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Chapter 15

Translation and Transliteration of 

1The word of Hashem came to me:

vai-HI d'-var a-do-NAI e-LAI lay-MOR

אוַיְהִ֥י דְבַר־יְהֹוָ֖ה אֵלַ֥י לֵאמֹֽר׃

2O mortal, how is the wood of the grapevine better than the wood of any branch to be found among the trees of the forest?

ben-a-DAM mah-yi-HE-yeh ETZ-ha-GE-fen mi-KOL-ETZ ha-ZE-mo-RAH a-SHER ha-YAH ba-a-TZEI ha-YA-ar

בבֶּן־אָדָ֕ם מַה־יִּהְיֶ֥ה עֵץ־הַגֶּ֖פֶן מִכׇּל־עֵ֑ץ הַזְּמוֹרָ֕ה אֲשֶׁ֥ר הָיָ֖ה בַּעֲצֵ֥י הַיָּֽעַר׃

3Can wood be taken from it for use in any work? Can one take a peg from it to hang any vessel on?

ha-yu-KAKH mi-me-NU ETZ la-a-SOT li-m'-LA-khah, im yik-KHU mi-me-NU ya-TED lit-LOT a-LAV kol-KE-li

גהֲיֻקַּ֤ח מִמֶּ֙נּוּ֙ עֵ֔ץ לַעֲשׂ֖וֹת לִמְלָאכָ֑ה אִם־יִקְח֤וּ מִמֶּ֙נּוּ֙ יָתֵ֔ד לִתְל֥וֹת עָלָ֖יו כׇּל־כֶּֽלִי׃

4Now suppose it was thrown into the fire as fuel and the fire consumed its two ends and its middle was charred—is it good for any use?

hi-NEH la-ESH ni-TAN l'-o-KHA, et sh'-NAY k'-tzo-TAV o-KHA-lah ha-ESH v'-to-KHO na-KHAR, ha-yitz-LAKH l'-me-la-KHA

דהִנֵּ֥ה לָאֵ֖שׁ נִתַּ֣ן לְאׇכְלָ֑ה אֵת֩ שְׁנֵ֨י קְצוֹתָ֜יו אָכְלָ֤ה הָאֵשׁ֙ וְתוֹכ֣וֹ נָחָ֔ר הֲיִצְלַ֖ח לִמְלָאכָֽה׃

5Even when it was whole it could not be used for anything; how much less when fire has consumed it and it is charred! Can it still be used for anything?

hi-NEH bi-h'-yo-TO ta-MEEM lo yay-a-SEH li-m'-la-KHA, af KEE-aysh a-kha-la-t'-HU va-y'-KHAHR va-na-a-SEH od li-m'-la-KHA.

ההִנֵּה֙ בִּֽהְיוֹת֣וֹ תָמִ֔ים לֹ֥א יֵעָשֶׂ֖ה לִמְלָאכָ֑ה אַ֣ף כִּי־אֵ֤שׁ אֲכָלַ֙תְהוּ֙ וַיֵּחָ֔ר וְנַעֲשָׂ֥ה ע֖וֹד לִמְלָאכָֽה׃

6Assuredly, thus said Hashem: Like the wood of the grapevine among the trees of the forest, which I have designated to be fuel for fire, so will I treat the inhabitants of Yerushalayim.

la-KHAYN KOH a-MAR a-do-NAI e-lo-HEEM ka-a-SHER aytz ha-GE-fen b'-AYTZ ha-YA-ar a-sher n'-ta-TEEV la-AYSH l'-okh-LAH KAYN na-TA-tee et yo-sh'-VAY y'-ru-sha-LA-im

ולָכֵ֗ן כֹּ֤ה אָמַר֙ אֲדֹנָ֣י יֱהֹוִ֔ה כַּאֲשֶׁ֤ר עֵץ־הַגֶּ֙פֶן֙ בְּעֵ֣ץ הַיַּ֔עַר אֲשֶׁר־נְתַתִּ֥יו לָאֵ֖שׁ לְאׇכְלָ֑ה כֵּ֣ן נָתַ֔תִּי אֶת־יֹשְׁבֵ֖י יְרוּשָׁלָֽ͏ִם׃

 15:6 Like the wood of the grapevine among the trees of the forest

Grapes are one of the seven special agricultural products of Eretz Yisrael, and they can teach us a vital life lesson. Contemporary author Rabbi Natan Slifkin explains that grapes must be totally crushed, either underfoot or in a press, to produce valuable wine. He states, “The same is true of the righteous. The difficult question of how bad things can happen to good people is partially resolved through realizing that it is precisely through trials of suffering that latent potential is brought to fruition.” In this prophecy, Yechezkel promises that the inhabitants of Yerushalayim will be destroyed just as a vine that no longer produces grapes is burned for fuel. The message of the grape, however, is that the suffering and hardships are not intended merely as punishments. Rather, Hashem hopes that the pain and anguish will eventually bring out the best in them, and inspire their return to Him.

A vineyard near Beit Shemesh

A vineyard near Latrun.

7I will set My face against them; they escaped from fire, but fire shall consume them. When I set my face against them, you shall know that I am Hashem.

v'-na-ta-TEE et pa-NAY ba-HEM me-ha-ESH ya-TZA-u v'-ha-ESH to-KH'-lem vi-da-TEM kee a-NEE a-do-NAI b'-su-MEE et pa-NAY ba-HEM

זוְנָתַתִּ֤י אֶת־פָּנַי֙ בָּהֶ֔ם מֵהָאֵ֣שׁ יָצָ֔אוּ וְהָאֵ֖שׁ תֹּאכְלֵ֑ם וִֽידַעְתֶּם֙ כִּֽי־אֲנִ֣י יְהֹוָ֔ה בְּשׂוּמִ֥י אֶת־פָּנַ֖י בָּהֶֽם׃

8I will make the land a desolation, because they committed trespass—declares Hashem.

v'-na-ta-TEE et ha-A-retz sh'-ma-MAH, ya-AN ma-a-LU ma-A-al, n'-UM a-do-NAI a-do-NAI

חוְנָתַתִּ֥י אֶת־הָאָ֖רֶץ שְׁמָמָ֑ה יַ֚עַן מָ֣עֲלוּ מַ֔עַל נְאֻ֖ם אֲדֹנָ֥י יֱהֹוִֽה׃