A Valley of Dried Bones; A Renewed Nation of Israel
1The hand of Yahweh was upon me, and he brought me by the Spirit of Yahweh, and he let me rest#Or “placed me”; literally “set me” in the midst of the valley, and it was full of bones. 2And he led me all around#Literally “all around, all around” over them, and look, very many on the surface of the valley, and look, very dry. 3And he said to me, “Son of man,#Or “mortal,” or “son of humankind” can these bones live?” And I said, “Lord Yahweh, you know.” 4And he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and you must say to them, to the dry bones, ‘Hear the word of Yahweh! 5Thus says the Lord Yahweh to these bones: “Look! I am bringing into you breath, and you will live! 6And I will lay on you sinews, and I will let flesh come upon you, and I will cover you over with skin, and I will put breath into you, and you will live, and you will know that I am Yahweh.” ’ ”
7And I prophesied just as#Literally “as that” I had been commanded, and there was a sound at my prophesying, and look! A rattling, and they came together—the bones! Bone to its bone! 8And I looked, and indeed, sinews were on them, and flesh went up,#Or “appeared” and skin covered over#Or “on” them upward,#Literally “from to above” but breath was not in them. 9And he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man,#Or “mortal,” or “son of humankind” and you must say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord Yahweh from the four winds,#Literally “from four winds” “Come, O spirit and breath, on these dead ones, so that they may live!” ’ ” 10And I prophesied as#Literally “like what” he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they became alive, and they stood on their feet, a very, very large group.
11And he said to me, “Son of man,#Or “mortal,” or “son of humankind” these bones are all of the house of Israel; look! they are saying, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is destroyed; we are cut off as far as we are concerned.’#Literally “we are cut in two for us” 12Therefore prophesy, and you must say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord Yahweh: “Look! I am opening your graves, and I will bring you up from your graves, my people, and I will bring you to the land of Israel! 13And you will know that I am Yahweh when I open your graves when I bring you up from your graves, my people! 14And I will put my breath into you so that you may live, and I will cause you to rest on your soil, and you will know that I, Yahweh, I have spoken, and I will act!” ’ declares#Literally “declaration of” Yahweh.”
15And the word of Yahweh came#Literally “was” to me, saying,#Literally “to say” 16“And you, son of man,#Or “mortal,” or “son of humankind” take for yourself a piece of wood,#Literally “a piece of wood one” and write on it, ‘For Judah and for the Israelites#Literally “sons/children of Israel” his associates,’ and take another piece of wood, and write on it, ‘For Joseph, the piece of wood of#Or “for” Ephraim and all of the house of Israel his associates.’ 17And join them one to the other with respect to you as one piece of wood, so that they may become one in your hand. 18When#Literally “as that” your people#Literally “the children of your people” say to you, saying,#Literally “to say” ‘Will you not inform us as to what these actions mean for you?’ 19Then speak to them, ‘Thus says the Lord Yahweh: “Look! I am taking the piece of wood for Joseph that is in the hand of Ephraim and the tribes of Israel its associates, and I will put them on it, the piece of wood of Judah, and I will make them into one piece of wood, so that they be one in my hand.’ ” 20And the pieces of wood on which you wrote will be in your hand before their eyes. 21And speak to them, ‘Thus says the Lord Yahweh: “Look! I am taking the Israelites#Literally “sons/children of Israel” from among the nations to which they went,#Literally “which they went there” and I will gather them from everywhere,#Literally “all around” and I will bring them to their own soil. 22And I will make them into one nation in the land on the mountains of Israel, and they will all have one king as their king,#Literally “and king one he will be for all of them to king” and they#According to the reading tradition (Qere) will not again be two nations and will not again divide into two kingdoms again. 23And they will not defile themselves again with their idols and with vile idols and with all of their transgressions, and I will save them from all of their apostasy by which they sinned,#Or “which they sinned by them” and I will cleanse them and they will be for me as a people and I, I will be for them as God.
24“ ‘ “And my servant David will be king over them, and one shepherd will be for all of them, and in my regulations they will go, and my statutes they will observe, and they will do them. 25And they will dwell on the land that I gave to my servant, to Jacob, in which your ancestors dwelled,#Literally “which they dwelt in it your fathers” and they will dwell on it, they and their children and the children of their children forever,#Literally “until eternity” or “until unlimited time” and my servant David will be a leader for them forever.#Literally “to eternity” or “to endless ages” 26And I will make with them a covenant of peace; an everlasting covenant#Literally “a covenant of eternity” it will be with them. And I will establish them, and I will cause them to increase, and I will put my sanctuary in the midst of them forever.#Literally “to eternity” or “to unlimited ages” 27And my tabernacle will be with them, and I will be for them as God, and they will be to me as a nation. 28And the nations will know that I, Yahweh, am consecrating Israel when my sanctuary is in the midst of them forever.” ’ ”#Literally “to eternity” or “to unlimited ages”