1 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and thou shalt say to them,
On whatsoever land I shall bring a sword, and the people of the land take one man of them, and set him for their watchman: 3 and he shall see the sword coming upon the land, and blow the trumpet, and sound an alarm to the people; 4 and he that hears the sound of the trumpet shall hear indeed, and yet not take heed, and the sword shall come upon him, and overtake him, his blood shall be upon his own head. 5 Because he heard the sound of the trumpet, and took no heed, his blood shall be upon him: but the other, because he took heed, has delivered his soul.
6 But if the watchman see the sword coming, and do not sound the trumpet, and the people do not watch; and the sword come, and take a soul from among them, that soul is taken because of its iniquity; but the blood thereof will I require at the watchman's hand.
7 And thou, son of man, I have set thee as a watchman to the house of Israel, and thou shalt hear a word from my mouth. 8 When I say to the sinner, Thou shalt surely die; if thou speak not to warn the wicked from his way, the wicked himself shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. 9 But if thou forewarn the wicked of his way to turn from it, and he turn not from his way, he shall die in his ungodliness; but thou hast delivered thine own soul.
10 And thou, son of man, say to the house of Israel; Thus have ye spoken, saying, Our errors, and our iniquities weigh upon us, and we pine away in them, and how then shall we live? 11 Say to them, Thus saith the Lord; As I live, I desire not the death of the ungodly, as that the ungodly should turn from his way and live: turn ye heartily from your way; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?
12 Say to the children of thy people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him, in the day wherein he errs: and the iniquity of the ungodly shall not harm him, in the day wherein he turns from his iniquity, but the righteous erring shall not be able to deliver himself.
13 When I say to the righteous, Thou shalt live; and he trusts in his righteousness, and shall commit iniquity, none of his righteousnesses shall be remembered; in his unrighteousness which he has wrought, in it shall he die.
14 And when I say to the ungodly, Thou shalt surely die; and he shall turn from his sin, and do judgment and justice, 15 and return the pledge, and repay that which he has robbed, and walk in the ordinances of life, so as to do no wrong; he shall surely live, and shall not die. 16 None of his sins which he has committed shall be remembered: because he has wrought judgment and righteousness; by them shall he live.
17 Yet the children of thy people will say, The way of the Lord is not straight: whereas this their way is not straight. 18 When the righteous turns away from his righteousness, and shall commit iniquities, then shall he die in them. 19 And when the sinner turns from his iniquity, and shall do judgment and righteousness, he shall live by them. 20 And this is that which ye said, The way of the Lord is not straight. I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one for his ways.
21 And it came to pass in the tenth year of our captivity, in the twelfth month, on the fifth day of the month, that one that had escaped from Jerusalem came to me, saying, The city is taken. 22 Now the hand of the Lord had come upon me in the evening, before he came; and he opened my mouth, when he came to me in the morning: and my mouth was open, it was no longer kept closed.
23 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 24 Son of man, they that inhabit the desolate places on the land of Israel say, Abraam was one, and he possessed the land: and we are more numerous; to us the land is given for a possession.
25 Therefore say to them, Thus saith the Lord God, 27 As I live, surely they that are in the desolate places shall fall by swords, and they that are in the open plain shall be given for food to the wild beasts of the field, and them that are in the fortified cities and them that are in the caves I will slay with pestilence. 28 And I will make the land desert, and the pride of her strength shall perish; and the mountains of Israel shall be made desolate by reason of no man passing through. 29 And they shall know that I am the Lord; and I will make their land desert, and it shall be made desolate because of all their abominations which they have wrought.
30 And as for thee, son of man, the children of thy people are they that speak concerning thee by the walls, and in the porches of the houses, and they talk one to another, saying, Let us come together, and let us hear the words that proceed from the Lord. 31 They approach thee as a people comes together, and sit before thee, and hear thy words, but they will not do them: for there is falsehood in their mouth, and their heart goes after their pollutions. 32 And thou art to them as the sound of a sweet, well-tuned psaltery, and they will hear thy words, but they will not do them. 33 But whenever it shall come to pass, they will say, Behold, it is come: and they shall know that there was a prophet in the midst of them.