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They are saying, “No need to build houses! The city is the pot, and we are the meat.”[a](A) Therefore prophesy against them, son of man, prophesy! Then the spirit of the Lord fell upon me and told me to say: Thus says the Lord: This is how you talk, house of Israel. I know the things that come into your mind! You have slain many in this city, filled its streets with the slain. Therefore thus says the Lord God: The slain whom you piled up in it, that is the meat, the pot is the city. But you I will bring out of it.(B) You fear the sword—that sword I will bring upon you—oracle of the Lord God.(C) I will bring you out of the city, hand you over to foreigners, and execute judgments against you. 10 By the sword you shall fall. At the borders of Israel I will judge you so that you will know that I am the Lord. 11 The city shall not be a pot for you, nor shall you be meat within it. At the borders of Israel I will judge you,(D) 12 so you shall know that I am the Lord, whose statutes you did not follow, whose ordinances you did not keep. Instead, you acted according to the ordinances of the nations around you.

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  1. 11:3 No need to build houses…meat: this advice is based on the conviction that invincible Jerusalem will protect its citizens from further danger just as a pot shields the meat inside from the fire. The poorer citizens of Jerusalem and the refugees from nearby villages can now appropriate the property abandoned by the city’s wealthier upper class when they were deported (v. 15). The metaphor of the pot and its contents reappears in chap. 24.