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Ezekiel 20:45-49

Context
Prophecy Against the South

20:45 (21:1) 1  The word of the Lord came to me: 20:46 “Son of man, turn toward 2  the south, 3  and speak out against the south. 4  Prophesy against the open scrub 5  land of the Negev, 20:47 and say to the scrub land of the Negev, ‘Hear the word of the Lord: This is what the sovereign Lord says: Look here, 6  I am about to start a fire in you, 7  and it will devour every green tree and every dry tree in you. The flaming fire will not be extinguished, and the whole surface of the ground from the Negev to the north will be scorched by it. 20:48 And everyone 8  will see that I, the Lord, have burned it; it will not be extinguished.’”

20:49 Then I said, “O sovereign Lord! They are saying of me, ‘Does he not simply speak in eloquent figures of speech?’”

1 sn Beginning with 20:45, the verse numbers through 21:32 in the English Bible differ by five from the verse numbers in the Hebrew text (BHS), with 20:45 ET = 21:1 HT, 20:46 ET = 21:2 HT, 21:1 ET = 21:6 HT etc., through 21:32 ET = 21:37 HT. Beginning with 22:1 the verse numbers in the English Bible and the Hebrew Bible are again the same.

2 tn Heb “set your face toward.” This expression occurs as well in Ezek 6:2; 13:17.

3 tn Or “the way toward the south,” or “the way toward Teman.” Teman is in the south and may be a location or the direction.

4 tn Or “toward Darom.” Darom may mean the south or a region just north of southern city of Beer Sheba. See M. Greenberg, Ezekiel (AB), 2:417-18.

5 tn The Hebrew term can also mean “forest,” but a meaning of uncultivated wasteland fits the Negev region far better. See M. Greenberg, Ezekiel (AB), 2:418.

6 tn The word הִנֵּה (hinneh, traditionally “behold”) indicates becoming aware of something and has been translated here as a verb.

7 tn Fire also appears as a form of judgment in Ezek 15:4-7; 19:12, 14.

8 tn Heb “all flesh.”



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