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New American Bible

2002 11 11
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Chapter 5


As for you, son of man, take a sharp sword and use it like a barber's razor, passing it over your head and beard. Then take a set of scales and divide the hair you have cut.


1 Burn a third in the fire, within the city, when the days of your siege are completed; place another third around the city and strike it with the sword; the final third strew in the wind, and pursue it with the sword.


(But of the last take a small number and tie them in the hem of your garment.


Then take some of these and throw them in the midst of the fire and burn them.) Say to the whole house of Israel:


Thus says the Lord GOD: This is Jerusalem! In the midst of the nations I placed her, surrounded by foreign countries.


But she rebelled against my ordinances more wickedly than the nations, and against my statutes more than the foreign countries surrounding her; she has spurned my ordinances and has not lived by my statutes.


Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Because you have been more rebellious than the nations surrounding you, not living by my statutes nor fulfilling my ordinances, but acting according to the ordinances of the surrounding nations;


2 therefore thus says the Lord GOD: See, I am coming at you! I will inflict punishments in your midst while the nations look on.


Because of all your abominations I will do with you what I have never done before, the like of which I will never do again.


3 This means that fathers within you shall eat sons, and sons shall eat fathers. I will inflict punishments upon you and scatter all that remain of your people in every direction.


Therefore, as I live, says the Lord GOD, because you have defiled my sanctuary with all your detestable abominations, I swear to cut you down. I will not look upon you with pity nor have mercy.


A third of your people shall die of pestilence and perish of hunger within you; another third shall fall by the sword all around you; and a third I will scatter in every direction, and I will pursue them with the sword.


When I loose against you the cruel, destructive arrows of hunger, I will break your staff of bread;


I will send famine against you, and wild beasts that shall rob you of your children. Pestilence and bloodshed shall stalk through you, and I will bring the sword upon you. I, the LORD, have spoken!


Thus shall my anger spend itself, and I will wreak my fury upon them till I am appeased; they shall know that I, the LORD, have spoken in my jealousy when I spend my fury upon them.


I will make you a waste and a reproach among the nations that surround you, which every passer-by may see.


When I execute judgment upon you in anger and fury and with furious chastisements, you shall be a reproach and an object of scorn, a terrible warning to the nations that surround you. I, the LORD, have spoken!



1 [2] The city: the one drawn on the tablet.

2 [8] I am coming at you: an expression borrowed from the language of warfare in which enemies attacked one another with the sword. You in Ezekiel 5:8-17 is Jerusalem.

3 [10] Fathers . . . shall eat sons, and sons . . . fathers: see note on Lam 2:20.

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