The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Prophecy of Ezechiel
Thereupon a transport seized me, carrying me off to the gate of the temple that looks eastward; and here were twenty-five men at the gate’s threshold, with two nobles, Jezonias son of Azur and Pheltias son of Benaias, plain to be seen among them.
Son of man, the divine voice said to me, here are folk that plot mischief, and give the city ruinous counsel.
What, say they, have we not houses here newly built? We may lie as snug here as meat in a cooking-pot.✻
Tell them of their doom, son of man, tell them of their doom.
With that, the spirit of the Lord came full upon me, and bade me speak. This message I gave them from the Lord of hosts, These are your own words, men of Israel; can I not read your hearts?
So many done to death in this city, you have filled all the streets of it with bodies of the slain!
You have peopled it with the dead, says the Lord God; their flesh it is shall line yonder cooking-pot; as for you, I will fetch you out of it.
The sword it is you dread, and to the sword I doom you, the Lord God says;
out of it you shall come, and fall into the enemy’s hands, and be punished as you deserve.
Doomed to fall by the sword, up and down the countryside of Israel; then you shall learn what manner of God the Lord is!
Cooking-pot is none here to shelter you; up and down the country-side you shall meet your sentence,
and learn what manner of God it is whose paths you have left untrodden, whose will you have disobeyed, to follow the ill customs of your neighbours!
So, in my vision, I prophesied, and while I was prophesying, Pheltias the son of Banaias sank down dead. Thereupon I fell face to earth, crying aloud, Alas, alas, Lord God, wilt thou take full toll of the remnant left to Israel?
But the Lord’s answer came to me:
Thou hast brethren, son of man, thou hast brethren still. They are nearest of kin to thee that are far away, exiled sons of Israel. What though these dwellers at Jerusalem cry, Keep your distance, the land is ours?
Not such is the message the Lord God sends them; Far away I have banished them, says he, widely scattered them; yet, go they where they will, a sanctuary in little they shall find in my companionship.
Tell them this, from the Lord God, Lost among the peoples, I will gather you, scattered over the world, I will muster you, and give you the land of Israel for your home.
To it they shall find their way, and rid it of all that is foul, all that is abominable there;
one mind they shall have, and a new spirit shall fill their inmost being; gone the heart of stone, and a human heart theirs in place of it.
My paths they shall tread, my will jealously obey, they my people, and I their God.
Only where men’s hearts are set on their own foul abominations, the Lord God says, they shall bear their punishment.
And now the cherubim spread their wings for flight, the wheels beside them, the bright presence of the Lord above them;
and that presence, withdrawn from the city’s midst, came to rest upon the mountain height eastwards of it.
With that, a fresh transport seized me, and I was back among the exiles in Chaldaea, still in a trance, still full of the divine impulse. So the vision faded from my eyes,
and I told the exiles all the Lord had made known to me.
The Holy Bible