23:5 “Oholah engaged in prostitution while she was mine. 1 She lusted after her lovers, the Assyrians 2 – warriors 3 23:6 clothed in blue, governors and officials, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding on horses. 23:7 She bestowed her sexual favors on them; all of them were the choicest young men of Assyria. She defiled herself with all whom she desired 4 – with all their idols. 23:8 She did not abandon the prostitution she had practiced in Egypt; for in her youth men had sex with her, fondled her virgin breasts, and ravished her. 5 23:9 Therefore I handed her over to her lovers, the Assyrians 6 for whom she lusted. 23:10 They exposed her nakedness, seized her sons and daughters, and killed her with the sword. She became notorious 7 among women, and they executed judgments against her.
23:11 “Her sister Oholibah watched this, 8 but she became more corrupt in her lust than her sister had been, and her acts of prostitution were more numerous than those of her sister. 23:12 She lusted after the Assyrians – governors and officials, warriors in full armor, horsemen riding on horses, all of them desirable young men. 23:13 I saw that she was defiled; both of them followed the same path. 23:14 But she increased her prostitution. She saw men carved on the wall, images of the Chaldeans carved in bright red, 9 23:15 wearing belts on their waists and flowing turbans on their heads, all of them looking like officers, the image of Babylonians 10 whose native land is Chaldea. 23:16 When she saw them, 11 she lusted after them and sent messengers to them in Chaldea. 12 23:17 The Babylonians crawled into bed with her. 13 They defiled her with their lust; after she was defiled by them, she 14 became disgusted with them. 23:18 When she lustfully exposed her nakedness, 15 I 16 was disgusted with her, just as I 17 had been disgusted with her sister. 23:19 Yet she increased her prostitution, remembering the days of her youth when she engaged in prostitution in the land of Egypt. 23:20 She lusted after their genitals – as large as those of donkeys, 18 and their seminal emission was as strong as that of stallions. 23:21 This is how you assessed 19 the obscene conduct of your youth, when the Egyptians fondled 20 your nipples and squeezed 21 your young breasts.
sn Played the harlot refers to alliances with pagan nations in this context. In Ezek 16 harlotry described the sin of idolatry.
2 tn Heb “Assyria.”
3 tn The term apparently refers to Assyrian military officers; it is better construed with the description that follows. See D. I. Block, Ezekiel (NICOT), 1:738.
4 tn Heb “lusted after.”
5 tn Heb “and poured out their harlotry on her.”
6 tn Heb “I gave her into the hand of her lovers, into the hand of the sons of Assyria.”
7 tn Heb “name.”
8 tn The word “this” is not in the original text.
10 tn Heb “the sons of Babel.”
11 tn Heb “at the appearance of her eyes.”
13 tn Heb “The sons of Babel came to her on a bed of love.”
14 tn Heb “her soul.”
15 tn Heb “She exposed her harlotry and she exposed her nakedness.”
16 tn Heb “my soul.”
17 tn Heb “my soul.”
18 tn Heb “She lusted after their concubines (?) whose flesh was the flesh of donkeys.” The phrase “their concubines” is extremely problematic here. The pronoun is masculine plural, suggesting that the Egyptian men are in view, but how concubines would fit into the picture envisioned here is not clear. Some suggest that Ezekiel uses the term in an idiomatic sense of “paramour,” but this still fails to explain how the pronoun relates to the noun. It is more likely that the term refers here to the Egyptians’ genitals. The relative pronoun that follows introduces a more specific description of their genitals.
19 tn Or “you took note of.” The Hebrew verb פָּקַד (paqad) in the Qal implies evaluating something and then acting in light of that judgment; here the prophet depicts Judah as approving of her youthful unfaithfulness and then magnifying it at the present time. Some translations assume the verb should be repointed as a Niphal, rendering “you missed” or by extension “you longed for,” but such an extension of the Niphal “to be missing” is otherwise unattested.
21 tn Heb “for the sake of,” but the expression is awkward and is better emended to read “to squeeze.” See L. C. Allen, Ezekiel (WBC), 2:43.