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.”
Parable of Two Eagles and a Vine
17 The word of the Lord came to me: 2 c“Son of man, dpropound a riddle, and speak a parable to the house of Israel; 3 say, Thus says the Lord God: eA great eagle fwith great wings and long pinions, frich in plumage of many colors, came gto Lebanon hand took the top of the cedar. 4 He broke off the topmost of its young twigs and carried it to a land of trade and set it in a city of merchants. 5 Then he took of the seed of the land iand planted it in fertile soil.10 He placed it beside abundant waters. jHe set it like a willow twig, 6 and it sprouted and became a klow lspreading vine, and its branches turned toward him, and its roots remained where it stood. So it became a vine and produced branches and put out boughs.
7 m“And there was another great eagle with great wings and much plumage, mand behold, this vine bent its roots toward him and shot forth its branches toward him from nthe bed where it was planted, that he might water it. 8 iIt had been planted on good soil by abundant waters, that it might produce branches and bear fruit and become a noble vine.
9 “Say, Thus says the Lord God: mWill it thrive? Will he not pull up its roots and cut off its fruit, so that it withers, so that all its fresh sprouting leaves wither? It will not take a strong arm or many people to pull it from its roots. 10 Behold, it is planted; will it thrive? oWill it not utterly wither when the east wind strikes it—wither away on the bed where it sprouted?”
11 Then the word of the Lord came to me: 12 “Say now to pthe rebellious house, qDo you not know what these things mean? Tell them, behold, rthe king of Babylon came to Jerusalem, and took her king and her princes and brought them to him to Babylon. 13 sAnd he took one of the royal offspring11 tand made a covenant with him, uputting him under oath (vthe chief men of the land he had taken away), 14 that the kingdom might be humble and not lift itself up, and keep his covenant that it might stand. 15 wBut he rebelled against him by sending his ambassadors xto Egypt, that they might give him horses and a large army. yWill he thrive? Can one escape who does such things? Can he zbreak the covenant and yet escape?
16 a“As I live, declares the Lord God, surely bin the place where the king dwells cwho made him king, whose oath he despised, and whose covenant with him he broke, in Babylon he shall die. 17 dPharaoh with his mighty army and great company will not help him in war, ewhen mounds are cast up and siege walls built to cut off many lives. 18 He despised the oath in breaking the covenant, and behold, he gave his hand and did all these things; he shall not escape. 19 Therefore thus says the Lord God: As I live, surely it is my oath that he despised, and my covenant that he broke. I will return it upon his head. 20 fI will spread my net over him, and he shall be taken in my snare, and I will bring him to Babylon gand enter into judgment with him there hfor the treachery he has committed against me. 21 And all the pick12 of his troops shall fall by the sword, iand the survivors shall be scattered to every wind, and you shall know that jI am the Lord; I have spoken.”
22 Thus says the Lord God: k“I myself will take a sprig from the lofty top of the cedar and will set it out. lI will break off from the topmost of its young twigs a tender one, and mI myself will plant it on a high and lofty mountain. 23 nOn the mountain height of Israel will I plant it, that it may bear branches and produce fruit and become a noble cedar. oAnd under it will dwell every kind of bird; in the shade of its branches birds of every sort will nest. 24 And all the trees of the field shall know that I am the Lord; pI bring low the high tree, and make high the low tree, dry up qthe green tree, and make qthe dry tree flourish. rI am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it.”
Taming the Tongue
3 cNot many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. 2 For dwe all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, ehe is a perfect man, fable also to bridle his whole body. 3 If we put gbits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. 4 Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. 5 So also the tongue is a small member, yet hit boasts of great things.
How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! 6 And ithe tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, jstaining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life,1 and set on fire by hell.2 7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, kfull of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people lwho are made in the likeness of God. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers,3 these things ought not to be so. 11 Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and salt water? 12 Can a fig tree, my brothers, bear olives, or a grapevine produce figs? Neither can a salt pond yield fresh water.
Wisdom from Above
13 Who is wise and understanding among you? mBy his good conduct let him show his works nin the meekness of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter ojealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. 15 This is not pthe wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, qdemonic. 16 For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. 17 But rthe wisdom from above is first pure, then speaceable, gentle, open to reason, tfull of mercy and good fruits, uimpartial and vsincere. 18 And wa harvest of righteousness xis sown in peace by those who make peace.