6:1 The word of the Lord came to me: 6:2 “Son of man, turn toward 1 the mountains of Israel and prophesy against them: 6:3 Say, ‘Mountains of Israel, 2 Hear the word of the sovereign Lord! 3 This is what the sovereign Lord says to the mountains and the hills, to the ravines and the valleys: I am bringing 4 a sword against you, and I will destroy your high places. 5 6:4 Your altars will be ruined and your incense altars will be broken. I will throw down your slain in front of your idols. 6 6:5 I will place the corpses of the people of Israel in front of their idols, 7 and I will scatter your bones around your altars. 6:6 In all your dwellings, the cities will be laid waste and the high places ruined so that your altars will be laid waste and ruined, your idols will be shattered and demolished, your incense altars will be broken down, and your works wiped out. 8 6:7 The slain will fall among you and then you will know that I am the Lord. 9
6:8 “‘But I will spare some of you. Some will escape the sword when you are scattered in foreign lands. 10 6:9 Then your survivors will remember me among the nations where they are exiled. They will realize 11 how I was crushed by their unfaithful 12 heart which turned from me and by their eyes which lusted after their idols. They will loathe themselves 13 because of the evil they have done and because of all their abominable practices. 6:10 They will know that I am the Lord; my threats to bring this catastrophe on them were not empty.’ 14
6:11 “‘This is what the sovereign Lord says: Clap your hands, stamp your feet, and say, “Ah!” because of all the evil, abominable practices of the house of Israel, for they will fall by the sword, famine, and pestilence. 15 6:12 The one far away will die by pestilence, the one close by will fall by the sword, and whoever is left and has escaped these 16 will die by famine. I will fully vent my rage against them. 6:13 Then you will know that I am the Lord – when their dead lie among their idols around their altars, on every high hill and all the mountaintops, under every green tree and every leafy oak, 17 the places where they have offered fragrant incense to all their idols. 6:14 I will stretch out my hand against them 18 and make the land a desolate waste from the wilderness to Riblah, 19 in all the places where they live. Then they will know that I am the Lord!”
7:1 The word of the Lord came to me: 7:2 “You, son of man – this is what the sovereign Lord says to the land of Israel: An end! The end is coming on the four corners of the land! 20 7:3 The end is now upon you, and I will release my anger against you; I will judge 21 you according to your behavior, 22 I will hold you accountable for 23 all your abominable practices. 7:4 My eye will not pity you; I will not spare 24 you. 25 For I will hold you responsible for your behavior, 26 and you will suffer the consequences of your abominable practices. 27 Then you will know that I am the Lord!
7:5 “This is what the sovereign Lord says: A disaster 28 – a one-of-a-kind 29 disaster – is coming! 7:6 An end comes 30 – the end comes! 31 It has awakened against you 32 – the end is upon you! Look, it is coming! 33 7:7 Doom is coming upon you who live in the land! The time is coming, the day 34 is near. There are sounds of tumult, not shouts of joy, on the mountains. 35 7:8 Soon now I will pour out my rage 36 on you; I will fully vent my anger against you. I will judge you according to your behavior. I will hold you accountable for all your abominable practices. 7:9 My eye will not pity you; I will not spare 37 you. For your behavior I will hold you accountable, 38 and you will suffer the consequences of your abominable practices. Then you will know that it is I, the Lord, who is striking you. 39
7:10 “Look, the day! Look, it is coming! Doom has gone out! The staff has budded, pride has blossomed! 7:11 Violence 40 has grown into a staff that supports wickedness. Not one of them will be left 41 – not from their crowd, not from their wealth, not from their prominence. 42 7:12 The time has come; the day has struck! The customer should not rejoice, nor the seller mourn; for divine wrath 43 comes against their whole crowd. 7:13 The customer will no longer pay the seller 44 while both parties are alive, for the vision against their whole crowd 45 will not be revoked. Each person, for his iniquity, 46 will fail to preserve his life.
7:14 “They have blown the trumpet and everyone is ready, but no one goes to battle, because my anger is against their whole crowd. 47 7:15 The sword is outside; pestilence and famine are inside the house. Whoever is in the open field will die by the sword, and famine and pestilence will consume everyone in the city. 7:16 Their survivors will escape to the mountains and become like doves of the valleys; all of them will moan – each one for his iniquity. 7:17 All of their hands will hang limp; their knees will be wet with urine. 48 7:18 They will wear sackcloth, terror will cover them; shame will be on all their faces, and all of their heads will be shaved bald. 49 7:19 They will discard their silver in the streets, and their gold will be treated like filth. 50 Their silver and gold will not be able to deliver them on the day of the Lord’s fury. 51 They will not satisfy their hunger or fill their stomachs because their wealth 52 was the obstacle leading to their iniquity. 53 7:20 They rendered the beauty of his ornaments into pride, 54 and with it they made their abominable images – their detestable idols. Therefore I will render it filthy to them. 7:21 I will give it to foreigners as loot, to the world’s wicked ones as plunder, and they will desecrate it. 7:22 I will turn my face away from them and they will desecrate my treasured place. 55 Vandals will enter it and desecrate it. 56 7:23 (Make the chain, 57 because the land is full of murder 58 and the city is full of violence.) 7:24 I will bring the most wicked of the nations and they will take possession of their houses. I will put an end to the arrogance of the strong, and their sanctuaries 59 will be desecrated. 7:25 Terror 60 is coming! They will seek peace, but find none. 7:26 Disaster after disaster will come, and one rumor after another. They will seek a vision from a prophet; priestly instruction will disappear, along with counsel from the elders. 7:27 The king will mourn and the prince will be clothed with shuddering; the hands of the people of the land will tremble. Based on their behavior I will deal with them, and by their standard of justice 61 I will judge them. Then they will know that I am the Lord!”
8:1 In the sixth year, in the sixth month, on the fifth of the month, 62 as I was sitting in my house with the elders of Judah sitting in front of me, the hand 63 of the sovereign Lord seized me. 64 8:2 As I watched, I noticed 65 a form that appeared to be a man. 66 From his waist downward was something like fire, 67 and from his waist upward something like a brightness, 68 like an amber glow. 69 8:3 He stretched out the form 70 of a hand and grabbed me by a lock of hair on my head. Then a wind 71 lifted me up between the earth and sky and brought me to Jerusalem 72 by means of divine visions, to the door of the inner gate which faces north where the statue 73 which provokes to jealousy was located. 8:4 Then I perceived that the glory of the God of Israel was there, as in the vision I had seen earlier in the valley.
8:6 He said to me, “Son of man, do you see what they are doing – the great abominations that the people 75 of Israel are practicing here, to drive me far from my sanctuary? But you will see greater abominations than these!”
8:9 He said to me, “Go in and see the evil abominations they are practicing here.” 8:10 So I went in and looked. I noticed every figure 76 of creeping thing and beast – detestable images 77 – and every idol of the house of Israel, engraved on the wall all around. 78 8:11 Seventy men from the elders of the house of Israel 79 (with Jaazaniah son of Shaphan standing among them) were standing in front of them, each with a censer in his hand, and fragrant 80 vapors from a cloud of incense were swirling upward.
8:12 He said to me, “Do you see, son of man, what the elders of the house of Israel are doing in the dark, each in the chamber of his idolatrous images? 81 For they think, ‘The Lord does not see us! The Lord has abandoned the land!’” 8:13 He said to me, “You will see them practicing even greater abominations!”
8:14 Then he brought me to the entrance of the north gate of the Lord’s house. I noticed 82 women sitting there weeping for Tammuz. 83 8:15 He said to me, “Do you see this, son of man? You will see even greater abominations than these!”
8:16 Then he brought me to the inner court of the Lord’s house. Right there 84 at the entrance to the Lord’s temple, between the porch and the altar, 85 were about twenty-five 86 men with their backs to the Lord’s temple, 87 facing east – they were worshiping the sun 88 toward the east!
8:17 He said to me, “Do you see, son of man? Is it a trivial thing that the house of Judah commits these abominations they are practicing here? For they have filled the land with violence and provoked me to anger still further. Look, they are putting the branch to their nose! 89 8:18 Therefore I will act with fury! My eye will not pity them nor will I spare 90 them. When they have shouted in my ears, I will not listen to them.”
9:1 Then he shouted in my ears, “Approach, 91 you who are to visit destruction on the city, each with his destructive weapon in his hand!” 9:2 Next, I noticed 92 six men 93 coming from the direction of the upper gate 94 which faces north, each with his war club in his hand. Among them was a man dressed in linen with a writing kit 95 at his side. They came and stood beside the bronze altar.
9:3 Then the glory of the God of Israel went up from the cherub where it had rested to the threshold of the temple. 96 He called to the man dressed in linen who had the writing kit at his side. 9:4 The Lord said to him, “Go through the city of Jerusalem 97 and put a mark 98 on the foreheads of the people who moan and groan over all the abominations practiced in it.”
9:5 While I listened, he said to the others, 99 “Go through the city after him and strike people down; do no let your eye pity nor spare 100 anyone! 9:6 Old men, young men, young women, little children, and women – wipe them out! But do not touch anyone who has the mark. Begin at my sanctuary!” So they began with the elders who were at the front of the temple.
9:7 He said to them, “Defile the temple and fill the courtyards with corpses. Go!” So they went out and struck people down throughout the city. 9:8 While they were striking them down, I was left alone, and I threw myself face down and cried out, “Ah, sovereign Lord! Will you destroy the entire remnant of Israel when you pour out your fury on Jerusalem?”
9:9 He said to me, “The sin of the house of Israel and Judah is extremely great; the land is full of murder, and the city is full of corruption, 101 for they say, ‘The Lord has abandoned the land, and the Lord does not see!’ 102 9:10 But as for me, my eye will not pity them nor will I spare 103 them; I hereby repay them for what they have done.” 104
9:11 Next I noticed the man dressed in linen with the writing kit at his side bringing back word: “I have done just as you commanded me.”
1 tn Heb “set your face against.” The expression occurs at the beginning of Ezekiel’s prophetic oracles in Ezek 13:17; 20:46; 21:2; 25:2; 28:21; 29:2; 35:2; 38:2.
sn Based on comparison to a similar expression in Ugaritic, the phrase may imply that Ezekiel was to actually go to these locations to deliver his message.
2 tn The phrase “mountains of Israel” occurs only in the book of Ezekiel (6:2, 3; 19:9; 33:28; 34:13, 14; 35:12; 36:1, 4, 8; 37:22; 38:8; 39:2, 4, 17). The expression refers to the whole land of Israel.
sn The mountainous terrain of Israel would contrast with the exiles’ habitat in the river valley of Babylonia.
4 tn Heb “Look I, I am bringing.” The repetition of the pronoun draws attention to the speaker. The construction also indicates that the action is soon to come; the Lord is “about to bring a sword against” them.
5 tn The Hebrew term refers to elevated platforms where pagan sacrifices were performed.
6 tn Thirty-nine of the forty-eight biblical occurrences of this Hebrew word are found in the book of Ezekiel.
sn This verse is probably based on Lev 26:30 in which God forecasts that he will destroy their high places, cut off their incense altars, and set their corpses by the corpses of their idols.
7 tc This first sentence, which explains the meaning of the last sentence of the previous verse, does not appear in the LXX and may be an instance of a marginal explanatory note making its way into the text.
9 sn The phrase you will know that I am the
10 tn Heb “when you have fugitives from the sword among the nations, when you are scattered among the lands.”
11 tn The words “they will realize” are not in the Hebrew text; they are added here for stylistic reasons since this clause assumes the previous verb “to remember” or “to take into account.”
12 tn Heb “how I was broken by their adulterous heart.” The image of God being “broken” is startling, but perfectly natural within the metaphorical framework of God as offended husband. The idiom must refer to the intense grief that Israel’s unfaithfulness caused God. For a discussion of the syntax and semantics of the Hebrew text, see M. Greenberg, Ezekiel (AB), 1:134.
13 tn Heb adds “in their faces.”
16 tn Heb “the one who is left, the one who is spared.”
17 sn By referring to every high hill…all the mountaintops…under every green tree and every leafy oak Ezekiel may be expanding on the phraseology of Deut 12:2 (see 1 Kgs 14:23; 2 Kgs 16:4; 17:10; Jer 2:20; 3:6, 13; 2 Chr 28:4).
19 tc The Vulgate reads the name as “Riblah,” a city north of Damascus. The MT reads Diblah, a city otherwise unknown. The letters resh (ר) and dalet (ד) may have been confused in the Hebrew text. The town of Riblah was in the land of Hamath (2 Kgs 23:33) which represented the northern border of Israel (Ezek 47:14).
21 tn Or “punish” (cf. BDB 1047 s.v. שָׁפַט 3.c).
22 tn Heb “ways.”
23 tn Heb “I will place on you.”
24 tn The meaning of the Hebrew term is primarily emotional: “to pity,” which in context implies an action, as in being moved by pity in order to spare them from the horror of their punishment.
25 tn The pronoun “you” is not in the Hebrew text, but is implied.
26 tn “I will set your behavior on your head.”
27 tn Heb “and your abominable practices will be among you.”
29 tc So most Hebrew
30 tn Or “has come.”
31 tn Or “has come.”
32 tc With different vowels the verb rendered “it has awakened” would be the noun “the end,” as in “the end is upon you.” The verb would represent a phonetic wordplay. The noun by virtue of repetition would continue to reinforce the idea of the end. Whether verb or noun, this is the only instance to occur with this preposition.
33 tc For this entire verse, the LXX has only “the end is come.”
tn In each of the three cases of the verb translated with forms of “to come,” the form may either be a participle (“comes/is coming”) or a perfect (“has come”). Either form would indicate that the end is soon to arrive. This last form appears also to be feminine, although “end” is masculine. This shift may be looking ahead to the next verse, whose first noun (“Doom”) is feminine.
34 sn The day refers to the day of the Lord, a concept which, beginning in Amos 5:18-20, became a common theme in the OT prophetic books. It refers to a time when the Lord intervenes in human affairs as warrior and judge.
35 tc The LXX reads “neither tumult nor birth pains.” The LXX varies at many points from the MT in this chapter. The context suggests that one or both of these would be present on a day of judgment, thus favoring the MT. Perhaps more significant is the absence of “the mountains” in the LXX. If the ר (resh) in הָרִים (harim, “the mountains” not “on the mountains”) were a ד (dalet), which is a common letter confusion, then it could be from the same root as the previous word, הֵד (hed), meaning “the day is near – with destruction, not joyful shouting.”
36 tn The expression “to pour out rage” also occurs in Ezek 9:8; 14:19; 20:8, 13, 21; 22:31; 30:15; 36:18.
37 tn The meaning of the Hebrew term is primarily emotional: “to pity,” which in context implies an action, as in being moved by pity in order to spare them from the horror of their punishment.
38 tn Heb “According to your behavior I will place on you.”
39 tn The MT lacks “you.” It has been added for clarification.
40 tn Heb “the violence.”
41 tc The LXX reads “he will crush the wicked rod without confusion or haste.”
tn The verb has been supplied for the Hebrew text to clarify the sense.
42 tn The Hebrew word occurs only here in the OT.
43 tn Heb “wrath.” Context clarifies that God’s wrath is in view.
44 tc The translation follows the LXX for the first line of the verse, although the LXX has lost the second line due to homoioteleuton (similar endings of the clauses). The MT reads “The seller will not return to the sale.” This Hebrew reading has been construed as a reference to land redemption, the temporary sale of the use of property, with property rights returned to the seller in the year of Jubilee. But the context has no other indicator that land redemption is in view. If correct, the LXX evidence suggests that one of the cases of “the customer” has been replaced by “the seller” in the MT, perhaps due to hoimoioarcton (similar beginnings of the words).
45 tn The Hebrew word refers to the din or noise made by a crowd, and by extension may refer to the crowd itself.
46 tn Or “in their punishment.” The phrase “in/for [a person’s] iniquity” occurs fourteen times in Ezekiel: here and in v. 16; 3:18, 19; 4:17; 18:17, 18, 19, 20; 24:23; 33:6, 8, 9; 39:23. The Hebrew word for “iniquity” may also mean the “punishment for iniquity.”
47 tn The Hebrew word refers to the din or noise made by a crowd, and by extension may refer to the crowd itself.
48 tn Heb “their knees will run with water.” The expression probably refers to urination caused by fright, which is how the LXX renders the phrase. More colloquial English would simply be “they will wet their pants,” but as D. I. Block (Ezekiel [NICOT], 1:261, n. 98) notes, the men likely wore skirts which were short enough to expose urine on the knees.
49 tn Heb “baldness will be on their heads.”
52 tn Heb “it.” Apparently the subject is the silver and gold mentioned earlier (see L. C. Allen, Ezekiel [WBC], 1:102).
54 tc The MT reads “he set up the beauty of his ornament as pride.” The verb may be repointed as plural without changing the consonantal text. The Syriac reads “their ornaments” (plural), implying עֶדְיָם (’edyam) rather than עֶדְיוֹ (’edyo) and meaning “they were proud of their beautiful ornaments.” This understands “ornaments” in the common sense of women’s jewelry, which then were used to make idols. The singular suffix “his ornaments” would refer to using items from the temple treasury to make idols. D. I. Block points out the foreshadowing of Ezek 16:17 which, with Rashi and the Targum, supports the understanding that this is a reference to temple items. See D. I. Block, Ezekiel (NICOT), 1:265.
55 sn My treasured place probably refers to the temple (however, cf. NLT “my treasured land”).
56 sn Since the pronouns “it” are both feminine, they do not refer to the masculine “my treasured place”; instead they probably refer to Jerusalem or the land, both of which are feminine in Hebrew.
57 tc The Hebrew word “the chain” occurs only here in the OT. The reading of the LXX (“and they will make carnage”) seems to imply a Hebrew text of ַהבַּתּוֹק (habbattoq, “disorder, slaughter”) instead of הָרַתּוֹק (haratoq, “the chain”). The LXX is also translating the verb as a third person plural future and taking this as the end of the preceding verse. As M. Greenberg (Ezekiel [AB], 1:154) notes, this may refer to a chain for a train of exiles but “the context does not speak of exile but of the city’s fall. The versions guess desperately and we can do little better.”
59 sn Or “their holy places” (KJV, ASV, NASB, NCV, NRSV).
60 tn The Hebrew word occurs only here in the OT. It is interpreted based on a Syriac cognate meaning “to bristle or stiffen (in terror).”
61 tn Heb “and by their judgments.”
62 tc The LXX reads “In the sixth year, in the fifth month, on the fifth of the month.”
sn In the sixth year, in the sixth month, on the fifth of the month would be September 17, 592
63 tn Or “power.”
sn Hand in the OT can refer metaphorically to power, authority, or influence. In Ezekiel God’s hand being on the prophet is regularly associated with communication or a vision from God (3:14, 22; 8:1; 37:1; 40:1).
64 tn Heb “fell upon me there,” that is, God’s influence came over him.
65 tn The word הִנֵּה (hinneh, traditionally “behold”) indicates becoming aware of something and has been translated here as a verb (so also throughout the chapter).
66 tc The MT reads “fire” rather than “man,” the reading of the LXX. The nouns are very similar in Hebrew.
67 tc The MT reads “what appeared to be his waist and downwards was fire.” The LXX omits “what appeared to be,” reading “from his waist to below was fire.” Suggesting that “like what appeared to be” belongs before “fire,” D. I. Block (Ezekiel [NICOT], 1:277) points out the resulting poetic symmetry of form with the next line as followed in the translation here.
68 tc The LXX omits “like a brightness.”
73 tn Or “image.”
74 tn Heb “lift your eyes (to) the way of.”
75 tn Heb “house.”
76 tn Or “pattern.”
77 tn Heb “detestable.” The word is often used to describe the figures of foreign gods.
80 tn The Hebrew word occurs only here in the OT.
81 tn Heb “the room of his images.” The adjective “idolatrous” has been supplied in the translation for clarity.
sn This type of image is explicitly prohibited in the Mosaic law (Lev 26:1).
82 tn Given the context this could be understood as a shock, e.g., idiomatically “Good grief! I saw….”
83 sn The worship of Tammuz included the observation of the annual death and descent into the netherworld of the god Dumuzi. The practice was observed by women in the ancient Near East over a period of centuries.
84 tn The word הִנֵּה (hinneh, traditionally “behold”) indicates becoming aware of something.
86 tc The LXX reads “twenty” instead of twenty-five, perhaps because of the association of the number twenty with the Mesopotamian sun god Shamash.
tn Or “exactly twenty-five.”
87 sn The temple faced east.
88 tn Or “the sun god.”
sn The worship of astral entities may have begun during the reign of Manasseh (2 Kgs 21:5).
89 tn It is not clear what the practice of “holding a branch to the nose” indicates. A possible parallel is the Syrian relief of a king holding a flower to his nose as he worships the stars (ANEP 281). See L. C. Allen, Ezekiel (WBC), 1:145-46. The LXX glosses the expression as “Behold, they are like mockers.”
90 tn The meaning of the Hebrew term is primarily emotional: “to pity,” which in context implies an action, as in being moved by pity in order to spare them from the horror of their punishment.
91 tc Heb “they approached.” Reading the imperative assumes the same consonantal text but different vowels.
92 tn The word הִנֵּה (hinneh, traditionally “behold”) indicates becoming aware of something and has been translated here as a verb.
93 sn The six men plus the scribe would equal seven, which was believed by the Babylonians to be the number of planetary deities.
96 tn Heb “house.”
97 tn Heb “through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem.”
98 tn The word translated “mark” is in Hebrew the letter ת (tav). Outside this context the only other occurrence of the word is in Job 31:35. In ancient Hebrew script this letter was written like the letter X.
sn For a similar concept in the Bible, see Rev 7:2-4; 13:16; 14:9, 11; 20:4; 22:4.
99 tn Heb “to these he said in my ears.”
100 tn The meaning of the Hebrew term is primarily emotional: “to pity,” which in context implies an action, as in being moved by pity in order to spare them from the horror of their punishment.
103 tn The meaning of the Hebrew term is primarily emotional: “to pity,” which in context implies an action, as in being moved by pity in order to spare them from the horror of their punishment.