1 The Lord spoke to me. 2 "Mortal man," he said, "denounce the prophets of Israel who make up their own prophecies. Tell them to listen to the word of the Lord." 3 This is what the Sovereign Lord says: "These foolish prophets are doomed! They provide their own inspiration and invent their own visions. 4 People of Israel, your prophets are as useless as foxes living among the ruins of a city. 5 They don't guard the places where the walls have crumbled, nor do they rebuild the walls, and so Israel cannot be defended when war comes on the day of the Lord. 6 Their visions are false, and their predictions are lies. They claim that they are speaking my message, but I have not sent them. Yet they expect their words to come true! 7 I tell them: Those visions you see are false, and the predictions you make are lies. You say that they are my words, but I haven't spoken to you!" 8 So the Sovereign Lord says to them, "Your words are false, and your visions are lies. I am against you. 9 I am about to punish you prophets who have false visions and make misleading predictions. You will not be there when my people gather to make decisions; your names will not be included in the list of the citizens of Israel; you will never return to your land. Then you will know that I am the Sovereign Lord. 10 "The prophets mislead my people by saying that all is well. All is certainly not well! My people have put up a wall of loose stones, and then the prophets have come and covered it with whitewash. 11 Tell the prophets that their wall is going to fall down. I will send a pouring rain. Hailstones will fall on it, and a strong wind will blow against it. 12 The wall will collapse, and everyone will ask you what good the whitewash did." 13 Now this is what the Sovereign Lord says: "In my anger I will send a strong wind, pouring rain, and hailstones to destroy the wall. 14 I intend to break down the wall they whitewashed, to shatter it, and to leave the foundation stones bare. It will collapse and kill you all. Then everyone will know that I am the Lord. 15 "The wall and those who covered it with whitewash will feel the force of my anger. Then I will tell you that the wall is gone and so are those who whitewashed it - 16 those prophets who assured Jerusalem that all was well, when all was not well!" The Sovereign Lord has spoken. 17 The Lord said, "Now, mortal man, look at the women among your people who make up predictions. Denounce them 18 and tell them what the Sovereign Lord is saying to them: "You women are doomed! You sew magic wristbands for everyone and make magic scarves for everyone to wear on their heads, so that they can have power over other people's lives. You want to possess the power of life and death over my people and to use it for your own benefit. 19 You dishonor me in front of my people in order to get a few handfuls of barley and a few pieces of bread. You kill people who don't deserve to die, and you keep people alive who don't deserve to live. So you tell lies to my people, and they believe you." 20 Now this is what the Sovereign Lord says: "I hate the wristbands that you use in your attempt to control life and death. I will rip them off your arms and set free the people that you were controlling. 21 I will rip off your scarves and let my people escape from your power once and for all. Then you will know that I am the Lord. 22 "By your lies you discourage good people, whom I do not wish to hurt. You prevent evil people from giving up evil and saving their lives. 23 So now your false visions and misleading predictions are over. I am rescuing my people from your power, so that you will know that I am the Lord."
1 Some of the leaders of the Israelites came to consult me about the Lord's will. 2 Then the Lord spoke to me. 3 "Mortal man," he said, "these men have given their hearts to idols and are letting idols lead them into sin. Do they think I will give them an answer? 4 "Now speak to them and tell them what I, the Sovereign Lord, am saying to them: Each of you Israelites who have given your heart to idols and let them lead you into sin and who then come to consult a prophet, will get an answer from me - the answer that your many idols deserve! 5 All those idols have turned the Israelites away from me, but by my answer I hope to win back their loyalty. 6 "Now then, tell the Israelites what I, the Sovereign Lord, am saying: Turn back and leave your disgusting idols. 7 "Whenever one of you Israelites or one of you foreigners who live in the Israelite community turn away from me and worship idols, and then go to consult a prophet, I, the Lord, will give you your answer! 8 I will oppose you. I will make an example of you. I will remove you from the community of my people, so that all of you will know that I am the Lord. 9 "If any prophets are deceived into giving a false answer, it is because I, the Lord, have deceived them. I will remove them from the people of Israel. 10 Both prophets and anyone who consults them will get the same punishment. 11 I will do this to keep the Israelites from deserting me and defiling themselves by their sins. They are to be my people, and I will be their God." The Sovereign Lord has spoken. 12 The Lord spoke to me. 13 "Mortal man," he said, "if a country sins and is unfaithful to me, I will reach out and destroy its supply of food. I will send a famine and kill people and animals alike. 14 Even if those three men, Noah, Danel, and Job, were living there, their goodness would save only their own lives." The Sovereign Lord has spoken. 15 "Or I might send wild animals to kill the people, making the land so dangerous that no one could travel through it, 16 and even if those three men lived there - as surely as I, the Sovereign Lord, am the living God - they would not be able to save even their own children. They would save only their own lives, and the land would become a wilderness. 17 "Or I might bring war on that country and send destructive weapons to wipe out people and animals alike, 18 and even if those three men lived there - as surely as I, the Sovereign Lord, am the living God - they would not be able to save even their children, but only their own lives. 19 "If I send an epidemic on that country and in my anger take many lives, killing people and animals, 20 even if Noah, Danel, and Job lived there - as surely as I, the Sovereign Lord, am the living God - they would not be able to save even their own children. Their goodness would save only their own lives." 21 This is what the Sovereign Lord is saying: "I will send my four worst punishments on Jerusalem - war, famine, wild animals, and disease - to destroy people and animals alike. 22 If some survive and save their children, look at them when they come to you. See how evil they are, and be convinced that the punishment I am bringing on Jerusalem is justified; 23 then you will know that there was good reason for everything I did." The Sovereign Lord has spoken.
1 The Lord spoke to me. 2 "Mortal man," he said, "how does a vine compare with a tree? What good is a branch of a grapevine compared with the trees of the forest? 3 Can you use it to make anything? Can you even make a peg out of it to hang things on? 4 It is only good for building a fire. And when the ends are burned up and the middle is charred, can you make anything out of it? 5 It was useless even before it was burned. Now that the fire has burned it and charred it, it is even more useless." 6 Now this is what the Sovereign Lord is saying: "Just as a vine is taken from the forest and burned, so I will take the people who live in Jerusalem 7 and will punish them. They have escaped one fire, but now fire will burn them up. When I punish them, you will know that I am the Lord. 8 They have been unfaithful to me, and so I will make the country a wilderness." The Sovereign Lord has spoken.