Israel will no longer be a disgrace (Ezek 36:13-36:15)

“Thus says Yahweh God!

They say to you.

‘You devour people.

You bereave

Your nation of children.’

‘Therefore,

You shall no longer

Devour people.

You shall no longer

Bereave

Your nation of children.’

Says Yahweh God!

‘I will not let you

Hear any more

Of the insults

Of the nations.

You shall no longer

Bear the disgrace

Of the people.

You shall no longer

Cause your nation

To stumble.’

Says Yahweh God!”

Yahweh God, via Ezekiel, commented that people around Israel were saying that the Israelites devoured their own people and bereaved their own children. Perhaps, this was a reference to the human sacrifices at the fertility rites on the Israelite hill tops. However, Yahweh was insistent that this was going to stop. He did not want to hear any more insults from these various countries. Israel would no longer bear the disgrace of the many people around them. No one would cause their country to stumble.

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The reluctant returning children to an overcrowded land (Isa 49:19-49:21)

“Surely your waste land

Will now be too crowded

For your inhabitants.

Your desolate places

Will surely now be too crowded

For your inhabitants.

Your devastated land

Will surely now be too crowded

For your inhabitants.

Those who swallowed you up

Will be far away.

The children born

In the time of your bereavement

Will yet say in your hearing?

‘The place is too crowded for me.

Make room for me to settle.’

Then you will say in your heart.

‘Who has borne me these?

I was bereaved.

I was barren.

I was exiled.

I was put away.

So who has reared these?

I was left all alone.

Where then have these come from?’”

Second Isaiah raises the question about overcrowding if all the exiles returned. There would be a special problem for those born in exile that had never lived in Israel. Why would they want to return there? The land was wasted, desolate, and devastated, why would anyone want to live in overcrowded conditions there? Their captives were gone. However, what would entice those who had spent their entire life elsewhere to move to a place that they had never known. There was nothing there to attract them. In fact, the mothers were upset at their children. They had spent their life bereaved, barren, alone, and exiled in a far away land. Who had reared these kids? Where did they come from? Why didn’t they want to go back to Israel? Was the influence of this new country too much for their own children?