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Jehovah’s Witnesses

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Ezekiel 20:1-49

20***  And in the year seven, in the fifth month, on the tenth of the month, men came, elders of the house of Israel, to inquire of Jehovah; and they sat down before me. 2  And Jehovah’s word came to me 3  “Man, speak to the elders of the house of Israel and say to them ‘Says the Lord Jehovah, Do you come to inquire of me? by my life, I will not be inquired of by you, quoth the Lord Jehovah’ 4*  Will you judge them, will you judge them, man? let them know of their fathers’ abominable doings, 5  and say to them ‘Says the Lord Jehovah, On the day that I chose Israel and pledged myself to the descendants of Jacob’s household and made myself known to them in Egypt, and pledged myself to them with the words “I am your God Jehovah,” 6  on that day I pledged myself to them to bring them out of Egypt to a country I had looked out for them, that ran milk and honey; all countries had that one as a crowning glory. 7  And I said to them “Each of you throw away his pet horrors, and do not be defiled with the fetishes of Egypt; I am your God Jehovah”; 8  but they disobeyed me and would not listen to me, did not throw away their pet horrors nor quit the fetishes of Egypt, and I thought of pouring out my ire over them to wreak my anger on them right in Egypt. 9  But I acted for the sake of my name, not to have it profaned under the eyes of the nations in whose midst they were, under whose eyes I had made myself known to them to bring them out of Egypt; 10  and I brought them out of Egypt and into the wilderness, 11  and gave them my usages and made known to them my laws, the things which man is to do and thereby have life; 12  and I gave them my sabbaths too, to become a token between them and me for them to know that I am Jehovah who hallow them. 13  But the house of Israel disobeyed me in the wilderness, did not go by my usages and rejected my laws, the things which man is to do and thereby have life, and grievously profaned my sabbaths; and I thought of pouring out my ire on them in the wilderness to make an end of them. 14  But I acted for the sake of my name, not to have it profaned under the eyes of the nations under whose eyes I had brought them out; 15  and I did withal vow to them in the wilderness not to bring them into the country I had given, that ran milk and honey,—all countries had that one as a crowning glory,— 16  since they rejected my laws, and my usages they did not go by, and my sabbaths they profaned, because their hearts were following their fetishes. 17  But my eye had too much mercy on them to make away with them, and I did not make an end of them in the wilderness. 18  “‘And I said to their sons in the wilderness “Do not go by your fathers’ usages nor keep their laws nor defile yourselves with their fetishes; 19  I am your God Jehovah: go by my usages and keep my laws and live up to them, 20  and keep my sabbaths sacred, and they shall become a token between me and you, for you to know that I am your God Jehovah.” 21  But the sons disobeyed me, did not go by my usages nor keep my laws, living up to them, the things which man is to do and thereby have life, and my sabbaths they profaned; and I thought of pouring out my ire over them to wreak my anger on them in the wilderness. 22  But I drew back my hand and acted for the sake of my name, not to have it profaned under the eyes of the nations under whose eyes I had brought them out; 23  and I did withal vow to them in the wilderness to scatter them among the nations and sprinkle them through the countries, 24  since they did not live up to my laws and rejected my usages and profaned my sabbaths, and their eyes followed their fathers’ fetishes. 25  And I did withal give them usages that were not good and laws whereby they should not have life, 26*  and I defiled them with their gifts, in the sending over of everyone that had started a womb, in order to leave them aghast.’ 27  “So speak to the house of Israel, man, and say to them ‘Says the Lord Jehovah, Your fathers put this insult too upon me in committing unfaithfulness against me: 28  I brought them into the country I had pledged myself to give them, and they saw every high hill and every leafy tree and offered their sacrifices there and gave there the affront of their offerings and produced their genial odors there and poured their libations there. 29  And I said to them “What is the height you hie to?” and it has been named height, hie-what, to this day.’ 30  “So say to the house of Israel ‘Says the Lord Jehovah, Are you defiling yourselves along your fathers’ lines, and are you prostituting yourselves to follow their disgustments, and are you defiling yourselves for all your fetishes till today 31  in lifting your gifts, in sending over your children through the fire, and am I to be inquired of by you, house of Israel? by my life, quoth the Lord Jehovah, I will not be inquired of by you, 32*  and what you have thought of shall not be, that you say “Let us be like the nations, like the clans of the various countries, serving wood and stone.” 33  By my life, quoth the Lord Jehovah, it will be with strong hand and with outstretched arm and with poured-out ire that I will be your king; 34  and I will bring you out of the peoples and gather you out of the countries in which you have been scattered with strong hand and with outstretched arm and with poured-out ire 35  and will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and I will try my case against you there face to face; 36  as I tried my case with your fathers in the wilderness of Egypt, so I will with you, quoth the Lord Jehovah. 37*  And I will have you pass under the rod, and will bring you in by number, 38  and clean out of you the rebels and those that defy me: I will bring them out of the country where they lived as immigrants, but they shall not come to Israel’s soil; and you shall know that I am Jehovah. 39*  And as for you, house of Israel, says the Lord Jehovah, go ahead, each of you worship his fetishes; but afterward you are going to listen to me and not profane my hallowed name any longer with your gifts and your fetishes, 40  but on my sacred highland, on Israel’s lofty highland, quoth the Lord Jehovah, there will all the whole house of Israel worship me in the country; there I will accept them and there I will inquire for your contributions and all your prime presentations in all your sacred rites. 41  For a genial odor I will accept you, when I bring you out of the peoples and gather you out of the countries in which you have been scattered, and I will vindicate my sanctity by you under the eyes of the nations; 42  and you shall know that I am Jehovah when I bring you to the soil of Israel, to the country I pledged myself to give to your fathers, 43  and there you shall remember all your courses and your practices by which you were defiled, and feel a loathing for your own faces at all the bad things you have done; 44  and you shall know that I am Jehovah when I act with you on account of my name—not in accordance with your bad courses and with your vicious practices, quoth the Lord Jehovah.’” 45  And Jehovah’s word came to me 46  “Man, face southward and preach southward, and prophesy against the wildwood in the South, and say to the woods of the South 47  ‘Hear Jehovah’s word: says the Lord Jehovah, Here I am lighting a fire in you and it will eat up every green tree and every dry tree in you; it will not be quenched, a blaze of flame, and all faces will be scorched by it from south to north, 48  and all mortals will see that I Jehovah have set it, it will not be quenched.’” 49  And I said “O, O, Lord Jehovah—those people are saying of me ‘but he is a parable-monger.’”

Footnotes

20:1 Conj. year thirty
20:1 Or came from the elders of
20:1, 3 Var. elders of Israel
20:4 Codd. Will you judge them, will you judge them, man?
20:26 Or in order to desolate them
20:32 Lit. of the countries
20:37 Or and will reduce you to a counted number
20:39 (but afterward you are going to) Susp.