The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Prophecy of Ezechiel
Word came to me from the Lord:
Son of man, on the prophets pronounce my doom, the prophets whom Israel heeds; would they prophesy after their own devices? Give them this message from the Lord:
Out upon the reckless prophets, the Lord God says, that follow their own whim, and vision have none!
Poor Israel, that such foxes as these should burrow among thy ruins!
What did you to restore the fortunes of the day, when the Lord’s stroke fell? Not for you to man the breach, to throw up a wall about Israel!✻
Vain vision and cheating hopes are theirs, that warrant from me have none, yet speak in the Lord’s name, and look to see their word fulfilled;
has the Lord spoken? Not the Lord, only your empty dreams, your lying oracles.
For these vain visions, these cheating hopes of yours, have at you! says the Lord God.
On false prophet and sightless seer my hand is raised in judgement; never shall they take part in the assembly of Israel, or have their names written in its muster-roll, or find a home in Israel’s land! So shall you learn what manner of God the Lord is.
How dared they cheat my people with false hopes, crying, All’s well, when in truth all went amiss? My people, that strove to build a wall, and here were the prophets plastering it with clay that had no straw in it!
Thine to warn these unskilful plasterers that the wall must needs crumble; here is a rain-storm brewing, and I mean to ply it with a volley of great hail-stones, and a tempestuous wind that scatters all before it;
crumble your wall, shall no one ask what became of the mortar that went to its plastering?
Like a tempestuous wind my anger shall break out, the Lord God says; like the rain-storm my indignation shall be, and like a volley of hail-stones my vengeance shall take toll of you;
down shall come the wall you plastered so ill, razed to earth, and all its foundations shewing, overthrown to your common ruin; so you shall learn what manner of God the Lord is.
Wall nor plasterer my vengeance shall spare; Down with the wall, my sentence is, and down with the plasterers that plastered it so unworkmanly,
Israel’s prophets, that gave Jerusalem comfort, the Lord says, promising all should be well when all went amiss.
There are women, too, among this people of mine who would play the prophetess as their own whim bids them. Turn upon these, son of man, and tell them their doom:
Out upon them, says the Lord God, the women who stitch an elbow-cushion for every comer, make a soft pillow for the heads of young and old!✻ Men’s lives are their prey; shall they cast a net about the lives of Israelites, and save their own?
For a handful of meal, or a crust of bread, they will put me to shame✻ before my own people; will doom to life or death the undeserving, such credence they win from a people ever credulous.
Have at those elbow-cushions of yours, the Lord God says, the nets yonder silly birds are caught in! I mean to snatch them away from your grasp, and set the birds free, those lives you have ensnared with your prophesying.✻
Your pillows shall be torn in pieces; I will rescue my people from your power, and they shall no longer be yours to ensnare; then you will learn what manner of God the Lord is.
You have brought woe on innocent lives, when I was fain to comfort them, confirmed the sinner in those evil ways that shall be his undoing;
now there shall be no more of your empty visions, there shall be no more divinings; I mean to save my people from your clutches, and you shall know the Lord’s power at last.
The Holy Bible