The dry bones were the house of Israel (Ezek 37:11-37:11)

“Then Yahweh said to me!

‘Son of man!

These bones are

The whole house

Of Israel.

They say.

‘Our bones are

Dried up.

Our hope

Is lost.

We are cut off

Completely.’”

Yahweh told Ezekiel that the dry bones were the whole house of Israel that was discouraged in their exile in Babylon. These dejected captives said that their bones were dried up. They had lost hope, since they were completely cut off from Israel.

The destruction of the Ammonites (Ezek 25:6-25:7)

“Thus says Yahweh God.

‘You have clapped

Your hands.

You have stamped

Your feet.

You have rejoiced

With all the malice

Within you

Against the land of Israel.

Therefore,

I have stretched out

My hand

Against you.

I will hand you over

As plunder

To the nations.

I will cut you off

From the people.

I will make you

Perish

Out of the countries.

I will destroy you.

Then you will know

That I am Yahweh.’”

Yahweh, via Ezekiel, said that the Ammonites had maliciously clapped their hands and stamped their feet in rejoicing over the bad situation of Israel. Thus Yahweh was going to stretch out his hand against these Ammonites. He was going to make them plunder for the various nations, since they would be cut you off from all the other countries. They were going to perish because Yahweh was going to destroy them. Thus they would finally realize that Yahweh was God. Unlike Jeremiah, there was no mention of a future restoration for Ammon.

The attack of the angry lovers (Ezek 23:25-23:26)

“I will direct

My indignation

Against you.

Thus they may deal

With you

In fury.

They shall cut off

Your nose.

They shall cut off

Your ears.

Your survivors

Shall fall

By the sword.

They shall seize

Your sons.

They shall seize

Your daughters.

Your survivors

Shall be devoured

By fire.

They shall also strip you

Of your clothes.

They will take away

Your fine jewels.”

Yahweh was going to let his indignation against Jerusalem be dealt out by the angry former lovers of Jerusalem. They would deal with her in all their anger. They would cut off her nose and ears. Anyone that survived would be killed by the sword. They were going to seize her sons and daughters. Anyone who survived all this would be devoured by fire. Finally, they would strip Jerusalem of all her clothes and fine jewels. These angry former lovers would carry out Yahweh’s will.

The four scourges (Ezek 14:21-14:21)

“Thus says Yahweh God.

‘How much more

When I send

Upon Jerusalem

My four deadly acts

Of judgment,

Sword,

Famine,

Wild animals,

Pestilence,

To cut off

Humans

With animals

From it!’”

Yahweh said that he was going to send his 4 scourges or deadly acts of judgment upon Jerusalem. Added to the traditional 3 ways of Yahweh’s violent actions of sword, famine, and pestilence was the idea of wild animals. Once again, humans and animals would be cut off from the city of Jerusalem. However, it would be worse than most places.

A land sins (Ezek 14:12-14:13)

“The word of Yahweh

Came to me.

‘Son of man!

When a land sins

Against me,

by acting faithlessly,

I stretch out

My hand

Against it.

I break

Its staff of bread.

I send famine upon it.

I cut off

From it

Human beings

With animals.’”

The word of Yahweh came to Ezekiel, the son of man. Yahweh spoke about the sins of a faithless land. Yahweh would stretch out his hand against this country. He would break its bread supply. He would send a famine to that land. He would cut off all humans and animals from this country. This was the common view of the power of Yahweh.

 

Do not take the idols to heart! (Ezek 14:7-14:8)

“Any one of the house of Israel,

Or of the aliens

Who reside in Israel,

Who separate themselves

From me,

By taking their idols

Into their hearts,

Place their iniquity

As a stumbling block

Before them.

Yet they come

To a prophet

To inquire of me

By him.

I,

Yahweh,

Will answer them

Myself.

I will set my face

Against them.

I will make them

A sign,

A byword.

I will cut them off

From the midst

Of my people.

You shall know

That I am Yahweh.”

Yahweh repeated himself. He left no doubt about his feelings. Anyone from the house of Israel, or those foreigners living in Israel who followed the Israelite law, who separated themselves from Yahweh, would receive a direct response from Yahweh. Their iniquity or wickedness of putting idols before Yahweh would be a stumbling block in their relationship. Why had they come to see the prophet? Yahweh would speak directly with them. They would become a sign and a byword, as they would be separated from the Israelite community. They would be cast out and shunned, because they would be cut off from the other Israelites. They should soon realize that Yahweh was God, and no one else.

The moaning and mourning in Moab (Jer 48:36-48:37)

“Therefore my heart

Moans for Moab,

Like a flute.

My heart moans

Like a flute

For the people

Of Kir-heres.

The riches

That they had gained,

Has perished.

Every head

Is shaved.

Every beard

Is cut off.

On all the hands,

There are gashes.

On the loins,

There are sack cloths.”

Yahweh’s heart moans for Moab like a flute. The same is true of the people of Kir-heres, a major city in Moab, dedicated to the sun. All the richness that Moab had attained has now perished. Their heads are shaven and their beards are cut off. Their hands are all gashed, as they are also wearing sackcloth. These were all the signs of someone in mourning.