Ezekiel 24; Ezekiel 25; Ezekiel 26; 1 Peter 2

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Ezekiel 24

1 On the tenth day of the tenth month in the ninth year, the LORD spoke his word to me. He said,
2 "Son of man, write down today's date. The king of Babylon has surrounded Jerusalem this very day.
3 Tell these rebellious people a story. Tell them, 'This is what the Almighty LORD says: Put the pot on the fire; put it on. Pour water in it.
4 Cut the meat into pieces, all the best pieces, the thigh and shoulder. Fill the pot with the meatiest bones
5 selected from the best sheep. Pile wood under the pot. Bring the mixture in the pot to a boil. Cook the bones that are in it well.
6 "'This is what the Almighty LORD says: How horrible it will be for that city of murderers, for that tarnished pot. Its tarnish will not come off. Empty the meat out of it piece by piece without choosing any particular piece.
7 Blood is still in that city. The blood was poured on a bare rock. It wasn't poured on the ground where dust would cover it.
8 In order to stir up my fury so that I would pay that city back, I put the blood of its victims on a bare rock. Now that blood can't be covered.
9 "'This is what the Almighty LORD says: How horrible it will be for that city of murderers. I, too, will pile the wood high.
10 Pile it high, and light the fire. Cook the meat thoroughly, stir the mixture, and let the bones burn.
11 Then set the empty pot on the coals so that it gets hot and its copper glows. Its impurities will melt away, and its tarnish will burn off.
12 "'I have worn myself out trying to clean this pot. Even the fire can't take away its thick tarnish.
13 I tried to clean you of your filthy lust, but you wouldn't clean yourself from your filth. You will never be clean until I unleash my fury on you.
14 I, the LORD, have spoken. It will happen, and I will do it. I will not ignore you, pity you, or change my plans. I will punish you because of the way you lived and because of everything you have done,'" declares the Almighty LORD.
15 Then the LORD spoke his word to me. He said,
16 "Son of man, with one blow I'm going to take away from you the person you love the most. But you must not mourn, cry, or let tears run down your face.
17 Groan silently. Don't grieve for the person who dies. Tie on your turban, and put on your sandals. Don't cover your face or eat the food that mourners eat."
18 So I spoke to the people in the morning, and in the evening my wife died. The next morning I did as I was ordered.
19 The people asked me, "Tell us, what do these things that you are doing mean to us?"
20 I told them, "The LORD spoke his word to me. He said,
21 'Tell the nation of Israel, "This is what the Almighty LORD says: I'm going to dishonor my holy place. You brag that my holy place gives you strength. It's the thing you love the most. It's your hearts' desire. So the sons and daughters that you left behind will die in battle.
22 Then you must do as I did. Don't cover your faces or eat the food that mourners eat.
23 Leave your turbans on your heads and your sandals on your feet. Don't grieve or cry! You will waste away because of your guilt and groan to one another.
24 Ezekiel is a sign to you. You will do everything he has done. Then you will know that I am the Almighty LORD."'
25 "Son of man, on that day I will take their stronghold away from them. It makes them happy and proud. It is their hearts' desire and the thing they love the most. I will also take away their sons and daughters.
26 On that day a refugee will come to you to tell you the news.
27 On that very day your mouth will be opened, and you will talk to the refugee. You will speak and not be silent anymore. You will be a sign to them. Then they will know that I am the LORD."

Ezekiel 25

1 The LORD spoke his word to me. He said,
2 "Son of man, turn to the Ammonites and prophesy against them.
3 Tell the Ammonites, 'Listen to the word of the Almighty LORD. This is what the Almighty LORD says: You were glad when my holy place was dishonored, when the land of Israel was ruined, and when the nation of Judah went into exile.
4 That is why I'm going to hand you over to the people in the east. They will possess your land. They will set up their camps and pitch their tents among you. They will eat your crops and drink your milk.
5 I will turn Rabbah into a pasture for camels, and I will turn Ammon into a resting place for sheep. Then you will know that I am the LORD.
6 "'This is what the Almighty LORD says: You clapped your hands and stomped your feet. You rejoiced and felt contempt for the land of Israel.
7 That is why I will use my power against you and hand you over to the nations as loot. I will wipe you out from among the nations, make you disappear, and destroy you. Then you will know that I am the LORD.
8 "'This is what the Almighty LORD says: Moab and Seir said, "The nation of Judah is like all the other nations."
9 That is why I'm going to open up the cities that protect Moab's borders. They are the beautiful cities of Beth Jeshimoth, Baal Meon, and Kiriathaim.
10 I will hand the Moabites and the Ammonites over to the people in the east. So the Ammonites will no longer be remembered among the nations.
11 I will punish Moab. Then they will know that I am the LORD.
12 "'This is what the Almighty LORD says: Edom took revenge on the nation of Judah and became guilty because of it.
13 So this is what the Almighty LORD says: I will use my power against Edom. I will wipe out people and animals. I will turn the land into ruins from Teman to Dedan. People will die in battle.
14 I will use my people Israel to take revenge on Edom. My people will deal with Edom based on my anger and my fury. Then the Edomites will know my revenge, declares the Almighty LORD.
15 "'This is what the Almighty LORD says: The Philistines have taken revenge with spiteful hearts. They have tried to destroy their long-time enemies.
16 So this is what the Almighty LORD says: I'm going to use my power against the Philistines, cut off the Cherethites, and destroy the people that are left on the coast.
17 I will take fierce revenge on them and punish them with fury. I will take revenge on them. Then they will know that I am the LORD.'"

Ezekiel 26

1 On the first day of the month in the eleventh year, the LORD spoke his word to me. He said,
2 "Son of man, Tyre said this about Jerusalem: 'The city that was the gateway for the nations is destroyed, and its doors are swung open to me. I'll get rich now that it's ruined.'
3 So this is what the Almighty LORD says: I am against you, Tyre. I will bring many nations against you as the waves on the sea rise.
4 They will destroy the walls of Tyre and tear down its towers. Then I will sweep up the dust and turn Tyre into a bare rock.
5 It will become a place by the sea where people spread their fishing nets. I have spoken, declares the Almighty LORD. It will become a prize for the nations.
6 The people in the villages and on the mainland will die in battle. Then they will know that I am the LORD.
7 "This is what the Almighty LORD says: From the north I'm going to bring King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon against you, Tyre. He is the greatest king. He will bring horses, chariots, war horses, many people, and many troops.
8 He will destroy the villages on your mainland. He will set up blockades, put up dirt ramps, and raise his shields against you.
9 He will direct his battering rams against your walls, and he will cut down your towers with his axes.
10 He will have so many horses that their dust will cover you. The noise from the war horses, wagon wheels, and chariots will shake your walls when he enters your gates. He will enter as people enter a conquered city.
11 With his horses' hoofs he will trample all your streets. He will kill your people in battle, and your strong pillars will fall to the ground.
12 His troops will loot your riches and take your goods as prizes. They will destroy your walls and tear down your delightful homes. They will throw your stones, wood, and soil into the water.
13 "I will put a stop to your noisy songs, and the music from your harps will no longer be heard.
14 I will turn you into bare rock. You will become a place to spread fishing nets. You will never be rebuilt. I, the LORD, have spoken, declares the Almighty LORD.
15 "This is what the Almighty LORD says to Tyre: The people who live on the coast will shake with fear when they hear about your defeat. They will groan when your people are wounded and slaughtered.
16 Then the princes from the coast will come down from their thrones. They will remove their robes and take off their embroidered clothes. Dressed in terror, they will sit on the ground. They will tremble constantly and be shocked at you.
17 Then they will sing this funeral song for you: Tyre, you famous city, you have been destroyed. You have been shattered by the sea. You and your people ruled the sea. All your people terrified those who lived by the coast.
18 Your defeat will make the people who live by the coast tremble. Your end will terrify the islands in the sea.
19 "This is what the Almighty LORD says: I will turn your city into ruins like cities that have no one living in them. I will bring the deep ocean over you, and the Mediterranean Sea will cover you.
20 I will bring you down with those who descend to the grave to join the people of long ago. I will make you live below the earth among the ancient ruins with those who go down to the grave. You will never return or take your place in the land of the living.
21 I will turn you into a terror, and you will no longer exist. People will look for you, but they will never see you again," declares the Almighty LORD.

1 Peter 2

1 So get rid of every kind of evil, every kind of deception, hypocrisy, jealousy, and every kind of slander.
2 Desire God's pure word as newborn babies desire milk. Then you will grow in your salvation.
3 Certainly you have tasted that the Lord is good!
4 You are coming to Christ, the living stone who was rejected by humans but was chosen as precious by God.
5 You come to him as living stones, a spiritual house that is being built into a holy priesthood. So offer spiritual sacrifices that God accepts through Jesus Christ.
6 That is why Scripture says, "I am laying a chosen and precious cornerstone in Zion, and the person who believes in him will never be ashamed."
7 This honor belongs to those who believe. But to those who don't believe: "The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone,
8 a stone that people trip over, a large rock that people find offensive." The people tripped over the word because they refused to believe it. Therefore, this is how they ended up.
9 However, you are chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, people who belong to God. You were chosen to tell about the excellent qualities of God, who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
10 Once you were not God's people, but now you are. Once you were not shown mercy, but now you have been shown mercy.
11 Dear friends, since you are foreigners and temporary residents [in the world], I'm encouraging you to keep away from the desires of your corrupt nature. These desires constantly attack you.
12 Live decent lives among unbelievers. Then, although they ridicule you as if you were doing wrong while they are watching you do good things, they will praise God on the day he comes to help you.
13 Place yourselves under the authority of human governments to please the Lord. Obey the emperor. He holds the highest position of authority.
14 Also obey governors. They are people the emperor has sent to punish those who do wrong and to praise those who do right.
15 God wants you to silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing what is right.
16 Live as free people, but don't hide behind your freedom when you do evil. Instead, use your freedom to serve God.
17 Honor everyone. Love your brothers and sisters in the faith. Fear God. Honor the emperor.
18 Slaves, place yourselves under the authority of your owners and show them complete respect. Obey not only those owners who are good and kind, but also those who are unfair.
19 God is pleased if a person is aware of him while enduring the pains of unjust suffering.
20 What credit do you deserve if you endure a beating for doing something wrong? But if you endure suffering for doing something good, God is pleased with you.
21 God called you to endure suffering because Christ suffered for you. He left you an example so that you could follow in his footsteps.
22 Christ never committed any sin. He never spoke deceitfully.
23 Christ never verbally abused those who verbally abused him. When he suffered, he didn't make any threats but left everything to the one who judges fairly.
24 Christ carried our sins in his body on the cross so that freed from our sins, we could live a life that has God's approval. His wounds have healed you.
25 You were like lost sheep. Now you have come back to the shepherd and bishop of your lives.