¶ AND the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
Son of man, put forth a riddle and speak a parable to the house of Israel,
And say, Thus says the LORD God: A great eagle with large wings and long pinions and fully developed claws, and thickly feathered, came to Lebanon and took the choicest branch of the cedar:
He cropped off the topmost of its tender twigs, and carried it to the land of Canaan;
and he set it in a city of merchants.
He took also of the seed of the land, and planted it in uncultivated land;
he placed it by many waters, and then set a watchman over it.
And it sprang up and grew into a spreading vine of low stature, so that its branches turned toward him and its roots were under him: so it became a vine, and brought forth branches and shot forth tendrils.
And, behold, there was also another great eagle with large wings and many claws: and, this vine bent its roots toward him, and shot forth its tendrils toward him, that he might water the soil where it was planted.
For it was planted in a good field, by many waters that it might bring forth branches and bear fruit and become a goodly vine.
Say now, Thus says the LORD God: It shall not prosper, but its roots shall be cut off, and its fruit shall dry up;
and all the foliage which it has put forth shall wither;
and it will not require a strong arm, nor many people to pluck it up by its roots.
Yea, behold, being planted, it shall not prosper;
when the east wind strikes it, it shall wither in the soil where it grew.
Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
Say now to the rebellious house, Do you know what these things mean?
Tell them, Behold, the king of Babylon is coming to Jerusalem, and he shall take the king and the princes thereof and carry them with him to Babylon;
And he shall take one of the offspring of the royal family, and make a covenant with him and take an oath of him;
and he shall carry away the rulers of the land, so that they may not boast again,
That the kingdom might be humbled, and that they might keep his covenant, and stand by him.
But he shall revolt against the king of Babylon, and shall send his ambassadors into Egypt, that they might give him horses and a large army.
But he who does such things shall not prosper, nor shall he be delivered.
As I live, says the LORD God, surely in the very place where dwells the king of Babylon, who made him king and he despised my oath and nullified my covenant, even in the midst of Babylon, he shall die.
Neither shall Pharaoh fight against him with a great army nor with many horses, but by casting up mounds and building forts shall he destroy many lives.
Because he has despised the oaths and nullified the covenant, he shall surrender, but he shall not be delivered, because he has done all these things.
Therefore thus says the LORD God: As I live, because he has despised my oaths and nullified my covenant, I will punish him for it.
And I will spread my net upon him, and he shall be taken in it, and I will bring him to Babylon, the land of the Chaldeans, and judge him there for his trespass that he has trespassed against me.
And all his noble men and all his friends shall fall by the sword, and those that remain shall be scattered to all the winds;
and you shall know that I the LORD have spoken it.
Thus says the LORD God: I will also take one of the choicest branches of the highest cedar, and I will clip it;
I will crop off from the top of its young twigs a tender one, and will plant it upon high and lofty mountains;
On the mountains of Israel will I plant it;
and it shall bring forth boughs and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar;
and under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing;
in the shadow of its branches shall they rest.
And all the trees of the field shall know that I the LORD have brought down the high tree, have exalted the low tree, have made dry the green tree, and have made the dry tree to flourish;
I the LORD have spoken and have done it.