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Ezekiel 21:28-32

Context

21:28 “As for you, son of man, prophesy and say, ‘This is what the sovereign Lord says concerning the Ammonites and their coming humiliation; 1  say:

“‘A sword, a sword drawn for slaughter,

polished to consume, 2  to flash like lightning –

21:29 while seeing false visions for you

and reading lying omens for you 3 

to place that sword 4  on the necks of the profane wicked, 5 

whose day has come,

the time of final punishment.

21:30 Return it to its sheath! 6 

In the place where you were created, 7 

in your native land, I will judge you.

21:31 I will pour out my anger on you;

the fire of my fury I will blow on you.

I will hand you over to brutal men,

who are skilled in destruction.

21:32 You will become fuel for the fire –

your blood will stain the middle of the land; 8 

you will no longer be remembered,

for I, the Lord, have spoken.’”

1 tn Heb “their reproach.”

2 tn Heb “to contain, endure.” Since the Hebrew text as it stands makes little, if any, sense, most emend the text to read either “to consume” or “for destruction.” For discussion of options see D. I. Block, Ezekiel (NICOT), 1:693.

3 tn Heb “in the seeing concerning you falsehood, in divining concerning you a lie.” This probably refers to the attempts of the Ammonites to ward off judgment through prophetic visions and divination.

4 tn Heb “you”; the referent (the sword mentioned in v. 28) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

5 sn The second half of the verse appears to state that the sword of judgment would fall upon the wicked, despite their efforts to prevent it.

6 sn Once the Babylonian king’s sword (vv. 19-20) has carried out its assigned task, the Lord commands it to halt and announces that Babylon itself will also experience his judgment. See L. C. Allen, Ezekiel (WBC), 2:28.

7 tn In the Hebrew text of vv. 30-32 the second person verbal and pronominal forms are feminine singular. This may indicate that the personified Babylonian sword is being addressed. The Hebrew word for “sword” (see v. 28) is feminine. However, it may refer to the Ammonites.

8 tn Heb “your blood will be in the middle of the land.”



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