371I felt the powerful presence of the LORD, and his Spirit took me and set me down in a valley where the ground was covered with bones. 2He led me all round the valley, and I could see that there were very many bones and that they were very dry. 3He said to me, “Mortal man, can these bones come back to life?”
I replied, “Sovereign LORD, only you can answer that!”
4He said, “Prophesy to the bones. Tell these dry bones to listen to the word of the LORD. 5Tell them that I, the Sovereign LORD, am saying to them: I am going to put breath into you and bring you back to life. 6I will give you sinews and muscles, and cover you with skin. I will put breath into you and bring you back to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD.”
7So I prophesied as I had been told. While I was speaking, I heard a rattling noise, and the bones began to join together. 8While I watched, the bones were covered with sinews and muscles, and then with skin. But there was no breath in the bodies.
9God said to me, “Mortal man, prophesy to the wind.37.9 wind; or spirit. The same Hebrew word may mean wind, or spirit, or breath. Tell the wind that the Sovereign LORD commands it to come from every direction, to breathe into these dead bodies, and to bring them back to life.”
So I prophesied as I had been told. Breath entered the bodies, and they came to life and stood up. There were enough of them to form an army.
11God said to me, “Mortal man, the people of Israel are like these bones. They say that they are dried up, without any hope and with no future. 12So prophesy to my people Israel and tell them that I, the Sovereign LORD, am going to open their graves. I am going to take them out and bring them back to the land of Israel. 13When I open the graves where my people are buried and bring them out, they will know that I am the LORD. 14I will put my breath in them, bring them back to life, and let them live in their own land. Then they will know that I am the LORD. I have promised that I would do this — and I will. I, the LORD, have spoken.”
15The LORD spoke to me again.
16“Mortal man,” he said, “take a wooden stick and write on it the words, ‘The kingdom of Judah’. Then take another stick and write on it the words, ‘The kingdom of Israel’. 17Then hold the two sticks end to end in your hand so that they look like one stick. 18When your people ask you to tell them what this means, 19tell them that I, the Sovereign LORD, am going to take the stick representing Israel and put it with the one that represents Judah. Out of the two I will make one stick and hold it in my hand.
20“Hold in your hand the two sticks and let the people see them. 21Then tell them that I, the Sovereign LORD, am going to take all my people out of the nations where they have gone, gather them together, and bring them back to their own land. 22I will unite them into one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel. They will have one king to rule over them, and they will no longer be divided into two nations or split into two kingdoms. 23They will not defile themselves with disgusting idols any more or corrupt themselves with sin. I will free them from all the ways in which they sin and betray me. I will purify them; they will be my people, and I will be their God. 24
A king like my servant David will be their king. They will all be united under one ruler and will obey my laws faithfully. 25They will live on the land I gave to my servant Jacob, the land where their ancestors lived. They will live there for ever, and so will their children and all their descendants. A king like my servant David will rule over them for ever. 26I will make a covenant with them that guarantees their security for ever. I will establish them and increase their population, and put my Temple in their land, where it will stay for ever. 27
I will live there with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people. 28When I place my Temple there to be among them for ever, then the nations will know that I, the LORD, have chosen Israel to be my own people.”
381The LORD spoke to me. 2
“Mortal man,” he said, “denounce Gog, chief ruler of the nations of Meshech and Tubal in the land of Magog. Denounce him, 3and tell him that I, the Sovereign LORD, am his enemy. 4I will turn him round, put hooks in his jaws, and drag him and all his troops away. His army, with its horses and uniformed riders, is enormous, and every soldier carries a shield and is armed with a sword. 5Men from Persia, Ethiopia38.5 Ethiopia: See Word List., and Libya are with him, and all have shields and helmets. 6All the fighting men of the lands of Gomer and Beth Togarmah in the north are with him, and so are men from many other nations. 7Tell him to get ready and have all his troops ready at his command. 8After many years I will order him to invade a country where the people were brought back together from many nations and have lived without fear of war. He will invade the mountains of Israel, which were desolate and deserted so long, but where all the people now live in safety. 9He and his army and the many nations with him will attack like a storm and cover the land like a cloud.”
10This is what the Sovereign LORD says to Gog: “When that time comes, you will start thinking up an evil plan. 11You will decide to invade a helpless country where the people live in peace and security in unwalled towns that have no defences. 12You will plunder and loot the people who live in cities that were once in ruins. They have been gathered from the nations, and now they have livestock and property and live at the crossroads of the world. 13The people of Sheba and Dedan and the merchants from the towns of Spain will ask you, ‘Have you assembled your army and attacked in order to loot and plunder? Do you intend to get silver and gold, livestock and property, and to march off with all those spoils?’ ”
14So the Sovereign LORD sent me to tell Gog what he was saying to him: “Now while my people Israel live in security, you will set out38.14 One ancient translation set out; Hebrew know. 15from your place in the far north, leading a large, powerful army of soldiers from many nations, all of them on horseback. 16You will attack my people Israel like a storm moving across the land. When the time comes, I will send you to invade my land in order to show the nations who I am, to show my holiness by what I do through you. 17You are the one I was talking about long ago, when I announced through my servants, the prophets of Israel, that in days to come I would bring someone to attack Israel.” The Sovereign LORD has spoken.
18The Sovereign LORD says, “On the day when Gog invades Israel, I will be furious. 19I declare in the heat of my anger that on that day there will be a severe earthquake in the land of Israel. 20Every fish and bird, every animal large and small, and every human being on the face of the earth will tremble for fear of me. Mountains will fall, cliffs will crumble, and every wall will collapse. 21I will terrify Gog with all sorts of calamities.38.21 One ancient translation terrify… calamities; Hebrew unclear. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken. His men will turn their swords against one another. 22I will punish him with disease and bloodshed. Torrents of rain and hail, together with fire and sulphur, will pour down on him and his army and on the many nations that are on his side. 23In this way I will show all the nations that I am great and that I am holy. They will know then that I am the LORD.”
391The Sovereign LORD said, “Mortal man, denounce Gog, the chief ruler of the nations of Meshech and Tubal, and tell him that I am his enemy. 2I will turn him in a new direction and lead him out of the far north until he comes to the mountains of Israel. 3Then I will knock his bow out of his left hand and his arrows out of his right hand. 4Gog and his army and his allies will fall dead on the mountains of Israel, and I will let their bodies be food for all the birds and wild animals. 5They will fall dead in the open field. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken. 6I will start a fire in the land of Magog and along all the coasts where people live undisturbed, and everyone will know that I am the LORD. 7I will make sure that my people Israel know my holy name, and I will not let my name be disgraced any more. Then the nations will know that I, the LORD, am the Holy God of Israel.”
8The Sovereign LORD said, “The day I spoke about is certain to come. 9The people who live in the cities of Israel will go out and collect the abandoned weapons for firewood. They will build fires with the shields, bows, arrows, spears, and clubs, and will have enough to last for seven years. 10They will not have to gather firewood in the fields or cut down trees in the forest, because they will have the abandoned weapons to burn. They will loot and plunder those who looted and plundered them.” The Sovereign LORD has spoken.
11The LORD said, “When all this happens, I will give Gog a burial ground there in Israel, in Travellers' Valley, east of the Dead Sea.39.11 Hebrew has four additional words, the meaning of which is unclear. Gog and all his army will be buried there, and the valley will be called ‘The Valley of Gog's Army’. 12It will take the Israelites seven months to bury all the corpses and make the land clean again. 13Everyone in the land will help to bury them, and they will be honoured for this on the day of my victory. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken. 14After the seven months are over, men will be chosen to travel through the land in order to find and bury those bodies39.14 Some ancient translations those bodies; Hebrew the travellers. remaining on the ground, so that they can make the land clean. 15As they go up and down the country, every time they find a human bone, they will put a marker beside it so that the grave diggers can come and bury it in the Valley of Gog's Army. 16(There will be a town near by named after the army.) And so the land will be made clean again.”
The Sovereign LORD said to me, “Mortal man, call all the birds and animals to come from all round to eat the sacrifice I am preparing for them. It will be a huge feast on the mountains of Israel, where they can eat meat and drink blood. 18They are to eat the bodies of soldiers and drink the blood of the rulers of the earth, all of whom will be killed like rams or lambs or goats or fat bulls. 19When I kill these people like sacrifices, the birds and animals are to eat all the fat they can hold and to drink blood until they are drunk. 20At my table they will eat all they can hold of horses and their riders and of soldiers and fighting men. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken.”
21The LORD said, “I will let the nations see my glory and show them how I use my power to carry out my just decisions. 22The Israelites will know from then on that I am the LORD their God. 23And the nations will know that the Israelites went into exile because of the sins which they committed against me. I turned away from them and let their enemies defeat them and kill them in battle. 24I gave them what they deserved for their uncleanness and their wickedness, and I turned away from them.”
25The Sovereign LORD said, “But now I will be merciful to Jacob's descendants, the people of Israel, and make them prosperous again. I will protect my holy name. 26When they are once more living in safety in their own land, with no one to threaten them, they will be able to forget how they were disgraced for having betrayed me. 27In order to show the many nations that I am holy, I will bring my people back from all the countries where their enemies live. 28Then my people will know that I am the LORD their God. They will know this, because I sent them into captivity and now gather them and bring them back into their own land, not leaving even one of them behind. 29I will pour out my spirit on the people of Israel and never again turn away from them. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken.”