SCRIPTURE REFERENCES FOR THIS SERMON:
4:1 “And you, son of man, take a brick and set it in front of you. Inscribe a city on it—Jerusalem. 2 Lay siege to it! Build siege works against it. Erect a siege ramp against it! Post soldiers outside it and station battering rams around it. 3 Then for your part take an iron frying pan and set it up as an iron wall between you and the city. Set your face toward it. It is to be under siege; you are to besiege it. This is a sign for the house of Israel.
4 “Also for your part lie on your left side and place the iniquity of the house of Israel on it. For the number of days you lie on your side you will bear their iniquity. 5 I have determined that the number of the years of their iniquity are to be the number of days for you—390 days. So bear the iniquity of the house of Israel.
6 “When you have completed these days, then lie down a second time, but on your right side, and bear the iniquity of the house of Judah 40 days—I have assigned one day for each year. 7 You must turn your face toward the siege of Jerusalem with your arm bared and prophesy against it. 8 Look here: I will tie you up with ropes, so you cannot turn from one side to the other until you complete the days of your siege.
9 “As for you, take wheat, barley, beans, lentils, millet, and spelt, put them in a single container, and make food from them for yourself. For the same number of days that you lie on your side—390 days—you will eat it. 10 The food you eat will be eight ounces a day by weight; you must eat it at fixed times. 11 And you must drink water by measure, a pint and a half; you must drink it at fixed times. 12 And you must eat the food as you would a barley cake. You must bake it in front of them over a fire made with dried human excrement.” 13 And the Lord said, “This is how the people of Israel will eat their unclean food among the nations where I will banish them.”
14 And I said, “Ah, Sovereign Lord, I have never been ceremonially defiled before. I have never eaten a carcass or an animal torn by wild beasts; from my youth up, unclean meat has never entered my mouth.”
15 So he said to me, “All right then, I will substitute cow’s manure instead of human excrement. You will cook your food over it.”
16 Then he said to me, “Son of man, I am about to remove the bread supply in Jerusalem. They will eat their bread ration anxiously, and they will drink their water ration in terror 17 because they will lack bread and water. Each one will be terrified, and they will rot for their iniquity.
5:1 “As for you, son of man, take a sharp sword and use it as a barber’s razor. Shave off some of the hair from your head and your beard. Then take scales and divide up the hair you cut off. 2 Burn a third of it in the fire inside the city when the days of your siege are completed. Take a third and slash it with a sword all around the city. Scatter a third to the wind, and I will unleash a sword behind them. 3 But take a few strands of hair from those and tie them in the ends of your garment. 4 Again, take more of them and throw them into the fire, and burn them up. From there a fire will spread to all the house of Israel.
5 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: This is Jerusalem; I placed her in the center of the nations with countries all around her. 6 Then she defied my regulations and my statutes, becoming more wicked than the nations and the countries around her. Indeed, they have rejected my regulations, and they do not follow my statutes.
7 “Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: Because you are more arrogant than the nations around you, you have not followed my statutes and have not carried out my regulations. You have not even carried out the regulations of the nations around you!
8 “Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I—even I—am against you, and I will execute judgment among you while the nations watch. 9 I will do to you what I have never done before and will never do again because of all your abominable practices. 10 Therefore, fathers will eat their sons within you, Jerusalem, and sons will eat their fathers. I will execute judgments on you, and I will scatter any survivors to the winds.
11 “Therefore, as surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, because you defiled my sanctuary with all your detestable idols and with all your abominable practices, I will withdraw; my eye will not pity you, nor will I spare you. 12 A third of your people will die of plague or be overcome by the famine within you. A third of your people will fall by the sword surrounding you, and a third I will scatter to the winds. I will unleash a sword behind them. 13 Then my anger will be fully vented; I will exhaust my rage on them, and I will be appeased. Then they will know that I, the Lord, have spoken in my jealousy when I have fully vented my rage against them.
14 “I will make you desolate and an object of scorn among the nations around you, in the sight of everyone who passes by. 15 You will be an object of scorn and taunting, a prime example of destruction among the nations around you when I execute judgments against you in anger and raging fury. I, the Lord, have spoken! 16 I will shoot against them deadly, destructive arrows of famine, which I will shoot to destroy you. I will prolong a famine on you and will remove the bread supply. 17 I will send famine and wild beasts against you, and they will take your children from you. Plague and bloodshed will overwhelm you, and I will bring a sword against you. I, the Lord, have spoken!”
6:1 The Lord’s message came to me: 2 “Son of man, turn toward the mountains of Israel and prophesy against them. 3 Say, ‘Mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Sovereign Lord! This is what the Sovereign Lord says to the mountains and the hills, to the ravines and the valleys: I am bringing a sword against you, and I will destroy your high places. 4 Your altars will be ruined and your incense altars will be broken. I will throw down your slain in front of your idols. 5 I will place the corpses of the people of Israel in front of their idols, and I will scatter your bones around your altars. 6 In all your dwellings, the cities will be laid waste and the high places ruined so that your altars will be laid waste and ruined, your idols will be shattered and demolished, your incense altars will be broken down, and your works wiped out. 7 The slain will fall among you and then you will know that I am the Lord.
8 “‘But I will spare some of you. Some will escape the sword when you are scattered in foreign lands. 9 Then your survivors will remember me among the nations where they are exiled. They will realize how I was crushed by their unfaithful heart that turned from me and by their eyes that lusted after their idols. They will loathe themselves because of the evil they have done and because of all their abominable practices. 10 They will know that I am the Lord; my threats to bring this catastrophe on them were not empty.
11 “‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Clap your hands, stamp your feet, and say, “Ah!” because of all the evil, abominable practices of the house of Israel, for they will fall by the sword, famine, and pestilence. 12 The one far away will die by pestilence, the one close by will fall by the sword, and whoever is left and has escaped these will die by famine. I will fully vent my rage against them. 13 Then you will know that I am the Lord when their dead lie among their idols around their altars, on every high hill and on all the mountaintops, under every green tree and every leafy oak—the places where they have offered fragrant incense to all their idols. 14 I will stretch out my hand against them and make the land a desolate waste from the wilderness to Riblah, in all the places where they live. Then they will know that I am the Lord.’”
7:1 The Lord’s message came to me: 2 “You, son of man—this is what the Sovereign Lord says to the land of Israel: An end! The end is coming on the four corners of the land! 3 The end is now upon you, and I will release my anger against you. I will judge you according to your behavior; I will hold you accountable for all your abominable practices. 4 My eye will not pity you; I will not spare you. For I will hold you responsible for your behavior, and you will suffer the consequences of your abominable practices. Then you will know that I am the Lord!
5 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: A disaster—a one-of-a-kind disaster—is coming! 6 An end comes—the end comes! It has awakened against you! Look, it is coming! 7 Doom is coming upon you who live in the land! The time is coming, the day is near. There are sounds of tumult, not shouts of joy, on the mountains. 8 Soon now I will pour out my rage on you; I will fully vent my anger against you. I will judge you according to your behavior. I will hold you accountable for all your abominable practices. 9 My eye will not pity you; I will not spare you. For your behavior I will hold you accountable, and you will suffer the consequences of your abominable practices. Then you will know that it is I, the Lord, who is striking you.
10 “Look, the day! Look, it is coming! Doom has gone out! The staff has budded, pride has blossomed! 11 Violence has grown into a staff that supports wickedness. Not one of them will be left—not from their crowd, not from their wealth, not from their prominence. 12 The time has come; the day has struck! The customer should not rejoice, nor the seller mourn; for divine wrath comes against their whole crowd. 13 The customer will no longer pay the seller while both parties are alive, for the vision against their whole crowd will not be revoked. Each person, for his iniquity, will fail to preserve his life.
14 “They have blown the trumpet and everyone is ready, but no one goes to battle, because my anger is against their whole crowd. 15 The sword is outside; pestilence and famine are inside the house. Whoever is in the open field will die by the sword, and famine and pestilence will consume everyone in the city. 16 Their survivors will escape to the mountains and become like doves of the valleys; all of them will moan—each one for his iniquity. 17 All their hands will hang limp; their knees will be wet with urine. 18 They will wear sackcloth, terror will cover them; shame will be on all their faces, and all their heads will be shaved bald. 19 They will discard their silver in the streets, and their gold will be treated like filth. Their silver and gold will not be able to deliver them on the day of the Lord’s fury. They will not satisfy their hunger or fill their stomachs because their wealth was the obstacle leading to their iniquity. 20 They rendered the beauty of his ornaments into pride, and with it they made their abominable images—their detestable idols. Therefore I will render it filthy to them. 21 I will give it to foreigners as loot, to the world’s wicked ones as plunder, and they will desecrate it. 22 I will turn my face away from them, and they will desecrate my treasured place. Vandals will enter it and desecrate it. 23 (Make the chain, because the land is full of murder and the city is full of violence.) 24 I will bring the most wicked of the nations, and they will take possession of their houses. I will put an end to the arrogance of the strong, and their sanctuaries will be desecrated. 25 Terror is coming! They will seek peace, but find none. 26 Disaster after disaster will come, and one rumor after another. They will seek a vision from a prophet; priestly instruction will disappear, along with counsel from the elders. 27 The king will mourn and the prince will be clothed with shuddering; the hands of the people of the land will tremble. Based on their behavior I will deal with them, and by their standard of justice I will judge them. Then they will know that I am the Lord!”