The gathering into one nation (Ezek 37:20-37:22)

“When the sticks

On which

You write

Are in your hand,

Before their eyes,

Then say to them.

Thus says Yahweh God!

‘I will take

The people of Israel

From the nations

Among which

They have gone.

I will gather them

From every quarter.

I will bring them

To their own land.

I will make them

One nation

In the land,

On the mountains of Israel.

One king

Shall be king

Over them all.

Never again

Shall there be

Two nations.

Never again

Shall they be divided

Into two kingdoms.’”

Yahweh told Ezekiel to gather the two written sticks in his hand before the people. Then he was to tell them what Yahweh had said. Yahweh was going to gather all the Israelites from the various places where they were living. He was going to bring them back to their own land. Yahweh was going to make them one nation in the mountainous land of Israel. They would have one king over them. Never again would there be two nations, divided into two kingdoms. There would be one nation and one kingdom with one king.

The new increasing flocks in Israel (Ezek 36:37-36:38)

“Thus says Yahweh God!

‘I will also

Let the house of Israel

Ask me

To do this

For them.

I will increase

Their population

Like a flock,

Like the flock

For sacrifices,

Like the flock

At Jerusalem

During her appointed festivals.

Thus,

Shall the ruined towns

Be filled

With flocks of people.

Then they shall know

That I am Yahweh.’”

Yahweh, via Ezekiel, compared the growth in humans in Israel to that of an ever-increasing flock of animals. He was going to increase the whole population of Israel. He would increase those showing up for sacrifices at the appointed religious festivals in Jerusalem. Those ruined towns would have more people just as the flock of animals and birds increases. Finally, they would all know that Yahweh was their God.

The new fertile land (Ezek 36:34-36:36)

“The land

That was desolate

Shall be tilled.

Instead of being

The desolation

That it was

In the sight of all

Who passed by.

Now they will say.

‘This land

That was desolate

Has become

Like the garden of Eden.

The wasted towns,

The desolate towns,

The ruined towns,

Are now inhabited.

They are fortified.’

‘Then the nations

That are left

All around you

Shall know

That I,

Yahweh,

Have rebuilt

The ruined places.

I have replanted

That which was desolate.

I,

Yahweh,

Have spoken.

I will do it.’”

Yahweh, via Ezekiel, said that the desolate land would be tilled. Everyone passing by would notice the difference. The former desolation would be gone. Now they will say that this land is like the Garden of Eden, as in Genesis, chapter 3. All those wasted, desolate, and ruined Israelite towns would be inhabited and fortified. All the nations and countries around Israel would know that Yahweh had rebuilt and replanted these various ruined and desolate places. What Yahweh had spoken about, he would actually do.

The new towns (Ezek 36:33-36:33)

“Thus says Yahweh God!

‘On the day

That I cleanse you

From all your iniquities,

I will cause

The towns

To be inhabited.

The wasted places

Shall be rebuilt.’”

As part of this rejuvenation of Israel, Yahweh, via Ezekiel, said that on the day that their iniquities were cleansed, the people would inhabit the Israelite towns again. All the ruined and wasted places would be rebuilt.

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.

Yahweh was going to deal with Edom (Ezek 35:11-35:13)

“Says Yahweh God!

‘Therefore,

As I live,

I will deal

With you

According to the anger,

According to the envy

That you showed

Because of your hatred

Against them.

I will make myself

Known among you,

When I judge you.

You shall know

That I,

Yahweh,

Have heard

All the abusive speech

That you uttered

Against the mountains

Of Israel.

Saying.

‘They are laid desolate.

They are given us

To devour.’

You magnified yourselves

Against me

With your mouth.

You multiplied

Your words

Against me.

I heard it.”

Yahweh God, via Ezekiel, said that he was going to deal with Edom, Mount Seir. The Edomites, with their anger and envy. had showed their hatred against Israel. Now Yahweh was going to judge the Edomites. They would soon learn who Yahweh was. He had heard all their abusive speech against the mountains of Israel. They had said that Israel was desolate and ready to be devoured. They magnified themselves against Yahweh with their mouths. They multiplied their words against Yahweh, but he had heard them.

 

Bloodshed will come to Mount Seir (Ezek 35:5-35:6)

“‘You cherished

An ancient enmity.

You gave over

The people of Israel

To the power

Of the sword,

At the time

Of their calamity,

At the time

Of their final punishment.’

Says Yahweh God!

‘Therefore,

As I live,

I will prepare you

For blood.

Blood shall

Pursue you.

You did not hate

Bloodshed.

Therefore,

Bloodshed

Shall pursue you.’”

Yahweh, via Ezekiel, noted that Edom or Mount Seir had been an ancient enemy with enmity towards Israel. Thus, they took advantage of the people of Israel at the time of their calamity, at their final punishment, by using the sword against them, helping the Babylonians. The response of Yahweh God was that he was going to prepare these Edomites for further bloodshed. As they did not hate bloodshed, it would pursue them further.