Judah's Captivity Symbolized
12 The word of the Lord came to me: 2 j“Son of man, you dwell in the midst of ka rebellious house, lwho have eyes to see, but see not, who have ears to hear, but hear not, for they are ka rebellious house. 3 As for you, son of man, prepare for yourself man exile's baggage, and go into exile by day nin their sight. You shall go like an exile from your place to another place nin their sight. oPerhaps they will understand, though1 they are a rebellious house. 4 You shall bring out your baggage by day in their sight, as baggage for exile, and you shall go out yourself pat evening in their sight, as those do who must go into exile. 5 In their sight qdig through the wall, and bring your baggage out through it. 6 In their sight you shall lift the baggage upon your shoulder and carry it out at dusk. You shall cover your face that you may not see the land, for I have made you ra sign for the house of Israel.”
7 sAnd I did as I was commanded. tI brought out my baggage by day, as baggage for exile, and in the evening I dug through the wall with my own hands. I brought out my baggage at dusk, carrying it on my shoulder in their sight.
8 In the morning the word of the Lord came to me: 9 u“Son of man, has not the house of Israel, vthe rebellious house, said to you, w‘What are you doing?’ 10 Say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: This oracle concerns2 xthe prince in Jerusalem and all the house of Israel who are in it.’3 11 Say, y‘I am a sign for you: zas I have done, so shall it be done to them. They shall go into exile, into captivity.’ 12 aAnd the prince who is among them shall lift his baggage upon his shoulder at dusk, and shall go out. bThey shall dig through the wall to bring him out through it. cHe shall cover his face, that he may not see the land with his eyes. 13 dAnd I will spread my net over him, and he shall be taken in my snare. And eI will bring him to Babylon, the land of the Chaldeans, eyet he shall not see it, and he shall die there. 14 fAnd I will scatter toward every wind all who are around him, his helpers and all his troops, gand I will unsheathe the sword after them. 15 hAnd they shall know that I am the Lord, when I disperse them among the nations and scatter them among the countries. 16 iBut I will let a few of them escape from the sword, from famine and pestilence, that they may declare all their abominations among the nations where they go, jand may know that I am the Lord.”
17 And the word of the Lord came to me: 18 k“Son of man, leat your bread with quaking, and drink water with trembling and with anxiety. 19 And say to the people of the land, Thus says the Lord God concerning the inhabitants of Jerusalem in the land of Israel: mThey shall eat their bread with anxiety, mand drink water in dismay. In this way nher land will be stripped of all it contains, oon account of the violence of all those who dwell in it. 20 pAnd the inhabited cities shall be laid waste, and the land shall become a desolation; and you shall know that I am the Lord.”
21 And the word of the Lord came to me: 22 “Son of man, qwhat is this proverb that you4 have about the land of Israel, saying, r‘The days grow long, and every vision comes to nothing’? 23 Tell them therefore, ‘Thus says the Lord God: I will put an end to this proverb, and they shall no more use it as a proverb in Israel.’ But say to them, sThe days are near, and the fulfillment5 of every vision. 24 tFor there shall be no more any ufalse vision or flattering divination within the house of Israel. 25 For I am the Lord; I will speak vthe word that I will speak, and it will be performed. wIt will no longer be delayed, but in your days, xO rebellious house, I will speak the word and perform it, declares the Lord God.”
26 And the word of the Lord came to me: 27 “Son of man, behold, they of the house of Israel say, y‘The vision that he sees is zfor many days from now, and he prophesies of times far off.’ 28 Therefore say to them, Thus says the Lord God: wNone of my words will be delayed any longer, vbut the word that I speak will be performed, declares the Lord God.”
False Prophets Condemned
13 The word of the Lord came to me: 2 a“Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel, who are prophesying, and say to those bwho prophesy from their own hearts: ‘Hear the word of the Lord!’ 3 Thus says the Lord God, Woe to the foolish prophets who follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing! 4 Your prophets have been like jackals among ruins, O Israel. 5 cYou have not gone up into the breaches, or built up a wall for the house of Israel, that it might stand in battle in the day of the Lord. 6 dThey have seen false visions and lying divinations. They say, ‘Declares the Lord,’ ewhen the Lord has not sent them, and yet they expect him to fulfill their word. 7 Have you not seen a false vision and uttered a lying divination, fwhenever you have said, ‘Declares the Lord,’ although I have not spoken?”
8 Therefore thus says the Lord God: “Because you have uttered falsehood and seen lying visions, therefore behold, gI am against you, declares the Lord God. 9 My hand will be against the prophets who see false visions and who give lying divinations. They shall not be in the council of my people, hnor be enrolled in the register of the house of Israel, inor shall they enter the land of Israel. jAnd you shall know that I am the Lord God. 10 Precisely because they have misled my people, ksaying, ‘Peace,’ when there is no peace, and because, when the people build a wall, lthese prophets smear it with whitewash,1 11 say to those who smear it with whitewash that it shall fall! mThere will be a deluge of rain, and you, O great hailstones, will fall, and a stormy wind break out. 12 And when the wall falls, will it not be said to you, ‘Where is the coating with which you smeared it?’ 13 Therefore thus says the Lord God: mI will make a stormy wind break out in my wrath, mand there shall be a deluge of rain in my anger, and great hailstones in wrath to make a full end. 14 And I will break down the wall that you have smeared with whitewash, and bring it down to the ground, so that its foundation will be laid bare. When it falls, you shall perish in the midst of it, nand you shall know that I am the Lord. 15 Thus will I spend my wrath upon the wall and upon those who have smeared it with whitewash, and I will say to you, The wall is no more, nor those who smeared it, 16 the prophets of Israel who prophesied concerning Jerusalem kand saw visions of peace for her, when there was no peace, declares the Lord God.
17 “And you, son of man, oset your face against pthe daughters of your people, qwho prophesy out of their own hearts. Prophesy against them 18 and say, Thus says the Lord God: Woe to the women rwho sew magic bands upon all wrists, and smake veils for the heads of persons of every stature, in tthe hunt for souls! Will you hunt down souls belonging to my people and keep your own souls alive? 19 You have profaned me among my people ufor handfuls of barley vand for pieces of bread, putting to death souls who should not die and keeping alive souls who should not live, by your lying to my people, who listen to lies.
20 “Therefore thus says the Lord God: Behold, wI am against xyour magic bands with which you hunt the souls like birds, and I will tear them from your arms, and I will let the souls whom you hunt go free, the souls like birds. 21 Your veils also I will tear off and ydeliver my people out of your hand, and they shall be no more in your hand as prey, zand you shall know that I am the Lord. 22 aBecause you have disheartened the righteous falsely, although I have not grieved him, and byou have encouraged the wicked, that che should not turn from his evil way to save his life, 23 dtherefore you shall no more see false visions nor practice divination. I will deliver my people out of your hand. And you shall know that I am the Lord.”
Idolatrous Elders Condemned
14 Then certain of the eelders of Israel came to me eand sat before me. 2 And the word of the Lord came to me: 3 f“Son of man, these men have taken their idols into their hearts, and set gthe stumbling block of their iniquity before their faces. hShould I indeed let myself be consulted by them? 4 Therefore speak to them and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: Any one of the house of Israel who takes his idols into his heart and sets the stumbling block of his iniquity before his face, and yet comes to the prophet, iI the Lord will answer him as he comes with the multitude of his idols, 5 jthat I may lay hold of the hearts of the house of Israel, kwho are all estranged from me through their idols.
6 “Therefore say to the house of Israel, Thus says the Lord God: lRepent and turn away from your idols, and turn away your faces from all your abominations. 7 For any one of the house of Israel, or of the strangers who sojourn in Israel, kwho separates himself from me, taking his idols into his heart and putting the stumbling block of his iniquity before his face, and yet comes to a prophet to consult me through him, mI the Lord will answer him myself. 8 And nI will set my face against that man; I owill make him a sign and a byword nand cut him off from the midst of my people, pand you shall know that I am the Lord. 9 And if the prophet is deceived and speaks a word, qI, the Lord, have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand against him and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel. 10 And they shall bear their punishment1—the punishment of the prophet and the punishment of the inquirer shall be alike— 11 that the house of Israel may no more go astray from me, nor rdefile themselves anymore with all their transgressions, sbut that they may be my people and I may be their God, declares the Lord God.”
Jerusalem Will Not Be Spared
12 And the word of the Lord came to me: 13 t“Son of man, when a land sins against me uby acting faithlessly, and I stretch out my hand against it and vbreak its supply2 of bread and send famine upon it, and wcut off from it man and beast, 14 xeven if these three men, yNoah, zDaniel, and aJob, were in it, bthey would deliver but their own lives by their righteousness, declares the Lord God.
15 c“If I cause wild beasts to pass through the land, and they ravage it, dand it be made desolate, so that no one may pass through because of the beasts, 16 even if these three men were in it, eas I live, declares the Lord God, they would deliver neither sons nor daughters. They alone would be delivered, but fthe land would be desolate.
17 “Or gif I bring a sword upon that land and say, Let a sword pass through the land, hand I cut off from it man and beast, 18 xthough these three men were in it, as I live, declares the Lord God, they would deliver neither sons nor daughters, but they alone would be delivered.
19 “Or iif I send a pestilence into that land and pour out my wrath upon it with blood, to cut off from it man and beast, 20 even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, declares the Lord God, they would deliver neither son nor daughter. They would deliver but their own lives by their righteousness.
21 “For thus says the Lord God: How much more jwhen I send upon Jerusalem my four disastrous acts of judgment, ksword, lfamine, mwild beasts, and npestilence, to cut off from it man and beast! 22 But behold, osome survivors will be left in it, sons and daughters who will be brought out; behold, when they come out to you, and pyou see their ways and their deeds, you will be consoled for the disaster that I have brought upon Jerusalem, for all that I have brought upon it. 23 They will console you, when you see their ways and their deeds, and you shall know that I have not done without cause all that I have done in it, declares the Lord God.”
Jerusalem, a Useless Vine
15 And the word of the Lord came to me: 2 q“Son of man, how does rthe wood of the vine surpass any wood, the vine branch that is among the trees of the forest? 3 Is wood taken from it to make anything? Do people take sa peg from it to hang any vessel on it? 4 tBehold, it is given to the fire for fuel. When the fire has consumed both ends of it, and the middle of it is charred, is it useful for anything? 5 uBehold, when it was whole, it was used for nothing. How much less, when the fire has consumed it and it is charred, can it ever be used for anything! 6 Therefore thus says the Lord God: vLike the wood of the vine among the trees of the forest, twhich I have given to the fire for fuel, so have I given up the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 7 wAnd I will set my face against them. Though xthey escape from the fire, the fire shall yet consume them, yand you will know that I am the Lord, wwhen I set my face against them. 8 zAnd I will make the land desolate, because athey have acted faithlessly, declares the Lord God.”
The Lord's Faithless Bride
16 Again the word of the Lord came to me: 2 b“Son of man, cmake known to Jerusalem her abominations, 3 and say, Thus says the Lord God to Jerusalem: Your origin and your birth are of the land of the Canaanites; your father was an dAmorite and your mother a eHittite. 4 And as for your birth, fon the day you were born your cord was not cut, nor were you washed with water to cleanse you, nor rubbed with salt, nor wrapped in swaddling cloths. 5 No eye pitied you, to do any of these things to you out of compassion for you, gbut you were cast out on the open field, for you were abhorred, fon the day that you were born.
6 “And when I passed by you and saw you wallowing hin your blood, I said to you hin your blood, ‘Live!’ I said to you hin your blood, ‘Live!’ 7 iI made you flourish like a plant of the field. And you grew up and became tall jand arrived at full adornment. Your breasts were formed, and your hair had grown; yet kyou were naked and bare.
8 “When I passed by you again and saw you, behold, you were at the age for love, and lI spread the corner of my garment over you and covered your nakedness; I made my vow to you mand entered into a covenant with you, declares the Lord God, nand you became mine. 9 Then I bathed you with water and washed off your blood from you and oanointed you with oil. 10 pI clothed you also with embroidered cloth and shod you with fine leather. I wrapped you in fine linen and covered you with silk.1 11 qAnd I adorned you with ornaments and rput bracelets on your wrists and a chain on your neck. 12 And I put a ring on your nose and earrings in your ears and a beautiful crown on your head. 13 Thus you were adorned with gold and silver, and your clothing was of fine linen and silk and embroidered cloth. sYou ate fine flour and honey and oil. tYou grew exceedingly beautiful and advanced to royalty. 14 And uyour renown went forth among the nations because of your beauty, for it was perfect through the splendor that I had bestowed on you, declares the Lord God.
15 v“But you trusted in your beauty wand played the whore2 because of your renown xand lavished your whorings3 on any passerby; your beauty4 became his. 16 You took some of your garments and made for yourself colorful shrines, and on them played the whore. The like has never been, nor ever shall be.5 17 You also took yyour beautiful jewels of my gold and of my silver, which I had given you, and zmade for yourself images of men, and with them played the whore. 18 And you took your embroidered garments to cover them, aand set my oil and my incense before them. 19 bAlso my bread that I gave you—sI fed you with fine flour and oil and honey—you set before them for ca pleasing aroma; and so it was, declares the Lord God. 20 dAnd you took your sons and your daughters, whom you had borne to me, and ethese you sacrificed to them to be devoured. Were your whorings so small a matter 21 that you slaughtered my children and delivered them up as an offering by fire to them? 22 And in all your abominations and your whorings you did not remember fthe days of your youth, gwhen you were naked and bare, wallowing in your blood.
23 “And after all your wickedness (woe, woe to you! declares the Lord God), 24 you built yourself ha vaulted chamber and made yourself a lofty place in every square. 25 At the head of every street iyou built your lofty place and made jyour beauty an abomination, koffering yourself6 to any passerby and multiplying your whoring. 26 wYou also played the whore lwith the Egyptians, your lustful neighbors, mmultiplying your whoring, nto provoke me to anger. 27 Behold, therefore, I stretched out my hand against you oand diminished your allotted portion pand delivered you to the greed of your enemies, qthe daughters of the Philistines, who were ashamed of your lewd behavior. 28 wYou played the whore also rwith the Assyrians, because you were not satisfied; yes, you played the whore with them, and still you were not satisfied. 29 You multiplied your whoring also with the trading land tof Chaldea, and even with this you were not satisfied.
30 “How sick is your heart,7 declares the Lord God, because you did all these things, the deeds of a brazen prostitute, 31 building your vaulted chamber at the head of every street, and making your lofty place in every square. Yet you were not like a prostitute, ubecause you scorned payment. 32 Adulterous wife, who receives strangers instead of her husband! 33 Men give gifts to all prostitutes, vbut you gave your gifts to all your lovers, bribing them to come to you from every side with your whorings. 34 So you were different from other women in your whorings. No one solicited you to play the whore, and vyou gave payment, while no payment was given to you; therefore you were different.
35 “Therefore, O prostitute, hear the word of the Lord: 36 Thus says the Lord God, Because your lust was poured out and your nakedness uncovered in your whorings with your lovers, and with all your abominable idols, wand because of the blood of your children that you gave to them, 37 therefore, behold, xI will gather all your lovers with whom you took pleasure, all those you loved and yall those you hated. zI will gather them against you from every side aand will uncover your nakedness to them, that bthey may see all your nakedness. 38 cAnd I will judge you das women who commit adultery and eshed blood are judged, and bring upon you the blood of wrath and jealousy. 39 And I will give you into their hands, and they shall throw down your fvaulted chamber and break down gyour lofty places. hThey shall strip you of your clothes and take iyour beautiful jewels and leave you jnaked and bare. 40 kThey shall bring up a crowd against you, land they shall stone you and cut you to pieces with their swords. 41 lAnd they shall mburn your houses and nexecute judgments upon you in the sight of many women. oI will make you stop playing the whore, and pyou shall also give payment no more. 42 qSo will I satisfy my wrath on you, and my jealousy shall depart from you. I will be calm and will no more be angry. 43 Because you have not remembered rthe days of your youth, but have enraged me with all these things, therefore, behold, sI have returned your deeds upon your head, declares the Lord God. Have you not tcommitted lewdness in addition to all your abominations?
44 “Behold, everyone uwho uses proverbs will use this proverb about you: ‘Like mother, like daughter.’ 45 You are the daughter of your mother, who loathed her husband and her children; and you are the sister of vyour sisters, who loathed their husbands and their children. wYour mother was a Hittite and wyour father an Amorite. 46 And xyour elder sister is Samaria, who lived with her daughters to the north of you; and yyour younger sister, who lived to the south of you, is Sodom with her daughters. 47 zNot only did you walk in their ways and do according to their abominations; within a very little time ayou were more corrupt than they in all your ways. 48 bAs I live, declares the Lord God, your sister cSodom and her daughters have not done as you and your daughters have done. 49 Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, dexcess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy. 50 They were haughty and edid an abomination before me. So fI removed them, when I saw it. 51 gSamaria has not committed half your sins. You have committed more abominations than they, and hhave made your sisters appear righteous by all the abominations that you have committed. 52 iBear your disgrace, you also, for you have intervened on behalf of your sisters. Because of your sins in which you acted more abominably than they, they are more in the right than you. So be ashamed, you also, and bear your disgrace, for you have made your sisters appear righteous.
53 j“I will restore their fortunes, both the fortunes of Sodom and her daughters, and the fortunes of Samaria and her daughters, and I will restore your own fortunes in their midst, 54 that you may bear your disgrace kand be ashamed of all that you have done, lbecoming a consolation to them. 55 As for your sisters, Sodom and her daughters shall return to their former state, jand Samaria and her daughters shall return mto their former state, jand you and your daughters shall return mto your former state. 56 Was not your sister Sodom a byword in your mouth nin the day of your pride, 57 before your wickedness was uncovered? Now you have become oan object of reproach for the daughters of Syria8 and all those around her, and for pthe daughters of the Philistines, qthose all around who despise you. 58 rYou bear the penalty of your lewdness and your abominations, declares the Lord.
The Lord's Everlasting Covenant
59 “For thus says the Lord God: I will deal with you as you have done, you swho have despised the oath in breaking the covenant, 60 yet tI will remember my covenant with you uin the days of your youth, vand I will establish for you an everlasting covenant. 61 wThen you will remember your ways xand be ashamed when you take yyour sisters, both your elder and your younger, and I give them to you zas daughters, but not on account of9 the covenant with you. 62 I will establish my covenant with you, aand you shall know that I am the Lord, 63 that you may remember and be confounded, and bnever open your mouth again because of your shame, when I atone for you for all that you have done, declares the Lord God.”