The word of the LORD came to me:
"What do you mean 1by repeating this proverb concerning the land of Israel, 2'The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set on edge'?
3As I live, declares the Lord GOD, 4this proverb shall no more be used by you in Israel.
Behold, all souls are mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is mine: 5the soul who sins shall die.
"If a man is righteous and does 6what is just and right--
if he 7does not eat upon the mountains or 8lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, 9does not defile his neighbor's wife 10or approach 11a woman in her time of menstrual impurity,
12does not oppress anyone, but 13restores to the debtor his pledge, 14commits no robbery, 15gives his bread to the hungry 16and covers the naked with a garment,
17does not lend at interest 18or take any profit, withholds his hand from injustice, 19executes true justice between man and man,
20walks in my statutes, and keeps my rules by acting faithfully--he is righteous; 21he shall surely live, declares the Lord GOD.
"If he fathers a son who is violent, 22a shedder of blood, who does any of these things
(though he himself did none of these things), 23who even eats upon the mountains, 24defiles his neighbor's wife,
oppresses the poor and needy, 25commits robbery, 26does not restore the pledge, 27lifts up his eyes to the idols, 28commits abomination,
29lends at interest, and takes profit; shall he then live? He shall not live. He has done all these abominations; he shall surely die; 30his blood shall be upon himself.
"Now suppose this man fathers a son who sees all the sins that his father has done; he sees, and does not do likewise:
he does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbor's wife,
does not oppress anyone, 31exacts no pledge, 32commits no robbery, 33but gives his bread to the hungry 34and covers the naked with a garment,
withholds his hand from iniquity, takes no interest or profit, obeys my rules, 35and walks in my statutes; he shall not die for his father's iniquity; 36he shall surely live.
As for his father, because he practiced extortion, robbed his brother, and did what is not good among his people, 37behold, he shall die for his iniquity.
"Yet you say, 38'Why should not the son suffer for the iniquity of the father?' When the son has done 39what is just and right, and has been careful to observe all my statutes, 40he shall surely live.
41The soul who sins shall die. 42The son shall not suffer for the iniquity of the father, nor the father suffer for the iniquity of the son. 43The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, 44and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.
45"But if a wicked person turns away from all his sins that he has committed and keeps all my statutes and does 46what is just and right, 47he shall surely live; he shall not die.
48None of the transgressions that he has committed shall be remembered against him; for the righteousness that he has done he shall live.
49Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked, declares the Lord GOD, and not rather that he should turn from his way and live?
50But when a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice and does the same abominations that the wicked person does, shall he live? 51None of the righteous deeds that he has done shall be remembered; for 52the treachery of which he is guilty and the sin he has committed, for them he shall die.
53"Yet you say, 'The way of the Lord is not just.' Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way not just? Is it not your ways that are not just?
54When a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice, he shall die for it; for the injustice that he has done he shall die.
Again, 55when a wicked person turns away from the wickedness he has committed and does what is just and right, he shall save his life.
Because he considered and turned away from all the transgressions that he had committed, he shall surely live; he shall not die.
Yet the house of Israel says, 'The way of the Lord is not just.' O house of Israel, are my ways not just? Is it not your ways that are not just?
"Therefore 56I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, declares the Lord GOD. 57Repent and turn from all your transgressions, 58lest iniquity be your ruin.
59Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed, and 60make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! 61Why will you die, O house of Israel?
62For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord GOD; 63so turn, and live."