Ezekiel 16; Ezekiel 17

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Ezekiel 16

1 The LORD's word came to me:
2 Human one, show Jerusalem her detestable practices.
3 Say, The LORD God proclaims to Jerusalem: By origin and birth you are from the land of Canaan. Your father was an Amorite, your mother a Hittite.
4 This is how you were treated on the day you were born: Your umbilical cord wasn't cut, you weren't washed clean with water or rubbed with salt, and you weren't wrapped in blankets.
5 No one took pity or cared enough to do any of these things for you. You were despised on the day of your birth and thrown out on the open field.
6 When I happened to come by, I saw you flailing about in your blood. I said to you while you were still bloody, "Live!"
7 I helped you to flourish like a young plant in the field, and you grew tall and became wonderfully endowed. Your breasts were firm, your hair beautifully thick. And you were completely naked.
8 When I passed by you, I realized that you were ready for love. So I spread my cloak over you and covered your nakedness. I made a solemn promise and entered into a covenant with you, and you became mine. This is what the LORD God says.
9 Then I washed you with water, rinsed off your blood, and poured oil on you.
10 I clothed you with colorful garments, put fine sandals on you, wrapped your head in linen, and covered you with jewels.
11 I adorned you with fine jewelry, and put bracelets on your wrists and a necklace around your neck.
12 I put a ring in your nose, earrings in your ears, and a beautiful crown on your head.
13 I adorned you with gold and silver, and your garments were made of the finest linen and brocade. You ate the finest flour, honey, and oil. You became very beautiful, fit for royalty.
14 Among the nations you were famous for your beauty. It was perfect because of the splendor that I had given you. This is what the LORD God says.
15 But you trusted in your beauty and traded on your fame. At every opportunity, you seduced all who came by.
16 You took some of your clothing to make colorful shrines and prostituted yourself in them.
17 You took the beautiful gold and silver jewelry that I had given to you, and you made male images for yourself and prostituted yourself with them.
18 You took your fine garments and clothed them. You set my oil and incense before them.
19 You set my food that I had given you to eat—fine wheat, oil, and honey—before them as a pleasing aroma. This is what the LORD God says.
20 You took your sons and daughters, which you had borne to me, and you sacrificed these to them so they could consume them. Was this promiscuity of yours a small thing?
21 You slaughtered my sons and placed them in the fire for them!
22 In all your detestable practices and promiscuities, you didn't remember the days of your infancy when you lay completely naked, flailing about in your blood.
23 After all your wickedness—doom, doom to you, proclaims the LORD God—
24 you built a pavilion for yourself and set up platforms in every square.
25 At every crossroad you built your platform and degraded your beauty by spreading your legs to all comers. And so you encouraged even more promiscuity.
26 You prostituted yourself with the Egyptians, your neighbors with the large sexual organs, and as you added to your seductions, you provoked me to anger.
27 So I used my power against you, cut off your allowance, and gave you up to the passions of the Philistine women who had been confounded by your infamous ways and had rejected you.
28 Still not satisfied, you prostituted yourself to the Assyrians, but they weren't enough for you either.
29 So you prostituted yourself with the Babylonians, the land of traders, but again you weren't satisfied.
30 How sick was your heart—the LORD God proclaims—that you could do all these things, the deeds of a hardened prostitute.
31 But you weren't like an ordinary prostitute! When you built your pavilion at the head of every street and made your platform in every square, you refused to be paid.
32 You are like an adulterous wife: you take in strangers instead of your husband.
33 Ordinary prostitutes are given gifts, but you gave your gifts to all your lovers. From every direction you even bribed them to come to you for your sexual favors.
34 As a prostitute, you were more perverse than other women. No one approached you for sexual favors, but you yourself gave gifts instead of receiving them. You are perversion itself!
35 Therefore, you prostitute, hear the LORD's word!
36 The LORD God proclaims: You were in a constant state of arousal and exposed yourself when you acted like a prostitute with your lovers and with the idols to which you gave your children's blood.
37 Therefore, I will now gather all of your lovers whom you pleased, the ones you loved and the ones you rejected. I will gather them against you from all around, and I will expose you to them. They will see it all.
38 I will convict you of adultery and murder, and I will hand you over in bloody fury and zeal.
39 I will hand you over to them, and they will tear down your pavilion and destroy your platforms. They will strip you of your garments, take your beautiful jewels, and they will leave you completely naked.
40 They will bring an army against you, pelt you with stones, and slaughter you with their swords.
41 They will burn down your houses and execute judgments against you in the sight of many women. I will bring an end to your prostitution; indeed, you will never again give payment.
42 When I've satisfied my anger, and my rage has turned away from you, I will be calm and no longer angry.
43 Because you didn't remember your youthful days, and infuriated me with all these things, I will hold you accountable for what you've done. This is what the LORD God says. Have you not added bad reputation to all your detestable acts?
44 Now everyone who speaks in proverbs will say this about you: "Like mother, like daughter."
45 You are your mother's daughter! She loathed her husband and also her children. You are just like your sisters too! They also loathed their husbands and children. Your mother was a Hittite, and your father was an Amorite.
46 Your older sister is Samaria, who lives with her daughters in the north. Your younger sister is Sodom, who lives with her daughters in the south.
47 You didn't follow in their ways or engage in their detestable practices in any small way. You were far more destructive.
48 As surely as I live, says the LORD God, not even your sister Sodom and her daughters did what you and your daughters have done!
49 This is the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were proud, had plenty to eat, and enjoyed peace and prosperity; but she didn't help the poor and the needy.
50 They became haughty and did detestable things in front of me, and I turned away from them as soon as I saw it.
51 Samaria didn't sin even half as much as you did. You've so outstripped her in multiplying your detestable practices, with all the detestable things you've done, that you've even made your sisters seem innocent.
52 Bear your disgrace, which has actually improved your sisters' position. Because your sins and detestable acts were greater than theirs, they are now more righteous than you. Be ashamed, and bear the disgrace of making your sisters righteous!
53 I will improve the circumstances of Sodom and her daughters and the circumstances of Samaria and her daughters. And what's left of your fortune will go to them,
54 so that you will bear your disgrace and be humiliated by all that you've done to make them feel better.
55 Then your sister Sodom and her daughters will return to their former state, and your sister Samaria and her daughters will return to their former state. You and your daughters will return to your former state,
56 but you will no longer talk about your sister Sodom as in your haughty days
57 before your wickedness was exposed. You are now the reproach of all the daughters of Edom and all those around her, including the daughters of the Philistines. They mock you on every side.
58 You alone must bear your bad reputation and your detestable ways. This is what the LORD says.
59 The LORD God proclaims: I will do to you just as you have done, despising solemn pledges and breaking covenants.
60 Nevertheless, I will remember my covenant with you when you were young, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you.
61 And you will remember your ways and be ashamed, when in spite of your covenant I take your big sisters and little sisters from you and give them back to you as daughters.
62 I myself will establish my covenant with you, and you will know that I am the LORD.
63 Then you will remember and be ashamed, and you won't even open your mouth because of your shame, after I've forgiven you for all that you've done. This is what the LORD God says.
Copyright © 2011 Common English Bible

Ezekiel 17

1 The LORD's word came to me:
2 Human one, compose a riddle and a parable about the house of Israel.
3 Say, The LORD God proclaims: The great eagle with great wings, long feathers, and full, colorful plumage came to Lebanon and took the top branch of the cedar.
4 He plucked a twig from the cedar's crown, brought it to the land of traders, and set it down in a city of merchants.
5 He took a native seed and planted it in a prepared field, placing it like a willow beside plentiful water.
6 It grew and became a low-spreading vine. Its foliage turned toward him, and its roots developed under him. And so it became a vine, and it produced branches and sent out its shoots.
7 Now there was another great eagle with great wings and much plumage. This vine bent its roots and turned its branches toward him so that it might draw more water from him than from its own bed,
8 a good field with plentiful water where it was planted to grow branches, bear fruit, and become a splendid vine.
9 Say, The LORD God proclaims: Will it thrive? Won't he tear out its roots, strip its fruit, and cause all the leaves of its branches to wither? It will dry up, and no one will need a strong arm or a mighty army to uproot it.
10 Though it is planted, will it thrive? When the east wind touches it, won't it completely wither? On the bed in which it was planted, it will wither away.
11 The LORD's word came to me:
12 Say now to the rebellious household: Don't you know what these things mean? Say: The king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and carried its king and its officers away with him to Babylon.
13 Then he took a prince from the royal line, made an agreement with him, and made him take a solemn pledge of loyalty. He also took away the land's officials.
14 Thus it would be a lowly kingdom, not asserting its own interests but observing the agreement so that it would survive.
15 But the prince rebelled against him and sent messengers to Egypt to supply him with horses and a great army. Can such a person succeed? Can one who does these things escape? Can he overturn the agreement and escape capture?
16 As surely as I live, says the LORD God, he will die in Babylon, in the place of the king who gave him the authority to rule, whose solemn pledge he scorned and whose agreement he overturned.
17 Pharaoh won't help him. There will be no strong force or mighty army in battle when siege ramps are set up and towers are built to eliminate many lives.
18 He scorned the solemn pledge and overturned the agreement! Even though he made a promise, he did all these things, and he won't escape capture.
19 So now the LORD God proclaims: As surely as I live, it was my solemn pledge that he scorned and my agreement that he overturned, and I will hold him accountable.
20 I will spread my net over him, and he will be caught in my trap. I will bring him to Babylon, and I myself will enter into judgment with him there for rebelling against me.
21 All his elite fighters along with all his troops will fall by the sword, and those who are left will be scattered to the winds. Then you will know that I, the LORD, have spoken.
22 The LORD God proclaims: I myself will take one of the top branches from the tall cedar. I will pluck a tender shoot from its crown, and I myself will plant it on a very high and lofty mountain.
23 On Israel's mountainous highlands I will plant it, and it will send out branches and bear fruit. It will grow into a mighty cedar. Birds of every kind will nest in it and find shelter in the shade of its boughs.
24 Then all the trees in the countryside will know that I, the LORD, bring down the tall tree and raise up the lowly tree, and make the green tree wither and the dry tree bloom. I, the LORD, have spoken, and I will do it.
Copyright © 2011 Common English Bible