Ezekiel 18-20 American Standard Version

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The Soul That Sins Shall Die

18 1  The word of Jehovah came unto me again, saying, 2  What mean ye, that ye use this proverb concerning the land of Israel, saying, The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set on edge? 3  As I live, saith the Lord Jehovah, ye shall not have [occasion] any more to use this proverb in Israel. 4  Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die. 5  But if a man be just, and do that which is lawful and right, 6  and hath not eaten upon the mountains, neither hath lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, neither hath defiled his neighbor's wife, neither hath come near to a woman in her impurity, 7  and hath not wronged any, but hath restored to the debtor his pledge, hath taken nought by robbery, hath given his bread to the hungry, and hath covered the naked with a garment; 8  he that hath not given forth upon interest, neither hath taken any increase, that hath withdrawn his hand from iniquity, hath executed true justice between man and man, 9  hath walked in my statutes, and hath kept mine ordinances, to deal truly; he is just, he shall surely live, saith the Lord Jehovah.

10  If he beget a son that is a robber, a shedder of blood, and that doeth any one of these things, 11  and that doeth not any of those [duties], but even hath eaten upon the mountains, and defiled his neighbor's wife, 12  hath wronged the poor and needy, hath taken by robbery, hath not restored the pledge, and hath lifted up his eyes to the idols, hath committed abomination, 13  hath given forth upon interest, and hath taken increase; shall he then live? he shall not live: he hath done all these abominations; he shall surely die; his blood shall be upon him. 14  Now, lo, if he beget a son, that seeth all his father's sins, which he hath done, and feareth, and doeth not such like; 15  that hath not eaten upon the mountains, neither hath lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, hath not defiled his neighbor's wife, 16  neither hath wronged any, hath not taken aught to pledge, neither hath taken by robbery, but hath given his bread to the hungry, and hath covered the naked with a garment; 17  that hath withdrawn his hand from the poor, that hath not received interest nor increase, hath executed mine ordinances, hath walked in my statutes; he shall not die for the iniquity of his father, he shall surely live. 18  As for his father, because he cruelly oppressed, robbed his brother, and did that which is not good among his people, behold, he shall die in his iniquity. 19  Yet say ye, Wherefore doth not the son bear the iniquity of the father? when the son hath done that which is lawful and right, and hath kept all my statutes, and hath done them, he shall surely live. 20  The soul that sinneth, it shall die: the son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son; the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.

God's Way Is Just

21  But if the wicked turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. 22  None of his transgressions that he hath committed shall be remembered against him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live. 23  Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked? saith the Lord Jehovah; and not rather that he should return from his way, and live? 24  But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? None of his righteous deeds that he hath done shall be remembered: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die. 25  Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel: Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal? 26  When the righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and dieth therein; in his iniquity that he hath done shall he die. 27  Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. 28  Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die. 29  Yet saith the house of Israel, The way of the Lord is not equal. O house of Israel, are not my ways equal? are not your ways unequal?

30  Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord Jehovah. Return ye, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. 31  Cast away from you all your transgressions, wherein ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? 32  For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord Jehovah: wherefore turn yourselves, and live.

A Lamentation for the Princes of Israel

19 1  Moreover, take thou up a lamentation for the princes of Israel, 2  and say, What was thy mother? A lioness: she couched among lions, in the midst of the young lions she nourished her whelps. 3  And she brought up one of her whelps: he became a young lion, and he learned to catch the prey; he devoured men. 4  The nations also heard of him; he was taken in their pit; and they brought him with hooks unto the land of Egypt. 5  Now when she saw that she had waited, and her hope was lost, then she took another of her whelps, and made him a young lion. 6  And he went up and down among the lions; he became a young lion, and he learned to catch the prey; he devoured men. 7  And he knew their palaces, and laid waste their cities; and the land was desolate, and the fulness thereof, because of the noise of his roaring. 8  Then the nations set against him on every side from the provinces; and they spread their net over him; he was taken in their pit. 9  And they put him in a cage with hooks, and brought him to the king of Babylon; they brought him into strongholds, that his voice should no more be heard upon the mountains of Israel.

10  Thy mother was like a vine, in thy blood, planted by the waters: it was fruitful and full of branches by reason of many waters. 11  And it had strong rods for the sceptres of them that bare rule, and their stature was exalted among the thick boughs, and they were seen in their height with the multitude of their branches. 12  But it was plucked up in fury, it was cast down to the ground, and the east wind dried up its fruit: its strong rods were broken off and withered; the fire consumed them. 13  And now it is planted in the wilderness, in a dry and thirsty land. 14  And fire is gone out of the rods of its branches, it hath devoured its fruit, so that there is in it no strong rod to be a sceptre to rule. This is a lamentation, and shall be for a lamentation.

God's Dealing with Israel

20 1  And it came to pass in the seventh year, in the fifth [month], the tenth [day] of the month, that certain of the elders of Israel came to inquire of Jehovah, and sat before me. 2  And the word of Jehovah came unto me, saying, 3  Son of man, speak unto the elders of Israel, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Is it to inquire of me that ye are come? As I live, saith the Lord Jehovah, I will not be inquired of by you. 4  Wilt thou judge them, son of man, wilt thou judge them? Cause them to know the abominations of their fathers;

5  and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: In the day when I chose Israel, and sware unto the seed of the house of Jacob, and made myself known unto them in the land of Egypt, when I sware unto them, saying, I am Jehovah your God; 6  in that day I sware unto them, to bring them forth out of the land of Egypt into a land that I had searched out for them, flowing with milk and honey, which is the glory of all lands. 7  And I said unto them, Cast ye away every man the abominations of his eyes, and defile not yourselves with the idols of Egypt; I am Jehovah your God. 8  But they rebelled against me, and would not hearken unto me; they did not every man cast away the abominations of their eyes, neither did they forsake the idols of Egypt. Then I said I would pour out my wrath upon them, to accomplish my anger against them in the midst of the land of Egypt. 9  But I wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be profaned in the sight of the nations, among which they were, in whose sight I made myself known unto them, in bringing them forth out of the land of Egypt.

10  So I caused them to go forth out of the land of Egypt, and brought them into the wilderness. 11  And I gave them my statutes, and showed them mine ordinances, which if a man do, he shall live in them. 12  Moreover also I gave them my sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them, that they might know that I am Jehovah that sanctifieth them. 13  But the house of Israel rebelled against me in the wilderness: they walked not in my statutes, and they rejected mine ordinances, which if a man keep, he shall live in them; and my sabbaths they greatly profaned. Then I said I would pour out my wrath upon them in the wilderness, to consume them. 14  But I wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be profaned in the sight of the nations, in whose sight I brought them out. 15  Moreover also I sware unto them in the wilderness, that I would not bring them into the land which I had given them, flowing with milk and honey, which is the glory of all lands; 16  because they rejected mine ordinances, and walked not in my statutes, and profaned my sabbaths: for their heart went after their idols. 17  Nevertheless mine eye spared them, and I destroyed them not, neither did I make a full end of them in the wilderness. 18  And I said unto their children in the wilderness, Walk ye not in the statutes of your fathers, neither observe their ordinances, nor defile yourselves with their idols. 19  I am Jehovah your God: walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances, and do them; 20  and hallow my sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between me and you, that ye may know that I am Jehovah your God. 21  But the children rebelled against me; they walked not in my statutes, neither kept mine ordinances to do them, which if a man do, he shall live in them; they profaned my sabbaths. Then I said I would pour out my wrath upon them, to accomplish my anger against them in the wilderness. 22  Nevertheless I withdrew my hand, and wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be profaned in the sight of the nations, in whose sight I brought them forth. 23  Moreover I sware unto them in the wilderness, that I would scatter them among the nations, and disperse them through the countries; 24  because they had not executed mine ordinances, but had rejected my statutes, and had profaned my sabbaths, and their eyes were after their fathers' idols. 25  Moreover also I gave them statutes that were not good, and ordinances wherein they should not live; 26  and I polluted them in their own gifts, in that they caused to pass through [the fire] all that openeth the womb, that I might make them desolate, to the end that they might know that I am Jehovah.

27  Therefore, son of man, speak unto the house of Israel, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: In this moreover have your fathers blasphemed me, in that they have committed a trespass against me. 28  For when I had brought them into the land, which I sware to give unto them, then they saw every high hill, and every thick tree, and they offered there their sacrifices, and there they presented the provocation of their offering; there also they made their sweet savor, and they poured out there their drink-offerings. 29  Then I said unto them, What meaneth the high place whereunto ye go? So the name thereof is called Bamah unto this day. 30  Wherefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Do ye pollute yourselves after the manner of your fathers? and play ye the harlot after their abominations? 31  and when ye offer your gifts, when ye make your sons to pass through the fire, do ye pollute yourselves with all your idols unto this day? and shall I be inquired of by you, O house of Israel? As I live, saith the Lord Jehovah, I will not be inquired of by you; 32  and that which cometh into your mind shall not be at all, in that ye say, We will be as the nations, as the families of the countries, to serve wood and stone.

33  As I live, saith the Lord Jehovah, surely with a mighty hand, and with an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out, will I be king over you: 34  and I will bring you out from the peoples, and will gather you out of the countries wherein ye are scattered, with a mighty hand, and with an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out; 35  and I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there will I enter into judgment with you face to face. 36  Like as I entered into judgment with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so will I enter into judgment with you, saith the Lord Jehovah. 37  And I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant; 38  and I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me; I will bring them forth out of the land where they sojourn, but they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I am Jehovah. 39  As for you, O house of Israel, thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Go ye, serve every one his idols, and hereafter also, if ye will not hearken unto me; but my holy name shall ye no more profane with your gifts, and with your idols. 40  For in my holy mountain, in the mountain of the height of Israel, saith the Lord Jehovah, there shall all the house of Israel, all of them, serve me in the land: there will I accept them, and there will I require your offerings, and the first-fruits of your oblations, with all your holy things. 41  As a sweet savor will I accept you, when I bring you out from the peoples, and gather you out of the countries wherein ye have been scattered; and I will be sanctified in you in the sight of the nations. 42  And ye shall know that I am Jehovah, when I shall bring you into the land of Israel, into the country which I sware to give unto your fathers. 43  And there shall ye remember your ways, and all your doings, wherein ye have polluted yourselves; and ye shall loathe yourselves in your own sight for all your evils that ye have committed. 44  And ye shall know that I am Jehovah, when I have dealt with you for my name's sake, not according to your evil ways, nor according to your corrupt doings, O ye house of Israel, saith the Lord Jehovah.

The Prophecy against the South

45  And the word of Jehovah came unto me, saying, 46  Son of man, set thy face toward the south, and drop [thy word] toward the south, and prophesy against the forest of the field in the South; 47  and say to the forest of the South, Hear the word of Jehovah: Thus saith the Lord Jehovah, Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee, and every dry tree: the flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burnt thereby. 48  And all flesh shall see that I, Jehovah, have kindled it; it shall not be quenched. 49  Then said I, Ah Lord Jehovah! they say of me, Is he not a speaker of parables?

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