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Ezekiel 16.53 - 18.32

53 I will restore their fortunes, the fortunes of Sodom and her daughters and the fortunes of Samaria and her daughters, and I will restore your own fortunes along with theirs, 54in order that you may bear your disgrace and be ashamed of all that you have done, becoming a consolation to them. 55As for your sisters, Sodom and her daughters shall return to their former state, Samaria and her daughters shall return to their former state, and you and your daughters shall return to your former state. 56Was not your sister Sodom a byword in your mouth in the day of your pride, 57before your wickedness was uncovered? Now you are a mockery to the daughters of Aram* and all her neighbours, and to the daughters of the Philistines, those all around who despise you. 58You must bear the penalty of your lewdness and your abominations, says the Lord.

An Everlasting Covenant

59 Yes, thus says the Lord God: I will deal with you as you have done, you who have despised the oath, breaking the covenant; 60yet I will remember my covenant with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish with you an everlasting covenant. 61Then you will remember your ways, and be ashamed when I* take your sisters, both your elder and your younger, and give them to you as daughters, but not on account of my* covenant with you. 62I will establish my covenant with you, and you shall know that I am the Lord, 63in order that you may remember and be confounded, and never open your mouth again because of your shame, when I forgive you all that you have done, says the Lord God.

The Two Eagles and the Vine

17The word of the Lord came to me: 2O mortal, propound a riddle, and speak an allegory to the house of Israel. 3Say: Thus says the Lord God:
A great eagle, with great wings and long pinions,
   rich in plumage of many colours,
   came to the Lebanon.
He took the top of the cedar,
4   broke off its topmost shoot;
he carried it to a land of trade,
   set it in a city of merchants.
5 Then he took a seed from the land,
   placed it in fertile soil;
a plant* by abundant waters,
   he set it like a willow twig.
6 It sprouted and became a vine,
   spreading out, but low;
its branches turned towards him,
   its roots remained where it stood.
So it became a vine;
   it brought forth branches,
   put forth foliage.


7 There was another great eagle,
   with great wings and much plumage.
And see! This vine stretched out
   its roots towards him;
it shot out its branches towards him,
   so that he might water it.
From the bed where it was planted
8   it was transplanted
to good soil by abundant waters,
   so that it might produce branches
   and bear fruit
   and become a noble vine.
9Say: Thus says the Lord God:
Will it prosper?
Will he not pull up its roots,
   cause its fruit to rot* and wither,
   its fresh sprouting leaves to fade?
No strong arm or mighty army will be needed
   to pull it from its roots.
10 When it is transplanted, will it thrive?
When the east wind strikes it,
   will it not utterly wither,
   wither on the bed where it grew?

11 Then the word of the Lord came to me: 12Say now to the rebellious house: Do you not know what these things mean? Tell them: The king of Babylon came to Jerusalem, took its king and its officials, and brought them back with him to Babylon. 13He took one of the royal offspring and made a covenant with him, putting him under oath (he had taken away the chief men of the land), 14so that the kingdom might be humble and not lift itself up, and that by keeping his covenant it might stand. 15But he rebelled against him by sending ambassadors to Egypt, in order that they might give him horses and a large army. Will he succeed? Can one escape who does such things? Can he break the covenant and yet escape? 16As I live, says the Lord God, surely in the place where the king resides who made him king, whose oath he despised, and whose covenant with him he broke—in Babylon he shall die. 17Pharaoh with his mighty army and great company will not help him in war, when ramps are cast up and siege-walls built to cut off many lives. 18Because he despised the oath and broke the covenant, because he gave his hand and yet did all these things, he shall not escape. 19Therefore, thus says the Lord God: As I live, I will surely return upon his head my oath that he despised, and my covenant that he broke. 20I will spread my net over him, and he shall be caught in my snare; I will bring him to Babylon and enter into judgement with him there for the treason he has committed against me. 21All the pick* of his troops shall fall by the sword, and the survivors shall be scattered to every wind; and you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken.

Israel Exalted at Last

22 Thus says the Lord God:
I myself will take a sprig
   from the lofty top of a cedar;
   I will set it out.
I will break off a tender one
   from the topmost of its young twigs;
I myself will plant it
   on a high and lofty mountain.
23 On the mountain height of Israel
   I will plant it,
in order that it may produce boughs and bear fruit,
   and become a noble cedar.
Under it every kind of bird will live;
   in the shade of its branches will nest
   winged creatures of every kind.
24 All the trees of the field shall know
   that I am the Lord.
I bring low the high tree,
   I make high the low tree;
I dry up the green tree
   and make the dry tree flourish.
I the Lord have spoken;
   I will accomplish it.

Individual Retribution

18The word of the Lord came to me: 2What do you mean by repeating this proverb concerning the land of Israel, ‘The parents have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge’? 3As I live, says the Lord God, this proverb shall no more be used by you in Israel. 4Know that all lives are mine; the life of the parent as well as the life of the child is mine: it is only the person who sins that shall die.

5 If a man is righteous and does what is lawful and right— 6if he does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbour’s wife or approach a woman during her menstrual period, 7does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, commits no robbery, gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment, 8does not take advance or accrued interest, withholds his hand from iniquity, executes true justice between contending parties, 9follows my statutes, and is careful to observe my ordinances, acting faithfully—such a one is righteous; he shall surely live, says the Lord God.

10 If he has a son who is violent, a shedder of blood, 11who does any of these things (though his father* does none of them), who eats upon the mountains, defiles his neighbour’s wife, 12oppresses the poor and needy, commits robbery, does not restore the pledge, lifts up his eyes to the idols, commits abomination, 13takes advance or accrued interest; shall he then live? He shall not. He has done all these abominable things; he shall surely die; his blood shall be upon himself.

14 But if this man has a son who sees all the sins that his father has done, considers, and does not do likewise, 15who does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbour’s wife, 16does not wrong anyone, exacts no pledge, commits no robbery, but gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment, 17withholds his hand from iniquity,* takes no advance or accrued interest, observes my ordinances, and follows my statutes; he shall not die for his father’s iniquity; he shall surely live. 18As for his father, because he practised extortion, robbed his brother, and did what is not good among his people, he dies for his iniquity.

19 Yet you say, ‘Why should not the son suffer for the iniquity of the father?’ When the son has done what is lawful and right, and has been careful to observe all my statutes, he shall surely live. 20The person who sins shall die. A child shall not suffer for the iniquity of a parent, nor a parent suffer for the iniquity of a child; the righteousness of the righteous shall be his own, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be his own.

21 But if the wicked turn away from all their sins that they have committed and keep all my statutes and do what is lawful and right, they shall surely live; they shall not die. 22None of the transgressions that they have committed shall be remembered against them; for the righteousness that they have done they shall live. 23Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked, says the Lord God, and not rather that they should turn from their ways and live? 24But when the righteous turn away from their righteousness and commit iniquity and do the same abominable things that the wicked do, shall they live? None of the righteous deeds that they have done shall be remembered; for the treachery of which they are guilty and the sin they have committed, they shall die.

25 Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is unfair.’ Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way unfair? Is it not your ways that are unfair? 26When the righteous turn away from their righteousness and commit iniquity, they shall die for it; for the iniquity that they have committed they shall die. 27Again, when the wicked turn away from the wickedness they have committed and do what is lawful and right, they shall save their life. 28Because they considered and turned away from all the transgressions that they had committed, they shall surely live; they shall not die. 29Yet the house of Israel says, ‘The way of the Lord is unfair.’ O house of Israel, are my ways unfair? Is it not your ways that are unfair?

30 Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, all of you according to your ways, says the Lord God. Repent and turn from all your transgressions; otherwise iniquity will be your ruin.* 31Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed against me, and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? 32For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, says the Lord God. Turn, then, and live.

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14 July 2018

From the oremus Bible Browser http://bible.oremus.org v2.2.8 14 July 2018.