Ezekiel 20 Lexham English Bible (LEB)
God’s Dealings with Israel for His Name’s Sake
20 And then in the seventh year, in the fifth month, on the tenth day of the month, men from the elders of Israel came to consult Yahweh, and they sat before me.[a] 2 And the word of Yahweh came[b] to me, saying,[c] 3 “Son of man,[d] speak with the elders of Israel, and you must say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord Yahweh: “Are you coming to consult me? As I live,[e] I will surely not allow myself[f] to be consulted by you!”’ declares[g] the Lord Yahweh. 4 Will you judge them? Will you judge them, son of man?[h] Make known to them the detestable things of their ancestors.[i] 5 And you must say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord Yahweh: “On the day of my choosing Israel I swore[j] to the offspring of the house of Jacob, and I made myself known to them in the land of Egypt, and I swore[k] to them, saying,[l] ‘I am Yahweh your God.’ 6 On that day I swore[m] to them to bring them out from the land of Egypt to the land that I had searched out for them, flowing with milk and honey—it is the most beautiful of all of the lands. 7 Then I said to them, ‘Let each one throw away the detestable things of his eyes, and you must not make yourselves unclean with the idols of Egypt! I am Yahweh your God.’ 8 But they rebelled against me, and they were not willing to listen to me; each one did not throw away[n] the detestable things of their eyes; and they did not abandon[o] the idols of Egypt, and I decided to pour out my rage on them, to fully vent my anger against them in the midst of the land of Egypt.
9 “But[p] I acted for the sake of my name to keep it from being profaned[q] before the eyes of the nations among whom they lived,[r] where I made known to them before their eyes, to bring them out from the land of Egypt. 10 And I brought them out from the land of Egypt, and I brought them to the desert, 11 and I gave my statutes to them, and my regulations I made known to them, which, if a person does them, then he will live by them. 12 And also my Sabbaths I gave to them to be a sign between me and between them so they would know[s] that I, Yahweh, am the one sanctifying them.
13 “But[t] in the desert the house of Israel rebelled against me; they did not walk in my statutes,[u] and they rejected my regulations, which, if a person does them, he will live by them, and they greatly profaned my Sabbaths, and I decided to pour out my rage on them in the desert to destroy them, 14 and I acted for the sake of my name, that it not be profaned before the eyes of the nations before whom I brought them out.[v] 15 And also I myself swore[w] to them in the desert not to bring them into the land that I had given to them, flowing with milk and honey—it is the most beautiful of all of the lands— 16 because they despised my judgments, and they did not walk in my statutes,[x] and my Sabbaths they profaned, for their heart was going after their idols. 17 But my eye took pity on them by not destroying them, and I did not completely destroy them[y] in the desert.
18 “And I said to their children in the desert, ‘You must not go in the statutes of your parents;[z] you must not keep their regulations, and you must not make yourself unclean with their idols. 19 I, Yahweh, am your God, so go in my statutes and keep my regulations and do them. 20 And treat my Sabbaths as holy, and they will be a sign between me and between you that you may know[aa] that I, Yahweh, am your God.’ 21 But the children rebelled against me; they did not walk in my statutes,[ab] and they did not observe my regulations,[ac] which if a person does them, then he will live by them. My Sabbaths they desecrated, and I decided to pour out my rage on them, to finish my anger against them in the desert. 22 But I withheld my hand, and I acted for the sake of my name not to be profaned before the eyes of the nations before whom I had brought them out before their eyes. 23 What is more, I swore[ad] to them in the desert to scatter them among the nations and to disperse them in the lands, 24 because they did not do my regulations, and my statutes they despised, and my Sabbaths they profaned, and their eyes were after the idols of their ancestors.[ae] 25 And in turn I gave to them rules that were not good and regulations by which they will not live.[af] 26 And I defiled them through their gifts in sacrificing all of the first offspring of the womb, in order that[ag] I will cause them to be stunned, so that they will know that I am Yahweh.
27 “Therefore speak to the house of Israel, son of man,[ah] and you must say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord Yahweh: “Again in this your ancestors blasphemed me at[ai] their display of infidelity toward me.”’[aj] 28 And I brought them to the land that I swore[ak] to give[al] to them, and they saw every high hill and every leafy tree, and they offered their sacrifices, and they presented there the provocation of their offering, and they gave there their fragrant incense offering, and they poured out their libations there. 29 And I said to them, ‘What is the high place[am] to which you are going?’ And it is called[an] Bamah until this day. 30 Therefore thus say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord Yahweh: “In the way of your ancestors[ao] will you defile yourself, and after their vile idols will you prostitute yourselves? 31 And when you lift up your gifts, sacrificing your children[ap] through the fire, you are defiling yourself through all of your idols until today,[aq] and will I let myself[ar] be consulted by you, house of Israel?”’ As I live,”[as] declares[at] the Lord Yahweh, “I will not let myself[au] be consulted by you! 32 And what you are planning,[av] surely it will not be—that you are saying, ‘Let us be like the nations, like the clans[aw] of the lands, serving wood and stone!’[ax]
33 “As I live,”[ay] declares[az] the Lord Yahweh, “surely[ba] with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm and with rage pouring forth[bb] I will reign as king over you! 34 And I will bring you from the peoples, and I will gather you from the countries to which you were scattered with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm and with rage poured out. 35 Then I will bring you to the desert of the peoples, and I will execute justice on you there face to face. 36 Just as[bc] I executed justice on your ancestors[bd] in the desert of the land of Egypt, likewise I will execute justice on you!” declares[be] the Lord Yahweh. 37 “And I will make you pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant. 38 And I will purge the rebels from among you and the ones transgressing against me; I will bring them out from the land where they are living as aliens,[bf] but into the land of Israel they will not come, and then you will know that I am Yahweh.
39 And you, house of Israel, thus says the Lord Yahweh: “Let each one go serve his idols now and after, if you are not listening to me, but my holy name[bg] you will not profane any longer with your gifts and with your idols.
40 “For on my holy mountain,[bh] on the mountain of the height of Israel,” declares[bi] the Lord Yahweh, “there all of the house of Israel will serve me, all of them,[bj] in the land. I will take pleasure in them, and there I will accept your contributions and the best of your portions with all of your holy objects. 41 I will accept you as a fragrant incense offering[bk] when I bring you out from the peoples and I gather you from the lands to which you were scattered, and I will show myself holy among you before the eyes of the nations. 42 And you will know that I am Yahweh when I bring you to the land of Israel, to the land that I swore[bl] to give to your ancestors. 43 And you will remember there your ways, and all of your deeds by which you were made unclean,[bm] and you will feel a loathing for yourself[bn] for all of your evils that you have done. 44 And you will know that I am Yahweh when I deal with you[bo] for the sake of my name and not according to your evil ways[bp] or according to[bq] your corrupted deeds, house of Israel,” declares[br] the Lord Yahweh.
45 [bs] And the word of Yahweh came[bt] to me, saying,[bu] 46 “Son of man,[bv] set your face toward the way of the south,[bw] and preach to the south, and prophesy against the forest of the territory of the Negev. 47 And you must say to the forest of the Negev, ‘Hear the word of Yahweh, thus says the Lord Yahweh: “Look! I am kindling against you a fire, and it will devour in you every fresh tree and every dry tree; the blaze of the flame will not be quenched, and all the surfaces from the south to the north will be scorched by it. 48 And all creatures will see that I, Yahweh, I kindled it—it will not be quenched!”’” 49 Then I said, “Ah, Lord Yahweh, they are saying about me, ‘Is he not posing a parable?’”