8 And the word of the Lord came to me:
9Mortal, prophesy and say: Thus says the Lord; Say:
A sword, a sword is sharpened,
it is also polished;
10 it is sharpened for slaughter,
honed to flash like lightning!
How can we make merry?
You have despised the rod
and all discipline.*
11 The sword* is given to be polished,
to be grasped in the hand;
it is sharpened, the sword is polished,
to be placed in the slayers hand.
12 Cry and wail, O mortal,
for it is against my people;
it is against all Israels princes;
they are thrown to the sword,
together with my people.
Ah! Strike the thigh!
13For consider: What! If you despise the rod, will it not happen?* says the Lord God.
14 And you, mortal, prophesy;
strike hand to hand.
Let the sword fall twice, thrice;
it is a sword for killing.
A sword for great slaughter
it surrounds them;
15 therefore hearts fail
and many stumble.
At all their gates I have set
the point* of the sword.
Ah! It is made for flashing,
it is polished* for slaughter.
16 Attack to the right!
Engage to the left!
wherever your edge is directed.
17 I too will strike hand to hand,
I will satisfy my fury;
I the Lord have spoken.
18 The word of the Lord came to me: 19Mortal, mark out two roads for the sword of the king of Babylon to come; both of them shall issue from the same land. And make a signpost, make it for a fork in the road leading to a city; 20mark out the road for the sword to come to Rabbah of the Ammonites or to Judah and to* Jerusalem the fortified. 21For the king of Babylon stands at the parting of the way, at the fork in the two roads, to use divination; he shakes the arrows, he consults the teraphim,* he inspects the liver. 22Into his right hand comes the lot for Jerusalem, to set battering-rams, to call out for slaughter, for raising the battle cry, to set battering-rams against the gates, to cast up ramps, to build siege-towers. 23But to them it will seem like a false divination; they have sworn solemn oaths; but he brings their guilt to remembrance, bringing about their capture.
24 Therefore, thus says the Lord God: Because you have brought your guilt to remembrance, in that your transgressions are uncovered, so that in all your deeds your sins appearbecause you have come to remembrance, you shall be taken in hand.*
25 As for you, vile, wicked prince of Israel,
you whose day has come,
the time of final punishment,
26 thus says the Lord God:
Remove the turban, take off the crown;
things shall not remain as they are.
Exalt that which is low,
abase that which is high.
27 A ruin, a ruin, a ruin
I will make it!
(Such has never occurred.)
Until he comes whose right it is;
to him I will give it.
28 As for you, mortal, prophesy, and say, Thus says the Lord God concerning the Ammonites, and concerning their reproach; say:
A sword, a sword! Drawn for slaughter,
polished to consume,* to flash like lightning.
29 Offering false visions for you,
divining lies for you,
they place you over the necks
of the vile, wicked ones
those whose day has come,
the time of final punishment.
30 Return it to its sheath!
In the place where you were created,
in the land of your origin,
I will judge you.
31 I will pour out my indignation upon you,
with the fire of my wrath
I will blow upon you.
I will deliver you into brutish hands,
those skilful to destroy.
32 You shall be fuel for the fire,
your blood shall enter the earth;
you shall be remembered no more,
for I the Lord have spoken.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011