This city will not protect you the way a pot protects the meat in it. I will punish you wherever you may be in the land of Israel.
You will know that I am the Lord and that while you were keeping the laws of the neighboring nations, you were breaking [my ]laws and disobeying [my ]commands."
While I was prophesying, Pelatiah dropped dead. I threw myself face downward on the ground and shouted, "No, Sovereign Lord! Are you going to kill everyone left in Israel?"
The Lord spoke to me.
"Mortal man," he said, "the people who live in Jerusalem are talking about you and those of your nation who are in exile. They say, "The exiles are too far away to worship the Lord. He has given us possession of the land.'
"Now tell your fellow exiles what I am saying. I am the one who sent them to live in far-off nations and scattered them in other countries. Yet, for the time being I will be present with them in the lands where they have gone.
"So tell them what I, the Sovereign Lord, am saying. I will gather them out of the countries where I scattered them, and will give the land of Israel back to them.
When they return, they are to get rid of all the filthy, disgusting idols they find.
I will give them a new heart and a new mind. I will take away their stubborn heart of stone and will give them an obedient heart. 1
Then they will keep my laws and faithfully obey all my commands. They will be my people, and I will be their God.
But I will punish the people who love to worship filthy, disgusting idols. I will punish them for what they have done." The Sovereign Lord has spoken.