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Ezekiel - Chapter 16

1 The word of Yahweh was addressed to me as follows,

2 'Son of man, confront Jerusalem with her loathsome practices!

3 Say, "The Lord Yahweh says this: By origin and birth you belong to the land of Canaan. Your father was an Amorite and your mother a Hittite.

4 At birth, the very day you were born, there was no one to cut your navel-string, or wash you in water to clean you, or rub you with salt, or wrap you in swaddling clothes.

5 No one looked at you with pity enough to do any of these things out of sympathy for you. You were exposed in the open fields in your own dirt on the day you were born.

6 "I saw you kicking on the ground in your blood as I was passing, and I said to you as you lay in your blood: Live!

7 and I made you grow like the grass of the fields. You developed, you grew, you reached marriageable age. Your breasts became firm and your hair grew richly, but you were stark naked.

8 Then I saw you as I was passing. Your time had come, the time for love. I spread my cloak over you and covered your nakedness; I gave you my oath, I made a covenant with you -- declares the Lord Yahweh -- and you became mine.

9 I bathed you in water, I washed the blood off you, I anointed you with oil.

10 I gave you embroidered dresses, fine leather shoes, a linen headband and a cloak of silk.

11 I loaded you with jewels, gave you bracelets for your wrists and a necklace for your throat.

12 I gave you nose-ring and earrings; I put a beautiful diadem on your head.

13 You were loaded with gold and silver and dressed in linen and silk and brocade. Your food was the finest flour, honey and oil. You grew more and more beautiful; and you rose to be queen.

14 The fame of your beauty spread through the nations, since it was perfect, because I had clothed you with my own splendour -- declares the Lord Yahweh.

15 "But you became infatuated with your own beauty and used your fame to play the whore, lavishing your debauchery on all comers.

16 You took some of your clothes to make for yourself high places bright with colours and there you played the whore.

17 You also took your jewellery, made with my gold and silver which I had given you, and made yourself male images to serve your whorings.

18 You took your embroidered clothes and used these to dress them up, and you offered them my oil and my incense.

19 And the bread I gave you, the finest flour, the oil and honey with which I fed you, you offered them as a pleasing smell. "What is more -- declares the Lord Yahweh-

20 you took the sons and daughters you had borne me and sacrificed them as food to the images. Was not your whoring enough in itself,

21 for you to slaughter my children and hand them over to be burnt in their honour?

22 And in all your loathsome practices and your whorings you never called your early days to mind, when you were stark naked, kicking on the ground in your own blood.

23 "To crown your wickedness -- disaster upon you, disaster! declares the Lord Yahweh-

24 you built yourself a mound and made yourself a high place in every open space.

25 At the entry to every alley you made yourself a high place, defiling your beauty and opening your legs to all comers in countless acts of fornication.

26 You have also fornicated with your big-membered neighbours, the Egyptians, provoking my anger with further acts of fornication.

27 So now I have raised my hand against you, I have cut down on your food, I have put you at the mercy of your enemies, the Philistine women, who blush at your lewd behaviour.

28 Still unsatisfied, you prostituted yourself to the Assyrians; you played the whore with them, but were not satisfied even then.

29 You committed further acts of fornication in the country of merchants, with the Chaldaeans, and these did not satisfy you either.

30 "How simple-minded you are!-declares the Lord Yahweh -- for although you do all the things that a professional prostitute would,

31 in building a mound and making yourself a high place in every street, you do not act like a proper prostitute because you disdain to take a fee.

32 An adulteress welcomes strangers instead of her husband.

33 All prostitutes accept presents, but you give presents to all your lovers, you bribe them to come from all over the place to fornicate with you!

34 In fornicating, you are the opposite of other women, since no one runs after you to fornicate with you; since you give the fee and do not get one, you are the very opposite!

35 "Very well, whore, hear the word of Yahweh!

36 The Lord Yahweh says this: For having squandered your money and let yourself be seen naked while whoring with your lovers and all the foul idols of your loathsome practices and for giving them your children's blood-

37 for all this, I shall assemble all the lovers to whom you have given pleasure, all the ones you liked and also all the ones you disliked; yes, I shall assemble them round you and strip you naked in front of them, and let them see you naked from head to foot.

38 I shall pass on you the sentence that adulteresses and murderesses receive; I shall hand you over to their jealous fury;

39 I shall hand you over to them; they will destroy your mound and pull down your high place; they will tear off your clothes, take away your jewels and leave you stark naked.

40 Then they will call an assembly of citizens to deal with you, who will stone you to death and hack you to pieces with their swords,

41 and burn down your premises and execute justice on you, while many other women look on; and I shall put an end to your whoring: no more paid lovers for you!

42 Once my fury is exhausted with you, then my jealousy will leave you; I shall be calm and not angry any more.

43 Since you never called to mind your early days and have done nothing but provoke me, now I in my turn shall bring your conduct down on your own head -- declares the Lord Yahweh! "Have you not added this lewd behaviour to your other loathsome practices?

44 So now all dealers in proverbs will apply this one to you: Like mother, like daughter.

45 Yes; you are a true daughter of your mother, who hated her husband and her children; you are a true sister of your sisters, who hated their husbands and their children. Your mother was a Hittite and your father an Amorite.

46 Your elder sister is Samaria, who lives to the north of you with her daughters. Your younger sister is Sodom, who lives to the south of you with her daughters.

47 You never failed to imitate their behaviour and copy their loathsome practices, and soon your behaviour was more corrupt than theirs was.

48 As I live -- declares the Lord Yahweh -- your sister Sodom and her daughters never did what you and your daughters have done.

49 The crime of your sister Sodom was pride, gluttony, calm complacency; such were hers and her daughters' crimes. They never helped the poor and needy;

50 they were proud, and engaged in loathsome practices before me, and so I swept them away as you have seen.

51 And yet Samaria never committed half the crimes that you have. "You have done more loathsome things than they have. By all your loathsome practices you have made your sisters seem innocent,

52 and now you bear the shame of which you have freed your sisters; since the sins which you have committed are more revolting than theirs, they are more upright than you are. So now, bear the disgrace and shame of having put your sisters in the right.

53 "I shall restore their fortunes, I shall restore Sodom and her daughters, I shall re- store Samaria and her daughters, and then I shall restore your fortune with theirs,

54 so that you can bear your shame and disgrace for all you have done, and so console them.

55 When your sisters, Sodom and her daughters, are restored to what they were, and Samaria and her daughters are restored to what they were, then you too and your daughters will be restored to what you were.

56 Did you not gloat over your sister Sodom when you were so proud,

57 before you were stripped naked? Like her, you are now the laughing-stock of the women of Edom, of all the women round, of the women of Philistia, who pour out their contempt on you.

58 You have brought this on yourself, with your lewdness and your loathsome practices -- declares the Lord Yahweh.

59 "For the Lord Yahweh says this: I shall treat you as you have deserved for making light of an oath and breaking a covenant,

60 but I shall remember my covenant with you when you were a girl and shall conclude a covenant with you that will last for ever.

61 And you for your part will remember your behaviour and feel ashamed of it when you receive your elder and younger sisters and I make them your daughters, although this is not included in my covenant with you.

62 I shall renew my covenant with you; and you will know that I am Yahweh,

63 and so remember and feel ashamed and in your confusion be reduced to silence, when I forgive you for everything you have done -- declares the Lord Yahweh." '

Book of Ezekiel Chapters

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