1And the word of יהוה came to me, saying,
2“Son of man, speak to the children of your people, and you shall say to them, ‘When I bring the sword upon a land, and the people of the land shall take a man from their borders and shall make him their watchman,
3and he sees the sword coming upon the land, and shall blow the ram’s horn and shall warn the people,
4then whoever shall hear the sound of the ram’s horn and shall not take warning, if the sword comes and takes him away, his blood is on his own head.
5‘He heard the sound of the ram’s horn, but he did not take warning, his blood is on himself. But he who takes warning shall deliver his being.
6‘But if the watchman sees the sword coming and shall not blow the ram’s horn, and the people shall not be warned, and the sword comes and takes any being from among them, he is taken away in his crookedness, and his blood I require at the watchman’s hand.’
7“And you, son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Yisra’ĕl. And you shall hear a word from My mouth and you shall warn them for Me.
8“When I say to the wrong, ‘O wrong one, you shall certainly die!’ and you have not spoken to warn the wrong from his way, that wrong one shall die in his crookedness, and his blood I require at your hand.
9“But when you have warned#Similar messages in 3:18-21, 18:20-30.the wrong to turn from his way, and he has not turned from his way, he shall die in his crookedness, but you have delivered your being.
10“And you, O son of man, say to the house of Yisra’ĕl, ‘This is what you have said, “If our transgressions and our sins lie upon us, and we pine away in them, how then shall we live?” ’
11“Say to them, ‘As I live,’ declares the Master יהוה, ‘I have no pleasure in the death of the wrong, but that the wrong turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from your evil ways! For why should you die, O house of Yisra’ĕl?’
12“And you, O son of man, say to the children of your people, ‘The righteousness of the righteous man shall not deliver him in the day of his transgression. And as for the wrongness of the wrong, he shall not stumble because of it in the day that he turns from his wrong. And the righteous shall not be able to live because of his righteousness in the day that he sins.’
13“When I say to the righteous that he shall live, and he has trusted in his righteousness, and shall do unrighteousness, none of his righteousness shall be remembered, but because of his unrighteousness that he has done, he shall die.
14“Again, when I say to the wrong, ‘You shall certainly die,’ if he turns from his sin and does right and righteousness,
15if the wrong restores the pledge, gives back what he has stolen, and walks in the laws of life without doing crookedness, he shall certainly live; he shall not die.
16“None of his sins which he has committed shall be remembered against him – he has done right and righteousness; he shall certainly live.
17“And the children of your people have said, ‘The way of יהוה is not fair.’ But it is their way which is not fair!
18“When the righteous turns from his righteousness and does unrighteousness, he shall die because of it.
19“But when the wrong turns from his wrongness and does right and righteousness, he shall live because of it.
20“And you have said, ‘The way of יהוה is not fair.’ O house of Yisra’ĕl, I shall judge every one of you according to his own ways.”
21And it came to be in the twelfth year of our exile, in the tenth month, on the fifth of the month, that one who had escaped from Yerushalayim came to me and said, “The city has been smitten!”
22And the hand of יהוה came upon me the evening before the man came who had escaped. And He had opened my mouth, before he came to me in the morning. And my mouth was opened. And I was no longer silent.
23Then the word of יהוה came to me, saying,
24“Son of man, they who inhabit those ruins in the land of Yisra’ĕl are saying, ‘Aḇraham was only one, and he inherited the land. But we are many, let the land be given to us as a possession.’
25“Therefore say to them, ‘Thus said the Master יהוה, “You eat meat with blood, and you lift up your eyes toward your idols, and shed blood. Should you then possess the land?
26“You depend on your sword, and you commit abominations, and each of you defiles his neighbour’s wife. Should you then possess the land?” ’
27“Say this to them, ‘Thus said the Master יהוה, “As I live, those who are in the ruins shall fall by the sword, and the one who is in the open field I shall give to the beasts to be devoured, and those who are in the strongholds and caves shall die of the pestilence.
28“And I shall make the land a desert and a waste, the arrogance of her strength shall cease, and the mountains of Yisra’ĕl shall be a waste, with none passing through.
29“And they shall know that I am יהוה, when I have made the land a desert and a waste, because of all their abominations which they have done.” ’
30“As for you, son of man, the children of your people are talking about you beside the walls and in the doors of the houses. And they speak to each other, each saying to his brother, ‘Please come and hear what the word is that comes from יהוה.’
31“And they come to you as people do, and they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words, but they do not do them. For with their mouth they show much love – their hearts pursue their greedy gain.
32“And see, you are to them as a very lovely song of one who has a pleasant voice and playing well on an instrument. And they hear your words, but they do not do them.
33“And when it comes – see, it shall come – then they shall know that a prophet has been in their midst.”