Then the Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the gate of the house of the LORD that faces east. There at the entrance to the gate were twenty-five men, and I saw among them Jaazaniah son of Azzur and Pelatiah son of Benaiah, leaders of the people.
The LORD said to me, "Son of man, these are the men who are plotting evil and giving wicked advice in this city.
They say, 'Will it not soon be time to build houses? This city is a cooking pot, and we are the meat.'
Therefore prophesy against them; prophesy, son of man."
Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon me, and he told me to say: "This is what the LORD says: That is what you are saying, O house of Israel, but I know what is going through your mind.
You have killed many people in this city and filled its streets with the dead.
"Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: The bodies you have thrown there are the meat and this city is the pot, but I will drive you out of it.
You fear the sword, and the sword is what I will bring against you, declares the Sovereign LORD.
I will drive you out of the city and hand you over to foreigners and inflict punishment on you.
You will fall by the sword, and I will execute judgment on you at the borders of Israel. Then you will know that I am the LORD.
This city will not be a pot for you, nor will you be the meat in it; I will execute judgment on you at the borders of Israel.
And you will know that I am the LORD, for you have not followed my decrees or kept my laws but have conformed to the standards of the nations around you."
Now as I was prophesying, Pelatiah son of Benaiah died. Then I fell facedown and cried out in a loud voice, "Ah, Sovereign LORD! Will you completely destroy the remnant of Israel?"
The word of the LORD came to me:
"Son of man, your brothers--your brothers who are your blood relatives and the whole house of Israel--are those of whom the people of Jerusalem have said, 'They are far away from the LORD; this land was given to us as our possession.'
"Therefore say: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Although I sent them far away among the nations and scattered them among the countries, yet for a little while I have been a sanctuary for them in the countries where they have gone.'
"Therefore say: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: I will gather you from the nations and bring you back from the countries where you have been scattered, and I will give you back the land of Israel again.'
"They will return to it and remove all its vile images and detestable idols.
I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh.
Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. They will be my people, and I will be their God.
But as for those whose hearts are devoted to their vile images and detestable idols, I will bring down on their own heads what they have done, declares the Sovereign LORD."
Then the cherubim, with the wheels beside them, spread their wings, and the glory of the God of Israel was above them.
The glory of the LORD went up from within the city and stopped above the mountain east of it.
The Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the exiles in Babylonia in the vision given by the Spirit of God. Then the vision I had seen went up from me,
and I told the exiles everything the LORD had shown me.
The word of the LORD came to me:
"Son of man, you are living among a rebellious people. They have eyes to see but do not see and ears to hear but do not hear, for they are a rebellious people.
"Therefore, son of man, pack your belongings for exile and in the daytime, as they watch, set out and go from where you are to another place. Perhaps they will understand, though they are a rebellious house.
During the daytime, while they watch, bring out your belongings packed for exile. Then in the evening, while they are watching, go out like those who go into exile.
While they watch, dig through the wall and take your belongings out through it.
Put them on your shoulder as they are watching and carry them out at dusk. Cover your face so that you cannot see the land, for I have made you a sign to the house of Israel."
So I did as I was commanded. During the day I brought out my things packed for exile. Then in the evening I dug through the wall with my hands. I took my belongings out at dusk, carrying them on my shoulders while they watched.
In the morning the word of the LORD came to me:
"Son of man, did not that rebellious house of Israel ask you, 'What are you doing?'
"Say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: This oracle concerns the prince in Jerusalem and the whole house of Israel who are there.'
Say to them, 'I am a sign to you.' "As I have done, so it will be done to them. They will go into exile as captives.
"The prince among them will put his things on his shoulder at dusk and leave, and a hole will be dug in the wall for him to go through. He will cover his face so that he cannot see the land.