A summary of the history of Israel
1 It happened on the tenth day of the fifth month of the seventh year, some men from among the elders of Jerusalem came to consult Yahweh and sat in front of me. 2 Then the word of Yahweh came to me in these terms, 3 “Son of man, say to the elders of Israel: This is the word of Yahweh: Do you come to consult me? As I live, I will not answer you – word of Yahweh.
4 Judge them, son of man, will you judge them? Let them know about the detestable practices of their fathers. 5 Say to them:
5 This is what Yahweh has said: The day I chose Israel, I committed myself to the descendants of Jacob with an oath. I revealed myself to them in the land of Egypt and I swore to them, I am Yahweh, your God. 6 On that day I swore to them that I would take them out of Egypt to a country I had explored for them, a land flowing with milk and honey, the most splendid of lands.
7 I said to them: Let each one reject the horrors that attract him! Do not defile yourselves with the idols of Egypt. I am Yahweh, your God.
8 But they rebelled against me and would not listen; none of them rejected the horrors that attracted them, none abandoned the filthy idols of Israel. I then thought of pour ing out my fury on them, exhausting my anger against them in the land of Egypt. 9 But for the sake of my Name I relented, lest it be profaned in the sight of the nations where they lived, whose inhabitants had seen how I re vealed myself to the Israelites in bringing them out of Egypt.
10 So I brought them out of Egypt and led them to the desert. 11 I gave them my decrees and made my laws known to them, laws by which man lives provided he observes them. 12 I also gave them my sabbaths to be a sign be tween us, letting them know that I am Yahweh who makes them holy.
13 But Israel rebelled against me in the desert. They did not follow my decrees, they despised my laws by which man lives, provided he obeys them; they so profaned my sabbaths that in my fury I thought of destroying them in the desert.
14 But again I relented for the sake of my Name, lest it be profaned in the sight of the nations who saw me bring them out. 15 However I swore to them in the desert that I would not bring them to the land flowing with milk and honey that I had given them – the choicest of lands – 16 because they had despised my laws and had not followed my decrees; they had profaned my sabbaths, and their heart went after their idols. 17 But I had pity on them and did not destroy them; I did not do away with them in the desert.
18 I said to their children in the desert: Do not follow the example of your fathers; do not keep their practices and do not de file yourselves with their idols. 19 I am Yahweh, your God. Follow my decrees, observe my laws and practice them. 20 Keep my sabbaths holy and let them be a sign between us and you will know that I am Yahweh, your God.
21 But their children too rebelled against me; they did not follow my de crees or observe my laws; they did not carry out these laws by which man lives provided he obeys them. They profaned my sabbaths and I thought of pouring out my fury on them and exhausting my anger against them in the desert.
22 But once more I held back my hand lest my Name be profaned in the eyes of the nations that had seen me bring them out. 23 However I swore to them in the desert that I would scatter them among the nations and disperse them in other lands since they had not obeyed my laws, 24 but instead had defiled my sabbaths and had looked to the idols of their fathers. 25 In the meantime I gave them statutes that were not good and laws they could not live by, 26 so that they might be defiled by their gifts. I let them offer by fire all their firstborn, in order to shame them and let them know that I am Yahweh.
27 Therefore, son of man, speak to Israel; say to them: This is what Yahweh says: Do you not know that your fathers offended me by their infidelity? 28 I led them to the land I had sworn to give them, but whenever they saw a lofty hill or leafy tree they offered sacrifices. They provoked me with the offerings they made there – appeasing aromas and drink offerings. 29 Then I said to them, ‘What is this place to which you go?’ That is why they called it high place.
30 Say to Israel, thus says Yahweh: Since you follow your fathers in lusting after their abominations, 31 in bringing your gifts and in sacrificing your children by fire, never ceasing to defile yourselves with your idols, am I to answer when you consult, Israel? As I live, word of Yah weh, I will not answer you.
32 You have in mind to be like the other nations, worshiping wood and stone, but this shall not happen. 33 As I live, word of Yahweh, I will rule you with an iron hand, an outstretched arm and outpourings of wrath. 34 Then I will bring you from the midst of the nations and from the peoples where I have scattered you with a strong hand, an outstretched arm and outpourings of wrath. 35 I will lead you to the wilderness of Syria and 36 there I will enter into judgment with you face to face. Just as I judged your fathers in the desert of Egypt, 37 so will I judge you, word of Yahweh. I will make you feel my rod and sort you out. 38 I will rid you of rebels; though they go out from the land of their exile, they shall not enter the land of Israel and you will know that I am Yahweh.
39 People of Israel, this is what the Lord Yahweh says: Go, serve your idols, but in the end you will not refuse to listen to me. No longer shall you profane my holy Name with your gifts and your idols. 40 For it is on my holy mountain, the high mountain of Israel – word of Yahweh – that all Israel, all in the land, shall serve me. 41 There I will accept you as a pleasing fragrance when I bring you out from the nations and assemble you from the lands where you were dispersed, and through you my holiness will be shown to the nations.
42 You will know that I am Yahweh when I lead you to the land of Israel, to the land that I swore to your ancestors that I would give you. 43 And there you will remember your ways and all your deeds by which you defiled yourselves; and you shall loathe yourselves because of your evil ways. 44 You will know that I am Yahweh when I deal with you, Israel, for my Name’s sake and not according to your wickedness and corrupt deeds, word of Yahweh.