1This is the word of the Lord: Where is the statement which I gave your mother when I put her away? or to which of my creditors have I given you for money? It was for your sins that you were given into the hands of others, and for your evil-doing was your mother put away.
2Why, then, when I came, was there no man? and no one to give answer to my voice? has my hand become feeble, so that it is unable to take up your cause? or have I no power to make you free? See, at my word the sea becomes dry, I make the rivers a waste land: their fish are dead for need of water, and make an evil smell.
3By me the heavens are clothed with black, and I make haircloth their robe.
4The Lord God has given me the tongue of those who are experienced, so that I may be able to give the word a special sense for the feeble: every morning my ear is open to his teaching, like those who are experienced:
5And I have not put myself against him, or let my heart be turned back from him.
6I was offering my back to those who gave me blows, and my face to those who were pulling out my hair: I did not keep my face covered from marks of shame.
7For the Lord God is my helper; I will not be put to shame: so I have made my face like a rock, and I am certain that he will give me my right.
8He who takes up my cause is near; who will go to law with me? let us come together before the judge: who is against me? let him come near to me.
9See, the Lord God is my helper; who will give a decision against me? truly, all of them will become old like a robe; they will be food for the worm.
10Who among you has the fear of the Lord, giving ear to the voice of his servant who has been walking in the dark and has no light? Let him put his faith in the name of the Lord, looking to his God for support.
11See, all you who make a fire, arming yourselves with burning branches: go in the flame of your fire, and among the branches you have put a light to. This will you have from my hand, you will make your bed in sorrow.
1And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,
2Son of man, let your face be turned to Jerusalem, let your words be dropped in the direction of her holy place, and be a prophet against the land of Israel;
3And say to the land of Israel, These are the words of the Lord: See, I am against you, and I will take my sword out of its cover, cutting off from you the upright and the evil.
4Because I am going to have the upright and the evil cut off from you, for this cause my sword will go out from its cover against all flesh from the south to the north:
5And all flesh will see that I the Lord have taken my sword out of its cover: and it will never go back.
6Make sounds of grief, son of man; with body bent and a bitter heart make sounds of grief before their eyes.
7And when they say to you, Why are you making sounds of grief? then say, Because of the news, for it is coming: and every heart will become soft, and all hands will be feeble, and every spirit will be burning low, and all knees will be turned to water: see, it is coming and it will be done, says the Lord.
8And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,
9Son of man, say as a prophet, These are the words of the Lord: Say, A sword, a sword which has been made sharp and polished:
10It has been made sharp to give death; it is polished so that it may be like a thunder-flame: …
11And I have given it to the polisher so that it may be taken in the hand: he has made the sword sharp, he has had it polished, to put it into the hand of him who gives death.
12Give loud cries and make sounds of grief, O son of man: for it has come on my people, it has come on all the rulers of Israel: fear of the sword has come on my people: for this cause give signs of grief.
14So then, son of man, be a prophet, and put your hands together with a loud sound, and give two blows with the sword, and even three; it is the sword of those who are wounded, even the sword of the wounded; the great sword which goes round about them.
15In order that hearts may become soft, and the number of those who are falling may be increased, I have sent death by the sword against all their doors: you are made like a flame, you are polished for death.
16Be pointed to the right, to the left, wherever your edge is ordered.
17And I will put my hands together with a loud sound, and I will let my wrath have rest: I the Lord have said it.
18And the word of the Lord came to me again, saying,
19And you, son of man, have two ways marked out, so that the sword of the king of Babylon may come; let the two of them come out of one land: and let there be a pillar at the top of the road:
20Put a pillar at the top of the road for the sword to come to Rabbah in the land of the children of Ammon, and to Judah and to Jerusalem in the middle of her.
21For the king of Babylon took his place at the parting of the ways, at the top of the two roads, to make use of secret arts: shaking the arrows this way and that, he put questions to the images of his gods, he took note of the inner parts of dead beasts.
22At his right hand was the fate of Jerusalem, to give orders for destruction, to send up the war-cry, to put engines of war against the doors, lifting up earthworks, building walls.
23And this answer given by secret arts will seem false to those who have given their oaths and have let them be broken: but he will keep the memory of evil-doing so that they may be taken.
24For this cause the Lord has said: Because you have made your evil-doing come to mind by the uncovering of your wrongdoing, causing your sins to be seen in all your evil-doings; because you have come to mind, you will be taken in them.
25And you, O evil one, wounded to death, O ruler of Israel, whose day has come in the time of the last punishment;
26This is what the Lord has said: Take away the holy head-dress, take off the crown: this will not be again: let that which is low be lifted up, and that which is high be made low.
27I will let it be overturned, overturned, overturned: this will not be again till he comes whose right it is; and I will give it to him.
28And you, son of man, say as a prophet, This is what the Lord has said about the children of Ammon and about their shame: Say, A sword, even a sword let loose, polished for death, to make it shining so that it may be like a flame:
29Your vision is to no purpose, your use of secret arts gives a false answer, to put it on the necks of evil-doers who are wounded to death, whose day has come, in the time of the last punishment.
30Go back into your cover. In the place where you were made, in the land from which you were taken, I will be your judge.
31And I will let loose my burning passion on you, breathing out on you the fire of my wrath: and I will give you up into the hands of men like beasts, trained to destruction.
32You will be food for the fire; your blood will be drained out in the land; there will be no more memory of you: for I the Lord have said it.
1And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,
2And you, son of man, will you be a judge, will you be a judge of the town of blood? then make clear to her all her disgusting ways.
3And you are to say, This is what the Lord has said: A town causing blood to be drained out in her streets so that her time may come, and making images in her to make her unclean!
4You are responsible for the blood drained out by you, and you are unclean through the images which you have made; and you have made your day come near, and the time of your judging has come; for this cause I have made you a name of shame to the nations and a cause of laughing to all countries.
5Those who are near and those who are far from you will make sport of you; your name is unclean, you are full of sounds of fear.
6See, the rulers of Israel, every one in his family, have been causing death in you.
7In you they have had no respect for father and mother; in you they have been cruel to the man from a strange land; in you they have done wrong to the child without a father and to the widow.
8You have made little of my holy things, and have made my Sabbaths unclean.
9In you there are men who say evil of others, causing death; in you they have taken the flesh with the blood for food; in your streets they have put evil designs into effect.
10In you they have let the shame of their fathers be seen; in you they have done wrong to a woman at the time when she was unclean.
11And in you one man has done what was disgusting with his neighbour’s wife; and another has made his daughter-in-law unclean; and another has done wrong to his sister, his father’s daughter.
12In you they have taken rewards as the price of blood; you have taken interest and great profits, and you have taken away your neighbours’ goods by force, and have not kept me in mind, says the Lord.
13See, then, I have made my hands come together in wrath against your taking of goods by force and against the blood which has been flowing in you.
14Will your heart be high or your hands strong in the days when I take you in hand? I the Lord have said it and will do it.
15And I will send you in flight among the nations and wandering among the countries; and I will completely take away out of you everything which is unclean.
16And you will be made low before the eyes of the nations; and it will be clear to you that I am the Lord.
17And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,
18Son of man, the children of Israel have become like the poorest sort of waste metal to me: they are all silver and brass and tin and iron and lead mixed with waste.
19For this cause the Lord has said: Because you have all become waste metal, see, I will get you together inside Jerusalem.
20As they put silver and brass and iron and lead and tin together inside the oven, heating up the fire on it to make it soft; so will I get you together in my wrath and in my passion, and, heating the fire with my breath, will make you soft.
21Yes, I will take you, breathing on you the fire of my wrath, and you will become soft in it.
22As silver becomes soft in the oven, so you will become soft in it; and you will be certain that I the Lord have let loose my passion on you.
23And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,
24Son of man, say to her, You are a land on which no rain or thunderstorm has come in the day of wrath.
25Her rulers in her are like a loud-voiced lion violently taking his food; they have made a meal of souls; they have taken wealth and valued property; they have made great the number of widows in her.
26Her priests have been acting violently against my law; they have made my holy things unclean: they have made no division between what is holy and what is common, and they have not made it clear that the unclean is different from the clean, and their eyes have been shut to my Sabbaths, and I am not honoured among them.
27Her rulers in her are like wolves violently taking their food; putting men to death and causing the destruction of souls, so that they may get their profit.
28And her prophets have been using whitewash, seeing foolish visions and making false use of secret arts, saying, This is what the Lord has said, when the Lord has said nothing.
29The people of the land have been acting cruelly, taking men’s goods by force; they have been hard on the poor and those in need, and have done wrong to the man from a strange land.
30And I was looking for a man among them who would make up the wall and take his station in the broken place before me for the land, so that I might not send destruction on it: but there was no one.
31And I let loose my passion on them, and have put an end to them in the fire of my wrath: I have made the punishment of their ways come on their heads, says the Lord.
12So then, my loved ones, as you have at all times done what I say, not only when I am present, but now much more when I am not with you, give yourselves to working out your salvation with fear in your hearts;
13For it is God who is the cause of your desires and of your acts, for his good pleasure.
14Do all things without protests and arguments;
15So that you may be holy and gentle, children of God without sin in a twisted and foolish generation, among whom you are seen as lights in the world,
16Offering the word of life; so that I may have glory in you in the day of Christ, because my running was not for nothing and my work was not without effect.
17And even if I am offered like a drink offering, giving myself for the cause and work of your faith, I am glad and have joy with you all:
18And in the same way do you be glad and have a part in my joy.
19But I am hoping in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you before long, so that I may be comforted when I have news of you.
20For I have no man of like mind who will truly have care for you.
21For they all go after what is theirs, not after the things of Christ.
22But his quality is clear to you; how, as a child is to its father, so he was a help to me in the work of the good news.
23Him then I am hoping to send as quickly as possible, when I am able to see how things will go for me:
24But I have faith in the Lord that I myself will come before long.
25But it seemed to me necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, who has taken part with me in the work and in the fight, and your servant, sent by you for help in my need;
26Because his heart was with you all, and he was greatly troubled because you had news that he was ill:
27For in fact he was ill almost to death: but God had mercy on him; and not only on him but on me, so that I might not have grief on grief.
28I have sent him, then, the more gladly, so that when you see him again, you may be happy and I may have the less sorrow.
29So take him to your hearts in the Lord with all joy, and give honour to such as he is:
30Because for the work of Christ he was near to death, putting his life in danger to make your care for me complete.