Ezekiel 21:1-17 Revised Standard Version (RSV)
The Drawn Sword of God
21 [a] The word of the Lord came to me: 2 “Son of man, set your face toward Jerusalem and preach 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 forth my sword out of its sheath, and will cut off from you both righteous and wicked. 4 Because I will cut off from you both righteous and wicked, therefore my sword shall go out of its sheath against all flesh from south to north; 5 and all flesh shall know that I the Lord have drawn my sword out of its sheath; it shall not be sheathed again. 6 Sigh therefore, son of man; sigh with breaking heart and bitter grief before their eyes. 7 And when they say to you, ‘Why do you sigh?’ you shall say, ‘Because of the tidings. When it comes, every heart will melt and all hands will be feeble, every spirit will faint and all knees will be weak as water. Behold, it comes and it will be fulfilled,’” says the Lord God.
8 And the word of the Lord came to me: 9 “Son of man, prophesy and say, Thus says the Lord, Say:
A sword, a sword is sharpened
Or do we make mirth? You have despised the rod, my son, with everything of wood. 11 So the sword is given to be polished, that it may be handled; it is sharpened and polished to be given into the hand of the slayer. 12 Cry and wail, son of man, for it is against my people; it is against all the princes of Israel; they are delivered over to the sword with my people. Smite therefore upon your thigh. 13 For it will not be a testing—what could it do if you despise the rod?” says the Lord God.
14 “Prophesy therefore, son of man; clap your hands and let the sword come down twice, yea thrice, the sword for those to be slain; it is the sword for the great slaughter, which encompasses them, 15 that their hearts may melt, and many fall at all their gates. I have given the glittering sword; ah! it is made like lightning, it is polished[b] for slaughter. 16 Cut sharply to right[c] and left where your edge is directed. 17 I also will clap my hands, and I will satisfy my fury; I the Lord have spoken.”