The Rebellions of Israel
1It came to pass in the seventh year, in the fifth month, on the tenth day of the month, that #Ezek. 8:1, 11, 12; 14:1certain of the elders of Israel came to inquire of the Lord, and sat before me. 2Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 3“Son of man, speak to the elders of Israel, and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Have you come to inquire of Me? As I live,” says the Lord God, #Ezek. 7:26; 14:3“I will not be inquired of by you.” ’ 4Will you judge them, son of man, will you judge them? Then #Ezek. 16:2; 22:2; Matt. 23:32make known to them the abominations of their fathers.
5“Say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “On the day when #Ex. 6:6–8; Deut. 7:6I chose Israel and raised My hand in an oath to the descendants of the house of Jacob, and made Myself #Ex. 3:8; 4:31; Deut. 4:34known to them in the land of Egypt, I raised My hand in an oath to them, saying, #Ex. 20:2‘I am the Lord your God.’ 6On that day I raised My hand in an oath to them, #Ex. 3:8, 17; Deut. 8:7–9; Jer. 32:22to bring them out of the land of Egypt into a land that I had searched out for them, #Ex. 3:8‘flowing with milk and honey,’ #Ex. 3:8, 17; 13:5; 33:3; Ps. 48:2; Jer. 11:5; 32:22; Ezek. 20:15; Dan. 8:9; Zech. 7:14the glory of all lands. 7Then I said to them, ‘Each of you, #Ezek. 18:31throw away #2 Chr. 15:8the abominations which are before his eyes, and do not defile yourselves with #Lev. 18:3; Deut. 29:16; Josh. 24:14the idols of Egypt. I am the Lord your God.’ 8But they rebelled against Me and would not obey Me. They did not all cast away the abominations which were before their eyes, nor did they forsake the idols of Egypt. Then I said, ‘I will #Ezek. 7:8pour out My fury on them and fulfill My anger against them in the midst of the land of Egypt.’ 9#Num. 14:13But I acted for My name’s sake, that it should not be profaned before the Gentiles among whom they were, in whose sight I had made Myself #Josh. 2:10; 9:9, 10known to them, to bring them out of the land of Egypt.
10“Therefore I #Ex. 13:18made them go out of the land of Egypt and brought them into the wilderness. 11#Deut. 4:8; Neh. 9:13; Ps. 147:19And I gave them My statutes and showed them My judgments, #Lev. 18:5; Ezek. 20:13; Rom. 10:5; (Gal. 3:12)‘which, if a man does, he shall live by them.’ 12Moreover I also gave them My #Ex. 20:8; Deut. 5:12; Neh. 9:14Sabbaths, to be a sign between them and Me, that they might know that I am the Lord who sanctifies them. 13Yet the house of Israel #Num. 14:22; Ps. 78:40; Ezek. 20:8rebelled against Me in the wilderness; they did not walk in My statutes; they #Prov. 1:25despised My judgments, #Lev. 18:5‘which, if a man does, he shall live by them’; and they greatly #Ex. 16:27defiled My Sabbaths. Then I said I would pour out My fury on them in the #Num. 14:29; Ps. 106:23wilderness, to consume them. 14#Ezek. 20:9, 20But I acted for My name’s sake, that it should not be profaned before the Gentiles, in whose sight I had brought them out. 15So #Num. 14:28; Ps. 95:11; 106:26I also raised My hand in an oath to them in the wilderness, that I would not bring them into the land which I had given them, #Ex. 3:8‘flowing with milk and honey,’ #Ezek. 20:6the glory of all lands, 16#Ezek. 20:13, 24because they despised My judgments and did not walk in My statutes, but profaned My Sabbaths; for #Num. 15:39; Ps. 78:37; Amos 5:25; Acts 7:42their heart went after their idols. 17#(Ps. 78:38)Nevertheless My eye spared them from destruction. I did not make an end of them in the wilderness.
18“But I said to their children in the wilderness, ‘Do not walk in the statutes of your fathers, nor observe their judgments, nor defile yourselves with their idols. 19I am the Lord your God: #Deut. 5:32Walk in My statutes, keep My judgments, and do them; 20#Is. 58:13, 14; Jer. 17:22hallow My Sabbaths, and they will be a sign between Me and you, that you may know that I am the Lord your God.’
21“Notwithstanding, #Num. 25:1; Deut. 9:23the children rebelled against Me; they did not walk in My statutes, and were not careful to observe My judgments, #Lev. 18:5‘which, if a man does, he shall live by them’; but they profaned My Sabbaths. Then I said I would pour out My fury on them and fulfill My anger against them in the wilderness. 22Nevertheless I withdrew My hand and acted for My name’s sake, that it should not be profaned in the sight of the Gentiles, in whose sight I had brought them out. 23Also I raised My hand in an oath to those in the wilderness, that #Lev. 26:33; Deut. 28:64; Ps. 106:27; Jer. 15:4I would scatter them among the Gentiles and disperse them throughout the countries, 24#Ezek. 20:13, 16because they had not executed My judgments, but had despised My statutes, profaned My Sabbaths, and #Ezek. 6:9their eyes were fixed on their fathers’ idols.
25“Therefore #Ps. 81:12; Rom. 1:24; 2 Thess. 2:11I also gave them up to statutes that were not good, and judgments by which they could not live; 26and I pronounced them unclean because of their ritual gifts, in that they caused all their firstborn to pass #2 Kin. 17:17; 2 Chr. 28:3; Jer. 32:35; Ezek. 16:20through the fire, that I might make them desolate and that they #Ezek. 6:7; 20:12, 20might know that I am the Lord.” ’
27“Therefore, son of man, speak to the house of Israel, and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “In this too your fathers have #Num. 15:30; Is. 65:7; Rom. 2:24blasphemed Me, by being unfaithful to Me. 28When I brought them into the land concerning which I had raised My hand in an oath to give them, and #1 Kin. 14:23; Ps. 78:58; Is. 57:5–7; Jer. 3:6; Ezek. 6:13they saw all the high hills and all the thick trees, there they offered their sacrifices and provoked Me with their offerings. There they also sent up their #Ezek. 16:19sweet aroma and poured out their drink offerings. 29Then I said to them, ‘What is this high place to which you go?’ So its name is called Bamah to this day.” ’ 30Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Are you defiling yourselves in the manner of your #Judg. 2:19fathers, and committing harlotry according to their #Jer. 7:26; 16:12abominations? 31For when you offer #Ps. 106:37–39; Jer. 7:31; Ezek. 16:20; 20:26your gifts and make your sons pass through the fire, you defile yourselves with all your idols, even to this day. So shall I be inquired of by you, O house of Israel? As I live,” says the Lord God, “I will #Ezek. 20:3not be inquired of by you. 32#Ezek. 11:5What you have in your mind shall never be, when you say, ‘We will be like the Gentiles, like the families in other countries, serving wood and stone.’
God Will Restore Israel
33“As I live,” says the Lord God, “surely with a mighty hand, #Jer. 21:5with an outstretched arm, and with fury poured out, I will rule over you. 34I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you are scattered, with a mighty hand, with an outstretched arm, and with fury poured out. 35And I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there #Jer. 2:9, 35; Ezek. 17:20I will plead My case with you face to face. 36#Num. 14:21–23, 28Just as I pleaded My case with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so I will plead My case with you,” says the Lord God.
37“I will make you #Lev. 27:32; Jer. 33:13pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the #Ps. 89:30–34; Ezek. 16:60, 62covenant; 38#Ezek. 34:17; Amos 9:9, 10; Zech. 13:8, 9; (Mal. 3:3; 4:1–3; Matt. 25:32)I will purge the rebels from among you, and those who transgress against Me; I will bring them out of the country where they dwell, but #Jer. 44:14they shall not enter the land of Israel. Then you will know that I am the Lord.
39“As for you, O house of Israel,” thus says the Lord God: #Judg. 10:14; Ps. 81:12; Amos 4:4“Go, serve every one of you his idols—and hereafter—if you will not obey Me; #Is. 1:13–15; Ezek. 23:38but profane My holy name no more with your gifts and your idols. 40For #Is. 2:2, 3; Ezek. 17:23; Mic. 4:1on My holy mountain, on the mountain height of Israel,” says the Lord God, “there #Ezek. 37:22all the house of Israel, all of them in the land, shall serve Me; there #Is. 56:7; 60:7; Ezek. 43:27; Zech. 8:20–22; Mal. 3:4; (Rom. 12:1)I will accept them, and there I will require your offerings and the firstfruits of your sacrifices, together with all your holy things. 41I will accept you as a #Eph. 5:2; Phil. 4:18sweet aroma when I bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered; and I will be hallowed in you before the Gentiles. 42#Ezek. 36:23; 38:23Then you shall know that I am the Lord, #Ezek. 11:17; 34:13; 36:24when I bring you into the land of Israel, into the country for which I raised My hand in an oath to give to your fathers. 43And #Ezek. 16:61there you shall remember your ways and all your doings with which you were defiled; and #Lev. 26:39; Ezek. 6:9; Hos. 5:15you shall loathe yourselves in your own sight because of all the evils that you have committed. 44#Ezek. 24:24Then you shall know that I am the Lord, when I have dealt with you #Ezek. 36:22for My name’s sake, not according to your wicked ways nor according to your corrupt doings, O house of Israel,” says the Lord God.’ ”
Fire in the Forest
45Furthermore the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 46#Ezek. 21:2; Amos 7:16“Son of man, set your face toward the south; preach against the south and prophesy against the forest land, the South, 47and say to the forest of the South, ‘Hear the word of the Lord! Thus says the Lord God: “Behold, #Is. 9:18, 19; Jer. 21:14I will kindle a fire in you, and it shall devour #Luke 23:31every green tree and every dry tree in you; the blazing flame shall not be quenched, and all faces #Ezek. 21:4from the south to the north shall be scorched by it. 48All flesh shall see that I, the Lord, have kindled it; it shall not be quenched.” ’ ”
49Then I said, “Ah, Lord God! They say of me, ‘Does he not speak #Ezek. 12:9; 17:2; Matt. 13:13; John 16:25parables?’ ”