"Now, mortal man, tell the Israelites that when someone good sins, the good he has done will not save him. If an evil person stops doing evil, he won't be punished, and if a good man starts sinning, his life will not be spared.
I may promise life to someone good, but if he starts thinking that his past goodness is enough and begins to sin, I will not remember any of the good he did. He will die because of his sins.
I may warn someone evil that he is going to die, but if he stops sinning and does what is right and good -
for example, if he returns the security he took for a loan or gives back what he stole - if he stops sinning and follows the laws that give life, he will not die, but live.
I will forgive the sins he has committed, and he will live because he has done what is right and good.
"And your people say that what I do isn't right! No, it's their way that isn't right.
When someone righteous stops doing good and starts doing evil, he will die for it.
When someone evil quits sinning and does what is right and good, he has saved his life.
But Israel, you say that what I do isn't right. I am going to judge you by what you do."
On the fifth day of the tenth month of the twelfth year of our exile, someone who had escaped from Jerusalem came and told me that the city had fallen. 1
The evening before he came, I had felt the powerful presence of the Lord. When the man arrived the next morning, the Lord gave me back the power of speech.