned away]. 19 Yet she multiplied her depravities, remembering the days of her youth, when she was actively immoral in the land of Egypt. 20 For she lusted after her lovers [there], whose flesh is like the flesh of donkeys and whose issue is like the issue of horses. 21 Thus you longed for the lewdness and vulgarity of your youth, when the Egyptians handled your bosom on account of the breasts of your youth.
22 “Therefore, O Oholibah, thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I will stir up your lovers (allies) against you, from whom you turned away in disgust, and I will bring them against you from every side: 23 the Babylonians and all the Chaldeans, Pekod and Shoa and Koa, and all the Assyrians with them, desirable young men, governors and officials all of them, princes, officers and men of renown, all of them riding on horses. 24 They will come against you with weapons, chariots, and wagons, and with a company of people (infantry) who will array themselves against you on every side with large shield and small, and helmet; and I will commit the judgment and the punishment to them, and they will judge and punish you in accordance with their [pagan] customs. 25 I will set My jealous indignation against you [demanding what is rightfully and uniquely mine], and they will deal with you in fury. They will remove your nose and your ears, and your survivors will fall by the sword. They will take your sons and your daughters; and the survivors will be devoured by the fire. 26 They will also strip you (Judah) of your clothes and take away your beautiful jewels. 27 Thus I will put an end to your lewdness and your prostitution brought from the land of Egypt, so that you will not lift up your eyes to them or remember Egypt [with longing] anymore.’ 28 For thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I will place you into the hands of those whom you hate, into the hands of those from whom you turned away in disgust. 29 They will deal with you in hatred, take all your property, and leave you naked and bare. And the nakedness of your depravity will be uncovered, both your lewdness and your obscene practices. 30 These things will be done to you because you have prostituted yourself with the [Gentile] nations, because you have defiled yourself with their idols. 31 You have walked in the way of your sister (Samaria); therefore I will give her cup [of judgment] into your hand.’ 32 Thus says the Lord God,
‘You will drink your sister’s cup,
for I have spoken,’ says the Lord God. 35 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Because you have forgotten Me and cast Me behind your back, therefore bear now [the consequences of] your lewdness and prostitution.’”
36 Moreover, the Lord said to me, “Son of man, will you judge Oholah (Samaria, capital of Israel) and Oholibah (Jerusalem, capital of Judah)? Then inform them of their atrocities [the detestable and vile things they do]. 37 For they have committed adultery, and blood is on their hands. They have committed adultery [against Me] with their idols and have even forced their sons, whom they bore to Me, to pass through the fire as [an offering of] food to them (idols). 38 Moreover, they have done this to Me: they have defiled My sanctuary on the same day [of their idolatries] and have profaned My Sabbaths. 39 For when they had killed their children [as offerings] to their idols, then they came the same day to My sanctuary to profane it [by daring to offer a sacrifice there also]. And behold, this they did within My house.
40 “Furthermore, you have even sent a messenger for men to come from far away; and behold, they came—those for whom you bathed, painted your eyes, and decorated yourself with ornaments; 41 and you sat on a splendid couch with a table arranged before it on which you had set My incense and My oil. 42 The sound of a carefree crowd was with her; and drunkards were brought from the wilderness with men of a common sort, who put bracelets on the hands of the women (both sisters) and beautiful crowns on their heads.
43 “Then I said concerning the one (Oholah) worn out by adulteries, ‘Will they now commit adultery with her when she is like this?’ 44 But they committed adultery with her as they would with a prostitute. So they went in to Oholah (Israel) and to Oholibah (Judah), the lewd women. 45 And they, righteous men, will judge and condemn them with the judgment (punishment) of adulteresses and with the judgment of women who shed blood, because they are adulteresses and blood is on their hands.
46 “For thus says the Lord God, ‘Bring up a horde (mob) against them and hand them over to terror and plunder. 47 And the horde will stone them with stones and cut them down with their swords; they will kill their sons and their daughters and burn down their houses with fire. 48 Thus I will make lewdness cease from the land, that all women may be admonished and taught not to commit immoral acts as you have done. 49 Thus your lewdness will be repaid to you, and you will suffer the penalty for your [sinful] idolatry; and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord God.’”
Parable of the Boiling Pot
24 Again in the ninth year [of King Jehoiachin’s captivity by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon], in the tenth month, on the tenth [day] of the month, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, record the name of the day, this very day. The king of Babylon has laid siege to Jerusalem this very day. 3 Speak a parable against the rebellious house [of Judah] and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“Put on a pot; put it on and also pour water into it;
14 I the Lord have spoken; it is coming and I will act. I will not relent, and I will not have compassion and I will not be sorry; in accordance with your ways and in accordance with your deeds I will judge and punish you,” says the Lord God.’”
Death of Ezekiel’s Wife Is a Sign
15 Also the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 16 “Son of man, listen carefully, I am about to take away from you the desire of your eyes [your wife] with a single stroke. Yet you shall not mourn and you shall not weep, and your tears shall not flow. 17 Sigh and groan in silence; do not mourn for the dead. Bind on your turban and put your sandals on your feet, and do not cover your mustache or eat the bread of [mourners furnished by other] men.” 18 So I spoke to the people in the morning, and [ba]in the evening my wife died. And the next morning I did as I was commanded. 19 The people said to me, “These things that you are doing—tell us, what do they mean for us?” 20 Then I answered them, “The word of the Lord came to me, saying, 21 ‘Speak to the house of Israel, “Thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I will [bb]profane My sanctuary, the pride of your strength, the desire of your eyes, and the delight of your soul; and your sons and your daughters whom you have left behind [in Jerusalem] will fall by the sword. 22 You will do as I [Ezekiel] have done; you shall not cover your mustache nor eat the bread of [mourning brought to you by other] men. 23 Your turbans will be on your heads and your sandals on your feet. You will not mourn or weep, but you will rot away in your sins and you will groan to one another. 24 So Ezekiel will be a sign to you; in accordance with all that he has done you will do. And when this [destruction of the temple] comes, then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord God.’”
25 ‘As for you, son of man, on the day when I take their strength and their stronghold from them, their joy and their glory, the desire of their eyes and [bc]their heart’s [chief] delight (the temple), and I also take their sons and their daughters, 26 that on that day a survivor will come to you to let you hear [of the destruction of Jerusalem] with your [own] ears. 27 On that day [bd]your mouth will be opened to him who escaped, and you will speak and no longer be mute. In this way you shall be a sign to them, and they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.’”
Judgment on Gentile Nations—Ammon
25 The word of the Lord came to me again, saying, 2 “Son of man, set your face toward the [be]Ammonites and prophesy against them. 3 And say to the Ammonites, ‘Hear the word of the Lord God, for thus says the Lord God, “Because you said, ‘Aha!’ against My sanctuary when it was profaned and against the land of Israel when it was made desolate and against the house of Judah when they went into exile, 4 therefore, behold, I am going to give you to the people of the East as a possession, and they will set their encampments among you and make their dwellings among you; they will eat your fruit and drink your milk. 5 I will make Rabbah [your chief city] a pasture for camels and [the cities of] the Ammonites a resting place for flocks [of sheep]. And you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.” 6 For thus says the Lord God, “Because you have clapped your hands and stamped your feet and rejoiced with all the contempt, and malice, and spite of your soul against the land of Israel, 7 therefore, behold, I have stretched out My hand against you and will hand you over as prey and spoil to the nations. And I will cut you off from the peoples and will cause you to perish from the countries; I will destroy you. Then you shall know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”
8 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Because [bf]Moab and Seir (Edom) say, ‘Behold, the house of Judah is like all the [pagan] nations,’ 9 therefore, behold, I will deprive the flank of Moab of its cities which are on its frontiers, the glory of the land, Beth-jeshimoth, Baal-meon and Kiriathaim. 10 I will give it, along with the children of Ammon, to the people of the East as a possession, so that the children of Ammon will not be remembered among the nations [any longer]. 11 Thus I will execute judgment and punishment on Moab, and they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”
12 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Because [bg]Edom has acted against the house of Judah by taking vengeance, and has greatly offended and has incurred grievous guilt by taking revenge on them,” 13 therefore thus says the Lord God, “I will also stretch out My hand against Edom and I will cut off and destroy man and beast. I will make it desolate; from Teman even to Dedan they will fall by the sword. 14 I will take My vengeance on Edom by the hand of My people Israel. Therefore, they will act in Edom in accordance with My anger and My wrath, and they will know and experience My vengeance,” says the Lord God.
15 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Because the [bh]Philistines have acted revengefully and have taken vengeance [contemptuously] with malice in their hearts to destroy with everlasting hostility and hatred,” 16 therefore thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I will stretch out My hand against the Philistines, and I will cut off the [bi]Cherethites and destroy the remnant of the seacoast. 17 I will execute great vengeance on them with wrathful rebukes and chastisements and they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord when I lay My vengeance on them.”’”
Judgment on Tyre
26 Now in the eleventh year, on the first [day] of the month [after the capture of King Jehoiachin], the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, because [bj]Tyre has said against Jerusalem, ‘Aha! The gateway of the people is broken; she is open to me. I will be filled, now that she is a desolate waste,’ 3 therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I am against you, O Tyre, and I will cause many nations to come up against you, as the sea makes its waves crest. 4 They will destroy the walls of Tyre and break down her towers; and I will scrape her dust and debris from her and make her as bare as [the top of] a rock. 5 Her island in the midst of the sea will become a dry place to spread nets, for I have spoken,’ says the Lord God, ‘and she will become a prey and a spoil for the nations. 6 Also Tyre’s daughters (towns, villages) [bk]on the mainland will be killed by the sword, and they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.’”
7 For thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I will bring upon Tyre from the north [bl]Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, king of kings, with horses and chariots and with horsemen and a great army. 8 He will kill your daughters on the mainland with the sword, and he shall make siege walls against you and build a siege ramp against you and raise [a roof of] large shields [as a defense] against you. 9 He will direct the [shocking] blow of his battering rams against your walls, and he will tear down your towers with his crowbars. 10 Because of the great number of his horses, their dust will cover you; your walls [O Tyre] will shake from the noise of the horsemen and the wagons and the chariots when he enters your gates as men enter a city that is breached. 11 With the hoofs of his horses Nebuchadnezzar will trample all your streets; with the sword he will kill your people, and your strong pillars (obelisks) will fall to the ground. 12 Also they will take your riches as spoil and plunder your merchandise, and tear down your walls and your pleasant houses, and throw your stones and your timber and the debris [from your city] out in the water. 13 So I will silence your songs, and the sound of your lyres will no longer be heard. 14 I will make you [Tyre] a [bm]bare rock; you will be a dry place on which to spread nets. You will never be rebuilt, for I the Lord have spoken,” says the Lord God.
15 Thus says the Lord God to Tyre, “Shall not the coastlands shake at the sound of your fall when the wounded groan, when the slaughter occurs in your midst? 16 Then all the princes of the sea will go down from their thrones and remove their robes and take off their embroidered garments. They will clothe themselves with trembling; they will sit on the ground, tremble again and again, and be appalled at you. 17 They will take up a dirge (funeral poem to be sung) for you and say to you,
‘How you have perished and vanished, O renowned city,
19 For thus says the Lord God, “When I make you a desolate city, like the cities which are not inhabited, when I bring up the deep over you and great waters cover you, 20 then I will bring you down with those who descend into the pit (the place of the dead), to the people of old, and I will make you [Tyre] live in the depths of the earth, like the ancient ruins, with those who go down to the pit, so that you will not be inhabited; but I will set glory and splendor in the land of the living. 21 I will bring terrors on you and you will be no more. Though you will be sought, yet you will never be found again,” says the Lord God.
Dirge for Tyre
27 The word of the Lord came to me again, saying, 2 “Now you, son of man, take up a dirge (funeral poem to be sung) for Tyre, 3 and say to Tyre, who lives at the entrance to the sea, merchant of the peoples to many coastlands, ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“O Tyre, you have said, ‘I am perfect in beauty.’
10 “Persia and Lud and Put (Libya) were in your army as your men of war. They hung the shield and the helmet on you; they gave you splendor. 11 The men of Arvad with your army were upon your walls, all around, and the Gammadim (men of valor) were in your towers. They hung their shields on your walls, all around; they perfected your beauty.
12 “Tarshish [in Spain] was your customer and traded with you because of the abundance of your riches of all kinds; with silver, iron, tin, and lead they paid for your wares. 13 Javan (Greece), Tubal and Meshech (Asia Minor) traded with you; with the lives of men [taken as slaves] and vessels of bronze they paid for your merchandise. 14 Those from Beth-togarmah (Armenia) traded for your wares with [chariot] horses, war horses, and mules. 15 The men of [bp]Dedan were your traders. Many coastlands were your markets; ivory tusks and ebony they brought to you in payment or as gifts. 16 [bq]Aram traded with you because of the abundance of the goods you made. They paid for your merchandise with emeralds, purple, embroidered work, fine linen, coral, and rubies. 17 Judah and the land of Israel, they were your traders; with the wheat of Minnith [in Ammon], cakes, honey, oil, and balm they paid for your goods. 18 [br]Damascus traded with you because of the abundance of your handiworks and the immense wealth of every kind, with the wine of Helbon [Aleppo] and the white wool [of Sachar in Syria]. 19 Vedan and Javan traded with yarn from Uzal [in Arabia] for your wares; wrought iron, cassia, and sweet cane were among your merchandise. 20 Dedan traded with you in saddle blankets for riding. 21 Arabia and all the princes of Kedar, they were your customers for lambs, rams, and goats [favored by you]; for these they were your customers. 22 The merchants of Sheba and Raamah [in Arabia], they traded with you; they paid for your wares with the choicest of all kinds of spices and all kinds of precious stones and gold. 23 Haran and Canneh and Eden [in Mesopotamia], the merchants of Sheba [on the Euphrates], Asshur and Chilmad traded with you. 24 They traded with you in choice fabrics and garments, in clothes of blue or violet and embroidered work, and in [treasures of] multi-colored damask and knotted carpets bound with tightly wound cords, which were among your merchandise. 25 The ships of Tarshish were the caravans for your merchandise,
And you [Tyre] were replenished and very glorious [heavily laden with an imposing fleet]
Tyre’s King Overthrown
28 The word of the Lord came again to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, say to the prince of Tyre, ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“Because your heart is lifted up
6 Therefore thus says the Lord God,
‘Because you have imagined your mind [to be]
11 Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 12 “Son of man, take up a dirge (funeral poem to be sung) for the king of Tyre and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“You had the full measure of perfection and the finishing touch [of completeness],
Judgment of Sidon
20 Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 21 “Son of man, set your face toward Sidon, and prophesy against her 22 and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“Behold, I am against you, O Sidon,
24 And there will no longer be a briar or a painful thorn to prick the house of Israel from all those around them who treated them with contempt; then they will know [with clarity] that I am the Lord God.”
25 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “When I gather the house of Israel from the nations among whom they are scattered, and I manifest my Holiness in them in the sight of the nations, then they will live in their own land which I gave to My servant Jacob. 26 They shall live in it securely; and they will build houses, plant vineyards and live securely when I execute judgment on all those around them who despise them. Then they will know [with clarity and confidence] that I am the Lord their God.”’”
Judgment of Egypt
29 In the tenth year [of the captivity of King Jehoiachin by the king of Babylon], in the tenth month, on the twelfth of the month, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, set your face toward Pharaoh king of Egypt, and prophesy against him and against all Egypt. 3 Speak and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“Behold, I am against you, Pharaoh king of Egypt,
8 ‘Therefore thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am going to bring a sword on you and cut off (destroy) both man and animal, 9 and the land of Egypt will be a desolation and a wasteland. And they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
“Because you said, ‘The Nile is mine and I have made it,’ 10 behold (hear this), therefore, I am against you and against your rivers (the Nile, its tributaries), and I will make the land of Egypt a complete waste and a desolation, from [northern] Migdol to [southern] [bv]Syene, even as far as the border of Ethiopia (Cush). 11 No man’s foot will pass through it, no animal’s foot will pass through it, and it will not be inhabited for forty years. 12 So I will make the land of Egypt a desolation [plundered and ruined] among desolated lands; and her cities, among cities that are laid waste, will be desolate forty years. I will scatter the Egyptians among the nations and [I will] disperse them through the lands.”
13 ‘For thus says the Lord God, “At the end of forty years I will gather the Egyptians from the nations among whom they were scattered. 14 I will reverse the fortunes of Egypt [as I will that of Israel] and cause them to return to the land of Pathros, the land of their origin, and there they will be a lowly kingdom. 15 It will be the lowliest of the kingdoms, and it will [bw]never again exalt itself above the nations; I will diminish the Egyptians so they will never again rule over the nations. 16 And Egypt will never again have the confidence of the house of Israel; their wickedness will be remembered whenever Israel looks toward them [for help]. Then they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord God.”’”
17 In the twenty-seventh year [after King Jehoiachin was taken to Babylon], in the first month, on the first of the month, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 18 “Son of man, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon made his army [bx]work hard [at My command] against Tyre; every [soldier’s] head became [by]bald and every shoulder was worn and peeled [from carrying loads of dirt and stones for siege works]. Yet he had no wages from Tyre [in proportion to the time and labor expended during the siege], either for himself or his army, for the work that he had done against it [for Me].” 19 Therefore thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I will give the land of Egypt to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. And he will carry off her wealth and capture her spoil and seize her plunder; and it shall be the wages for his army. 20 I have given him the land of Egypt for the hard work which he did [against Tyre], because they did it for Me,” says the Lord God.
21 “In that day I will make a horn sprout for the house of Israel, and I will open your mouth among them, and they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord [when I renew their strength].”
Dirge for Egypt
30 The word of the Lord came again to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, prophesy and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“Wail, ‘Alas for the day!’
5 Ethiopia (Cush), Put, Lud, all [bz]Arabia, Libya (Cub) and the people of the land of the covenant [the Jews who had taken refuge in Egypt] will fall with the Egyptians by the sword.”
9 On that day [swift] messengers will go from Me in ships to frighten the careless and unsuspecting Ethiopians, and there will be anguish and trembling in them as in the day of [judgment for] Egypt; for behold, it is coming!”
10 ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“I will also make the great people of Egypt cease
Victory for Babylon
20 In the eleventh year [after King Jehoiachin was taken to Babylon], in the first month, on the seventh of the month, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 21 “Son of man, I have broken the arm of Pharaoh king of Egypt; and behold, it has not been bound up to heal or wrapped with a bandage, so that it may be strong to hold and wield the sword. 22 Therefore thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I am against Pharaoh king of Egypt and will break his arms, both the strong one and the broken, and I will make the sword fall from his hand. 23 I will scatter the Egyptians among the nations and will disperse them throughout the lands. 24 I will strengthen the arms of the king of Babylon and put My sword in his hand; but I will break Pharaoh’s arms and he will groan before him (Nebuchadnezzar) with the groanings of a [mortally] wounded man. 25 But I will strengthen and hold up the arms of the king of Babylon and the arms of Pharaoh will fall down. Then the people [of Egypt] will know that I am the Lord, when I put My sword into the hand of the king of Babylon and he stretches it out against the land of Egypt. 26 When I scatter the Egyptians among the nations and disperse them through the lands, then they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.’”
Pharaoh Warned of Assyria’s Fate
31 In the eleventh year [after King Jehoiachin was taken captive to Babylon], in the third month, on the first of the month, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, say to Pharaoh king of Egypt and to his hordes,
‘Whom are you like in your greatness?
10 ‘Therefore thus says the Lord God, “Because it is high in stature and has set its top among the thick boughs and the clouds, and its heart is proud of its height, 11 I will [cd]hand it over to a mighty one and a mighty one of the nations; he will most certainly deal with it. I have driven it away in accordance with its wickedness. 12 Alien tyrants of the nations have cut it down and left it; its foliage has fallen on the mountains and in all the valleys and its branches have been broken in all the ravines of the land. And all the nations of the earth have come from under its shade and have left it. 13 All the birds of the sky will nest in its ruins, and all the animals of the field will rest on its fallen branches 14 so that none of the trees by the waters may exalt themselves because of their height, nor set their top among the clouds, nor their well-watered mighty ones stand [arrogantly] in their height. For they have all been handed over to death, to the earth beneath, among the sons of men, with those who go down to the pit (the grave).”
15 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “On the day when Assyria went down to Sheol (the place of the dead) I caused mourning; I closed the deep [subterranean waters] over it and restrained its rivers. And the many waters [that contributed to its prosperity] were held back; and I made [the heart of] Lebanon mourn for it, and all the trees of the field wilted away because of it. 16 I made the nations quake at the sound of its fall when I cast it down to Sheol with those who descend into the pit; and all the well-watered trees of Eden, the choicest and the best of Lebanon, will be comforted in the earth beneath [at Assyria’s downfall]. 17 They also went down to Sheol with it to those who were slain by the sword; those who were its strength lived under its shade among the nations.
18 “Which among the trees of Eden do you equal in glory and in greatness [O Egypt]? Yet you [also] will be brought down with the trees of Eden to the earth beneath (nether world). You will lie among the [ce]uncircumcised (the barbaric, the boorish, the crude) with those who were slain by the sword. This is how it shall be with Pharaoh and all his hordes!”’ says the Lord God.”
Dirge for Pharaoh and Egypt
32 In the twelfth year [after King Jehoiachin of Judah was taken into exile by the king of Babylon], in the twelfth month, on the first of the month, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, take up a dirge (funeral poem to be sung) over Pharaoh king of Egypt and say to him,
‘You have compared yourself to a young lion among the nations,
3 Thus says the Lord God,
“I will spread out My net over you
9 I will also put fear into the hearts of many peoples when I bring your destruction [and captivity] among the nations, into countries which you have not known. 10 I will make many peoples appalled at you [at your judgment and your defeat], and their kings will be horribly afraid of you when I brandish My sword [of judgment] before them; they will tremble and shudder every moment, every man for his own life, on the day of your downfall.”
11 For thus says the Lord God, “The sword of the king of Babylon will come on you. 12 I will make your horde [of people] fall by the swords of the mighty—all of them are tyrants among the nations,
And they will devastate the pride and presumption of Egypt,
16 This is the dirge (funeral poem to be sung) and they shall sing it [for her]. The daughters of the nations shall sing it; for Egypt and for all her hordes they shall sing it,” says the Lord God.
17 In the twelfth year [after King Jehoiachin of Judah was taken into exile], on the fifteenth of the month, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 18 “Son of man, wail over the hordes of Egypt and cast them down, both her and the daughters of the powerful and majestic nations, to the nether world (the place of the dead), with those who go down to the pit;
20 They will fall among those who are slain by the sword. She (Egypt) is handed over to the sword; they have drawn her and all her hordes away [to judgment]. 21 The strong among the mighty rulers will say of him (Pharaoh) and his allies from the midst of Sheol, ‘They have gone down [defeated]; they lie still, the uncircumcised, slain by the sword.’
22 “Assyria is there with all her warriors; their graves are all around her. All of them are slain, fallen by the sword, 23 whose graves are set in the remotest parts of the pit and her army is all around her grave. All of them are slain, fallen by the sword, who spread terror in the land of the living.
24 “[cf]Elam [a conquest of Assyria] is there and all her hordes around her grave; all of them slain, fallen by the sword, who have gone down uncircumcised to the lower parts of the earth, who made their terror spread in the land of the living and bore their shame and defeat with those who went down to the pit. 25 They have made a bed for her among the slain with all her hordes. Her graves are around it; they are all uncircumcised (barbaric, boorish, crude), slain by the sword (for their terror had been spread in the land of the living), and they bore their disgrace with those who go down to the pit; they were laid among the slain.
26 “Meshech, Tubal, and all their hordes are there; their graves [cg]surround them. All of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword, for they spread their terror in the land of the living. 27 Nor do they lie beside the fallen heroes of the uncircumcised, who went down to Sheol with their weapons of war, whose swords were laid [with honors] under their heads. The punishment for their sins rested on their bones, for the terror of these heroes was once in the land of the living. 28 But you will be broken in the midst of the uncircumcised and you will lie [without honors] with those who are slain by the sword.
29 “Edom is there also, her kings and all her princes, who for all their power and strength are laid with those who were slain by the sword; they will lie [in shame and defeat] with the uncircumcised and with those who go down to the pit.
30 “The princes of the north are there also, all of them, and all the Sidonians, who in spite of the terror resulting from their power, have gone down in shame with the slain. So they lay down uncircumcised with those slain by the sword and bore their disgrace with those who go down to the pit.
31 “Pharaoh will see them, and he will be comforted for all his hordes slain by the sword—Pharaoh and all his army,” says the Lord God. 32 “Though I instilled a terror of him in the land of the living, yet he will be made to lie down among the uncircumcised along with those slain by the sword, even Pharaoh and all his hordes,” says the Lord God.
The Watchman’s Duty
33 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, speak to the sons of your people [who are exiled in Babylon] and say to them, ‘If I bring a sword on a land, and the people of the land take one man from among them and make him their watchman, 3 and he sees the sword coming on the land, and he blows the trumpet and warns the people, 4 then whoever hears the sound of the trumpet and does not take warning, and a sword comes and takes him away, his blood will be on his [own] head. 5 He heard the sound of the trumpet but did not take warning; his blood shall be on himself. But if he had taken warning, he would have saved his life. 6 But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet and the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any one of them, he is taken away because of his corruption and sin; but I will require his blood from the watchman’s hand.’
7 “Now as for you, son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; so you shall hear a message from My mouth and give them a warning from Me. 8 When I say to the wicked, ‘O wicked man, you will certainly die,’ and you do not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man will die because of his sin; but I will require his blood from your hand. 9 But if you on your part warn the wicked man to turn from his [evil] way and he does not turn from his [evil] way, he will die in his sin; but you have saved your life.
10 “Now as for you, son of man, say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus you have said, “Truly our transgressions and our sins are on us, and we are rotting away because of them; how then can we live?”’ 11 Say to them, ‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back (change your way of thinking), turn back [in repentance] from your evil ways! For why should you die, O house of Israel?’ 12 And you, son of man, say to the sons of your people, ‘The righteousness of the righteous man will not save him in the day of his transgression; and as for the wickedness of the wicked, he will not stagger because of it in the day that he turns from his wickedness, whereas a righteous man will not be able to live because of his [previous acts of] righteousness on the day when he commits sin.’ 13 When I say to the righteous that he will most certainly live, and he trusts in his [previous acts of] righteousness [to save him] and commits injustice, none of his righteous deeds will be remembered; but he will die for his injustice that he committed. 14 But when I say to the wicked, ‘You will certainly die,’ and he turns from his sin and practices that which is just (fair) and right— 15 if a wicked man returns [what he took as] a pledge, pays back what he had taken by robbery, walks in the statutes which ensure life, without committing injustice, he will certainly live; he will not die. 16 None of his sins that he has committed will be remembered against him. He has practiced that which is just (fair) and right; he will most certainly live.
17 “Yet your people [who are in exile in Babylon] say, ‘The way of the Lord is not right;’ but as for them, it is their own way that is not right. 18 When the righteous turns back from his righteousness and commits injustice, he will also die because of it. 19 But when a wicked man turns back from his wickedness and practices what is just (fair) and right, he will live because of it. 20 Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not right.’ O house of Israel, I will judge you, every one [of you] in accordance with his own ways!”
Word of Jerusalem’s Capture
21 In the twelfth year of our exile [in Babylon], on the fifth of the tenth month, a survivor from Jerusalem came to me, saying, “The city has been captured.” 22 Now the hand of the Lord had been upon me in the evening, before the survivor came. And He [ch]opened my mouth at the time he came to me in the morning; so my mouth was opened [in readiness] and I was no longer mute.
23 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 24 “Son of man, those [back in Palestine] who inhabit these ruins in the land of Israel are saying, ‘Abraham was [only] one man and he took possession of the land, but we are many; the land has [most certainly] been given to us [to possess] as property.’ 25 Therefore say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “You eat meat with the blood in it and raise your eyes to your idols and shed blood. Should you take possession of the land? 26 You rely on your sword [as your security]; you commit outrageous and disgraceful acts and each of you defiles his neighbor’s wife. Should you then take possession of the land?”’ 27 You shall say this to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “As I live, those who are in the ruins certainly will fall by the sword, and I will give whoever is in the open field to the [predatory] animals to be devoured, and those who are in strongholds and in caves will die of virulent diseases. 28 And I will make the land [of Israel] a desolation and a ruin, and her pride in her power will be brought to an end; and the mountains of Israel will be so deserted that no one will pass through. 29 Then they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord, when I make the land a desolation and a ruin because of all the atrocities which they have committed.”’
30 “But as for you, son of man, your people who talk about you by the walls and in the doorways of the houses say one to another, every one to his brother, ‘Come now and hear what the message is that comes from the Lord.’ 31 They come to you as people come, and they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words, but they do not practice them; for with their mouth they express loving devotion, but their heart goes after their (unlawful) gain. 32 Behold, you are to them like a love song by one who has a pleasant voice and plays well on a stringed instrument [merely to entertain them]; for they hear your words but do not practice them. 33 So when it comes to pass—as it most certainly will—then they will know [without any doubt] that a prophet has been among them.”
Prophecy against the Shepherds of Israel
34 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel. Prophesy and say to them, the [spiritual] shepherds, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Woe (judgment is coming) to the [spiritual] shepherds of Israel who have been feeding themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flock? 3 You eat the fat [the choicest of meat], and clothe yourselves with the wool, you slaughter the best of the livestock, but you do not feed the flock. 4 You have not strengthened those who are weak, you have not healed the sick, you have not bandaged the crippled, you have not brought back those gone astray, you have not looked for the lost; but you have ruled them with force and violence. 5 They were scattered because there was no shepherd, and when they were scattered they became food for all the predators of the field. 6 My flock wandered through all the mountains and on every high hill; My flock was scattered over all the face of the earth and no one searched or sought them.”’”
7 Therefore, you [spiritual] shepherds, hear the word of the Lord: 8 “As I live,” says the Lord God, “certainly because My flock has become prey, My flock has even become food for every predator of the field for lack of a shepherd, and My shepherds did not search for My flock, but rather the shepherds fed themselves and did not feed My flock; 9 therefore, you [spiritual] shepherds, hear the word of the Lord: 10 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am against the shepherds, and I will demand My flock from them and make them stop tending the flock, so that the shepherds cannot feed themselves anymore. I will rescue My flock from their mouth, so that they will not be food for them.”’”
The Restoration of Israel
11 For thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I Myself will search for My flock and seek them out. 12 As a shepherd cares for his sheep on the day that he is among his scattered flock, so I will care for My sheep; and I will rescue them from all the places to which they were scattered on a cloudy and gloomy day. 13 I will bring them out from the nations and gather them from the countries and bring them to their own land; and I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the streams, and in all the inhabited places of the land. 14 I will feed them in a good pasture, and their grazing ground will be on the mountain heights of Israel. There they will lie down on good grazing ground and feed in rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. 15 I will feed My flock and I will let them lie down [to rest],” says the Lord God. 16 “I will seek the lost, bring back the scattered, bandage the crippled, and strengthen the weak and the sick; but I will destroy the fat and the strong [who have become hard-hearted and perverse]. I will feed them with judgment and punishment.
17 “And as for you, My flock, thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I judge between one sheep and another, between the rams and the male goats [between the righteous and the unrighteous]. 18 Is it too little a thing for you that you [unrighteous ones who are well-fed] feed in the best pasture, yet you must trample down with your feet [of wickedness] the rest of your pastures? Or that you drink clear [still] water, yet you must muddy with your feet [of wickedness] the rest [of the water]? 19 As for My flock (the righteous), they must feed on what you trample with your feet and drink what you muddy with your feet!’”
20 Therefore thus says the Lord God to them, “Behold, I Myself will judge between the [well-fed] fat sheep and the lean sheep. 21 Because you push with side and shoulder, and gore with your horns all those that have become weak and sick until you have scattered them away, 22 therefore, I will rescue My flock, and they shall no longer be prey; and I will judge between one sheep [ungodly] and another [godly].
23 “Then I will appoint over them one shepherd and he will feed them, [a ruler like] My servant [ci]David; he will feed them and be their shepherd. 24 And I the Lord will be their God, and My servant David will be a prince among them; I the Lord have spoken.
25 “I will make a covenant of peace with them and will eliminate the predatory animals from the land so that they may live securely in the wilderness and sleep [safely] in the woods. 26 I will make them and the places around My hill (Jerusalem, Zion) a blessing. And I will make showers come down in their season; there will be [abundant] showers of blessing (divine favor). 27 Also the tree of the field will yield its fruit and the earth will yield its produce; and My people will be secure on their land. Then they will know [with confidence] that I am the Lord, when I have broken the bars of their yoke and have rescued them from the hand of those who made them slaves. 28 They will no longer be prey to the nations, and the predators of the earth will not devour them; but they will live safely, and no one will make them afraid [in the [cj]day of the Messiah’s reign]. 29 I will prepare for them a place renowned for planting [crops], and they will not again be victims of famine in the land, and they will not endure the insults of the nations any longer. 30 Then they will know [with assurance] that I the Lord their God, am with them and that they, the house of Israel, are My people,” says the Lord God. 31 “As for you, My flock, the flock of My pasture, you are men, and I am your God,” says the Lord God.
Prophecy against Mount Seir
35 Moreover, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, set your face against Mount Seir (Edom), and prophesy against it 3 and say to it, ‘Thus says the Lord God,
“Behold, Mount Seir, I am against you,
5 Because you [descendants of Esau] have had an everlasting hatred [for Jacob (Israel)] and you handed over the sons of Israel to the power of the sword at the time of their tragedy, at the time of their final punishment [the Babylonian conquest], 6 therefore, as I live,” says the Lord God, “I will hand you over to bloodshed, and bloodshed will pursue you since you have not hated bloodshed, bloodshed will pursue you. 7 I will make Mount Seir (Edom) a ruin and a desolate wasteland and I will cut off from it the one who passes through it and the one who returns. 8 I will fill its mountains with its slain; those killed by the sword will fall on your hills, and in your valleys, and in all your ravines. 9 I will make you an everlasting desolation and your [ck]cities will not be inhabited. Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
10 “Because you [descendants of Esau] have said, ‘These two nations [Israel and Judah] and these two lands shall be mine, and we will take possession of them,’ although the Lord was there, 11 therefore, as I live,” says the Lord God, “I will deal with you in accordance with the anger and envy you showed because of your hatred for them; and I will make Myself known among them [as Judge] when I judge and punish you. 12 Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord, and that I have heard all your scornful speeches which you have spoken against the mountains of Israel, saying, ‘They have been made a wasteland; they have been given to us as food.’ 13 So you have boasted and spoken arrogantly against Me, and have multiplied your words against Me; I have heard it.” 14 Thus says the Lord God, “While the whole earth rejoices, I will make you a wasteland. 15 As you rejoiced over the inheritance of the house of Israel because it was desolate, so I will do to you; you will be a desolate waste, O Mount Seir, and all Edom, all of it. Then they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”’
The Mountains of Israel to Be Blessed
36 “And you, son of man, prophesy to the mountains of Israel and say, ‘You mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord. 2 Thus says the Lord God, “Because the enemy has said of you, ‘Aha!’ and, ‘The ancient heights have become our property,’ 3 therefore prophesy and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “For good reason they have made you a desolation, and they crushed you from every side so that you would become a possession of the rest of the nations and you have become the talk and the whispering of the people.”’” 4 Therefore, O mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord God. Thus says the Lord God to the mountains and to the hills, to the ravines and to the valleys, to the desolate ruins and to the deserted cities which have become prey and a mockery to the rest of the nations which surround you, 5 therefore thus says the Lord God, “Most certainly in the fire of My jealousy (love for that which is Mine) I have spoken against the rest of the nations and against all Edom, who appropriated My land for themselves as a possession with wholehearted joy and with uttermost contempt, so that they might empty it out [and possess it] as prey.” 6 Therefore prophesy concerning the land of Israel and say to the mountains and to the hills, to the ravines and to the valleys, “Thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I have spoken in My jealousy (love for that which is Mine) and in My wrath because you have endured the [shameful] insults of the nations.’ 7 Therefore thus says the Lord God, ‘I have lifted up My hand and sworn [an oath] that the nations that are around you will themselves endure their [shameful] insults. 8 But you, O mountains of Israel, will put out your branches and bear your fruit to My people Israel; for they will soon come [home]. 9 For, behold, I am for you, and I will turn to you [in favor], and you shall be cultivated and sown. 10 I will multiply people on you, all the house of Israel, [indeed] all of it; the cities shall be inhabited and the ruins will be rebuilt. 11 I will multiply on you man and animal; and they will increase and be fruitful. And I will cause you to be inhabited as you were formerly, and I will do better [things] for you than at your beginning. Then you will know [with great confidence] that I am the Lord. 12 Yes, [O mountains of Israel] I will cause men—My people Israel—to walk on you and take possession of you, so that you will become their inheritance and never again bereave them of children.’
13 “Thus says the Lord God, ‘Because they say to you, “You [O land] are a devourer of people and have bereaved your nation of children,” 14 therefore you will no longer devour people, and no longer bereave your nation of children,’ says the Lord God. 15 I will not let you hear insults from the nations anymore, nor will you bear disgrace from the peoples any longer, nor will you cause your nation to stumble [through idolatry] any longer,” says the Lord God.’”
16 Moreover, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 17 “Son of man, when the house of Israel was living in their own land, they defiled it by their [own] behavior and by their [idolatrous] actions. Their conduct before Me was like the uncleanness of a woman during her [physical] impurity. 18 So I poured out My wrath on them for the blood which they had shed on the land and because they had defiled it with their idols. 19 Also I scattered them among the nations and they were dispersed throughout the countries. I judged and punished them in accordance with their conduct and their [idolatrous] behavior. 20 When they came to the nations wherever they went, they profaned My holy name, because it was said of them, ‘These are the people of the Lord; yet they have come out of His land.’ 21 But I had concern for My holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the nations where they went.
Israel to Be Renewed for His Name’s Sake
22 “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am about to act, but for My holy name, which you have profaned among the nations where you went. 23 I will vindicate the holiness of My great name which has been profaned among the nations, which you have profaned among them. Then the nations will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord,” says the Lord God, “when I prove Myself holy among you in their sight. 24 For I will [cl]take you from the nations and gather you from all the countries and bring you into your own land. 25 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your uncleanness and from all your idols. 26 Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you, and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put my Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My ordinances and do them. 28 You will live in the land that I gave to your fathers; and you will be My people, and I will be your God. 29 I will also save you from all your uncleanness, and I will call for the grain and make it abundant, and I will not bring famine on you. 30 I will multiply the fruit of the tree and the produce of the field, so that you will not suffer again the disgrace of famine among the nations. 31 Then you will remember [clearly] your [own] evil ways and your deeds that were not good, and you will loathe yourselves in your own sight for your sins and for your outrageous atrocities. 32 I am not doing this for your sake,” says the Lord God. “Let that be known to you. Be ashamed and humiliated for your [wicked] ways, O house of Israel!”
33 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “On the day that I cleanse you from all your sins I will also cause the cities [of Israel] to be inhabited, and the ruins will be rebuilt. 34 The desolate land will be cultivated instead of being a desolation in the sight of everyone who passes by. 35 Then they will say, ‘This land that was deserted and desolate has become like the garden of Eden; and the waste, desolate, and ruined cities are fortified and inhabited.’ 36 Then the nations that are left around you will know that I the Lord have rebuilt the ruined places and planted that which was desolate. I the Lord have spoken, and will do it.”
37 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “This too I will let the house of Israel ask Me to do for them: I will increase their people like a flock. 38 Like the flock for sacrifices, like the flock at Jerusalem during her appointed feasts, so will the desolate cities be filled with flocks of people. Then they will know [with confident assurance] that I am the Lord.”’”
Vision of the Valley of Dry Bones
37 The hand of the Lord was upon me, and He brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of the valley; and it was full of bones. 2 He caused me to pass all around them, and behold, there were very many [human bones] in the open valley; and lo, they were very dry. 3 And He said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, You know.” 4 Again He said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.’ 5 Thus says the Lord God to these bones, ‘Behold, I will make [cm]breath enter you so that you may come to life. 6 I will put sinews on you, make flesh grow back on you, cover you with skin, and I will put breath in you so that you may come alive; and you will know that I am the Lord.’”
7 So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a [thundering] noise, and behold, a rattling; and the bones came together, bone to its bone. 8 And I looked, and behold, there were sinews on the bones, and flesh grew and skin covered them; but there was no breath in them. 9 Then He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.”’” 10 So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they came to life and stood up on their feet, an exceedingly great army.
The Vision Explained
11 Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope is lost. We are completely cut off.’ 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I will open your graves and make you come up out of your graves, My people; and I will bring you [back home] to the land of Israel. 13 Then you will know [with confidence] that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves and made you come up out of your graves, My people. 14 I will put My [cn]Spirit in you and you will come to life, and I will place you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and fulfilled it,” says the Lord.’”
Reunion of Judah and Israel
15 The word of the Lord came again to me, saying, 16 “And you, son of man, take a stick and write on it, ‘For Judah and for the children of Israel, his companions’; then take another stick and write on it, ‘For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim and all the house of Israel, his companions.’ 17 Then join them together into one stick, so that they may become one in your hand. 18 When your people say to you, ‘Will you not tell us what you mean by these?’ 19 say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am going to take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel, his companions; and I will join the stick of Judah with it and make them one stick, and they will be one in My hand.”’ 20 The sticks on which you write shall be in your hand before their eyes. 21 Say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am going to take the children of Israel from among the nations where they have gone, and I will [co]gather them from every side and bring them into their own land; 22 and I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one [cp]king will be king over all of them; and they will no longer be two nations, and will no longer be divided into two kingdoms. 23 They will no longer defile themselves with their idols, or with their detestable things, or with any of their transgressions; but I will save them from all their transgressions in which they have sinned, and I will cleanse them. So they will be My people, and I will be their God.
The Davidic Kingdom
24 “[cq]My servant David will be king over them, and they all will have one shepherd. They will also walk in My ordinances and keep My statutes and observe them. 25 They will live in the land where your fathers lived, [the land] that I gave to My servant Jacob, and they will live there, they and their children and their children’s children, forever; and My servant David will be their leader forever. 26 I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant with them. And I will place them and multiply them, and will put My sanctuary in their midst forever. 27 My dwelling place also will be with them; and I will be their God, and they will be My people. 28 Then the nations will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord who sets apart and sanctifies Israel [for holy use], when My sanctuary is in their midst forever.”’”
Prophecy about Gog and Future Invasion of Israel
38 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, set your face against Gog of the land of Magog, the chief ruler of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him, 3 and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am against you, O Gog, chief ruler of Meshech and Tubal. 4 I will turn you around and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you out, and all your army, horses and horsemen, all of them magnificently clothed in full armor, a great horde with [cr]buckler (small shield) and [large] shield, all of them wielding swords; 5 Persia (Iran), Cush (Ethiopia), and Put (Libya, N. Africa) with them, all of them with shield and helmet; 6 Gomer and all its troops; Beth-togarmah from the remote parts of the north and all its troops—many peoples with you.
7 You [Gog] be prepared; prepare yourself, you and all your hordes that are assembled around you, and be a guard and a lookout for them. 8 After many days you will be summoned [for service]; in the latter years you shall come into the land that is restored from [the ravages of] the sword, where people have been gathered out of many nations to the mountains of Israel, which had been a continual wasteland; but its people were brought out of the nations, and they are living securely, all of them. 9 You will go up [against them], you will come like a storm; you shall be like a cloud covering the land, you and all your troops, and many peoples with you.”
10 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “It will come about on that day that thoughts will come into your mind, and you will devise an evil plan, 11 and you will say, ‘I will go up against an open country; I will come against those who are at rest and peaceful, who live securely, all of them living without walls and having neither bars nor gates, 12 to take spoil and seize plunder, to turn your hand against the ruins which are now inhabited, and against the people who are gathered from the nations, who have acquired cattle and goods, who live at the [cs]center of the world [Israel].’ 13 Sheba and Dedan and the merchants of Tarshish (southern Spain), with all its young lions (villages) will say to you, ‘Have you come to take spoil? Have you assembled your hordes [of fighting men] to seize plunder, to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to take great spoil?’”’
14 “Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say to Gog, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “On that day when My people Israel live securely, will you not become aware of it [and become active]? 15 You will come from your place in the remote parts of the north, you and many nations with you, all of them riding horses, a great horde, and a mighty army; 16 and you will go up against My people Israel like a cloud to cover the land. In the last days it will come about that I will bring you against My land, so that the nations may know Me when I show Myself holy through you before their eyes, O Gog.”
17 ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Are you the one of whom I spoke in former days through My servants, the prophets of Israel, who prophesied in those days for many years that I would bring you (Gog) against them? 18 It will come about on that day, when Gog comes against the land of Israel,” says the Lord God, “that My wrath will rise and show on My face. 19 In My zeal and in My blazing rage I declare that on that day there will most certainly be a [ct]great earthquake in the land of Israel, 20 so that the fishes of the sea, the birds of the sky, the animals of the field, all the creatures that crawl on the earth, and all the men that are on the face of the earth will tremble and shake at My presence; the mountains will crumble, the steep places will fall, and every wall will fall to the ground. 21 I will call for a sword against Gog throughout all My mountains,” says the Lord God. “Every man’s (invading soldier’s) sword will be against his brother (ally) [in panic and confusion]. 22 With pestilence and with bloodshed I will enter into judgment with Gog; and I will rain on him torrents of rain with [great] hailstones, [cu]fire and brimstone on his hordes and on the many nations that are with him. 23 Thus I shall magnify Myself and demonstrate My greatness and sanctify Myself, and I will be recognized and will make Myself known in the sight of many nations; they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”’
Prophecy against Gog—Invaders Destroyed
39 “And you, son of man, prophesy against Gog, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am against you, O Gog, chief prince (ruler) of Meshech and Tubal; 2 and I will turn you around and lead you along, and bring you up from the remotest parts of the north, and I will bring you against the mountains of Israel. 3 I will strike your bow from your left hand and make your arrows to fall out of your right hand. 4 You will fall [dead] on the mountains of Israel, you and all your troops and the nations who are with you. I will give you to every kind of predatory bird and animal of the field as food. 5 You will fall in the open field, for I have spoken,” says the Lord God. 6 “I will also send fire on Magog and on those who live securely in the coastlands; and they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
7 “I will make My holy name known in the midst of My people Israel, and I will not let them profane My holy name anymore; and the nations will know that I am the Lord, the Holy One of Israel. 8 Behold, it is coming and it will be done,” says the Lord God. “That is the day of which I have spoken.
9 And [when you, Gog, no longer exist] those who live in the cities of Israel will go out and make fires with the weapons and burn them, both the [large] shields and the [cv]bucklers (small shields), the bows and the arrows, the war clubs and the spears; and for seven years they will burn them. 10 They will not take any wood from the field or cut down and gather [any] firewood from the forests, because they will make their fires using the weapons. And they will take the spoil from those who despoiled them and seize the plunder of those who plundered them,” says the Lord God.
11 “And on that day I will give Gog a place for burial there in Israel, the valley of those who pass through east of the sea, and it will block the way of those who would pass through. So they will [cw]bury Gog there with all his hordes, and they will call it the Valley of Hamon-gog (the multitude of Gog). 12 For seven months the house of Israel will be burying them in order to cleanse the land. 13 Yes, all the people of the land will bury them; and it will be to their renown on the day that I appear in My glory and brilliance,” says the Lord God. 14 “They will elect men who will constantly go through the land, [men commissioned] to bury those who were passing through, those bodies that lie unburied on the surface of the ground, in order to cleanse it. At the end of seven months they will do a search. 15 As those who pass through the land pass through and anyone sees a human bone, he will set up a marker beside it, until the buriers have buried it in the Valley of Hamon-gog. 16 And even the name of the city will be Hamonah. In this manner they shall cleanse the land.”’
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