Ezekiel 37
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1  The hand of Hashem came upon me. He took me out by the spirit of Hashem and set me down in the valley. It was full of bones.

א  הָיְתָה עָלַי יַד־יְהוָה וַיּוֹצִאֵנִי בְרוּחַ יְהוָה וַיְנִיחֵנִי בְּתוֹךְ הַבִּקְעָה וְהִיא מְלֵאָה עֲצָמוֹת׃

2  He led me all around them; there were very many of them spread over the valley, and they were very dry.

ב  וְהֶעֱבִירַנִי עֲלֵיהֶם סָבִיב סָבִיב וְהִנֵּה רַבּוֹת מְאֹד עַל־פְּנֵי הַבִּקְעָה וְהִנֵּה יְבֵשׁוֹת מְאֹד׃

3  He said to me, “O mortal, can these bones live again?” I replied, “O Hashem, only You know.”

va-YO-mer ay-LAI ben a-DAM ha-tikh-YE-nah ha-a-tza-MOT ha-AY-leh va-o-MAR a-do-NAI e-lo-HEEM a-TAH ya-DA-ta

ג  וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי בֶּן־אָדָם הֲתִחְיֶינָה הָעֲצָמוֹת הָאֵלֶּה וָאֹמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה אַתָּה יָדָעְתָּ׃

37:3 ‘O mortal, can these bones live again?’

This chapter contains Yechezkel’s well-known vision of the valley where dry bones comie to life. There could be no greater metaphor for the restoration of the Jewish people to their land. Yisrael and Yehuda have been destroyed, the people scattered to the four corners of the earth. Just as no one could imagine that dead bones could live again, the exiles cannot imagine that they will survive as a nation, let alone ever return to their homeland. Yet, when God asks Yechezkel “can these bones live?” he doesn’t express doubt or hopelessness. He answers that anything can happen if it is God’s will. And so the dry bones arise from the dead. In a similarly miraculous fashion, in the years immediately following the Holocaust, the people of Israel have recently come back to life in the land of Israel.  In fact, these verses are read on Israeli radio every year on Holocaust Remembrance Day.Comment

4  And He said to me, “Prophesy over these bones and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of Hashem!

ד  וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי הִנָּבֵא עַל־הָעֲצָמוֹת הָאֵלֶּה וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵיהֶם הָעֲצָמוֹת הַיְבֵשׁוֹת שִׁמְעוּ דְּבַר־יְהוָה׃

5  Thus said Hashem to these bones: I will cause breath to enter you and you shall live again.

ה  כֹּה אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה לָעֲצָמוֹת הָאֵלֶּה הִנֵּה אֲנִי מֵבִיא בָכֶם רוּחַ וִחְיִיתֶם׃

6  I will lay sinews upon you, and cover you with flesh, and form skin over you. And I will put breath into you, and you shall live again. And you shall know that I am Hashem!”

ו  וְנָתַתִּי עֲלֵיכֶם גִּדִים וְהַעֲלֵתִי עֲלֵיכֶם בָּשָׂר וְקָרַמְתִּי עֲלֵיכֶם עוֹר וְנָתַתִּי בָכֶם רוּחַ וִחְיִיתֶם וִידַעְתֶּם כִּי־אֲנִי יְהוָה׃

7  I prophesied as I had been commanded. And while I was prophesying, suddenly there was a sound of rattling, and the bones came together, bone to matching bone.

ז  וְנִבֵּאתִי כַּאֲשֶׁר צֻוֵּיתִי וַיְהִי־קוֹל כְּהִנָּבְאִי וְהִנֵּה־רַעַשׁ וַתִּקְרְבוּ עֲצָמוֹת עֶצֶם אֶל־עַצְמוֹ׃

8  I looked, and there were sinews on them, and flesh had grown, and skin had formed over them; but there was no breath in them.

ח  וְרָאִיתִי וְהִנֵּה־עֲלֵיהֶם גִּדִים וּבָשָׂר עָלָה וַיִּקְרַם עֲלֵיהֶם עוֹר מִלְמָעְלָה וְרוּחַ אֵין בָּהֶם׃

9  Then He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, O mortal! Say to the breath: Thus said Hashem: Come, O breath, from the four winds, and breathe into these slain, that they may live again.”

ט  וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי הִנָּבֵא אֶל־הָרוּחַ הִנָּבֵא בֶן־אָדָם וְאָמַרְתָּ אֶל־הָרוּחַ כֹּה־אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה מֵאַרְבַּע רוּחוֹת בֹּאִי הָרוּחַ וּפְחִי בַּהֲרוּגִים הָאֵלֶּה וְיִחְיוּ׃

10  I prophesied as He commanded me. The breath entered them, and they came to life and stood up on their feet, a vast multitude.

י  וְהִנַּבֵּאתִי כַּאֲשֶׁר צִוָּנִי וַתָּבוֹא בָהֶם הָרוּחַ וַיִּחְיוּ וַיַּעַמְדוּ עַל־רַגְלֵיהֶם חַיִל גָּדוֹל מְאֹד־מְאֹד׃

11  And He said to me, “O mortal, these bones are the whole House of Yisrael. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up, our hope is gone; we are doomed.’

יא  וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי בֶּן־אָדָם הָעֲצָמוֹת הָאֵלֶּה כָּל־בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל הֵמָּה הִנֵּה אֹמְרִים יָבְשׁוּ עַצְמוֹתֵינוּ וְאָבְדָה תִקְוָתֵנוּ נִגְזַרְנוּ לָנוּ׃

12  Prophesy, therefore, and say to them: Thus said Hashem: I am going to open your graves and lift you out of the graves, O My people, and bring you to the land of Yisrael.

יב  לָכֵן הִנָּבֵא וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵיהֶם כֹּה־אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה הִנֵּה אֲנִי פֹתֵחַ אֶת־קִבְרוֹתֵיכֶם וְהַעֲלֵיתִי אֶתְכֶם מִקִּבְרוֹתֵיכֶם עַמִּי וְהֵבֵאתִי אֶתְכֶם אֶל־אַדְמַת יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

13  You shall know, O My people, that I am Hashem, when I have opened your graves and lifted you out of your graves.

יג  וִידַעְתֶּם כִּי־אֲנִי יְהוָה בְּפִתְחִי אֶת־קִבְרוֹתֵיכֶם וּבְהַעֲלוֹתִי אֶתְכֶם מִקִּבְרוֹתֵיכֶם עַמִּי׃

14  I will put My breath into you and you shall live again, and I will set you upon your own soil. Then you shall know that I Hashem have spoken and have acted”—declares Hashem.

יד  וְנָתַתִּי רוּחִי בָכֶם וִחְיִיתֶם וְהִנַּחְתִּי אֶתְכֶם עַל־אַדְמַתְכֶם וִידַעְתֶּם כִּי־אֲנִי יְהוָה דִּבַּרְתִּי וְעָשִׂיתִי נְאֻם־יְהוָה׃

15  The word of Hashem came to me:

טו  וַיְהִי דְבַר־יְהוָה אֵלַי לֵאמֹר׃

16  And you, O mortal, take a stick and write on it, “Of Yehuda and the Israelites associated with him”; and take another stick and write on it, “Of Yosef—the stick of Efraim—and all the House of Yisrael associated with him.”

טז  וְאַתָּה בֶן־אָדָם קַח־לְךָ עֵץ אֶחָד וּכְתֹב עָלָיו לִיהוּדָה וְלִבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל חברו [חֲבֵרָיו] וּלְקַח עֵץ אֶחָד וּכְתוֹב עָלָיו לְיוֹסֵף עֵץ אֶפְרַיִם וְכָל־בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל חברו [חֲבֵרָיו׃]

17  Bring them close to each other, so that they become one stick, joined together in your hand.

יז  וְקָרַב אֹתָם אֶחָד אֶל־אֶחָד לְךָ לְעֵץ אֶחָד וְהָיוּ לַאֲחָדִים בְּיָדֶךָ׃

18  And when any of your people ask you, “Won’t you tell us what these actions of yours mean?”

יח  וְכַאֲשֶׁר יֹאמְרוּ אֵלֶיךָ בְּנֵי עַמְּךָ לֵאמֹר הֲלוֹא־תַגִּיד לָנוּ מָה־אֵלֶּה לָּךְ׃

19  answer them, “Thus said Hashem: I am going to take the stick of Yosef—which is in the hand of Efraim—and of the tribes of Yisrael associated with him, and I will place the stick of Yehuda upon it and make them into one stick; they shall be joined in My hand.”

יט  דַּבֵּר אֲלֵהֶם כֹּה־אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה הִנֵּה אֲנִי לֹקֵחַ אֶת־עֵץ יוֹסֵף אֲשֶׁר בְּיַד־אֶפְרַיִם וְשִׁבְטֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל חברו [חֲבֵרָיו] וְנָתַתִּי אוֹתָם עָלָיו אֶת־עֵץ יְהוּדָה וַעֲשִׂיתִם לְעֵץ אֶחָד וְהָיוּ אֶחָד בְּיָדִי׃

37:19   They shall be joined in My hand

Yechezkel again prophesies about the ingathering of the exiles.  He stresses that this a promise for all of Israel; not only for the members of the kingdom of Yehuda, but also for the tribes from kingdom of Yisrael whose people have been considered lost since the Assyrian conquest of the northern kingdom.  During the final redemption, all twelve tribes of Israel will return to the Promised Land, and they will re-unite to form one nation unified under one leader.  Today, Jews are returning to Eretz Yisrael from all over the world, and are joining together to reestablish the nation of Israel in the land of Israel.Comment

20  You shall hold up before their eyes the sticks which you have inscribed,

כ  וְהָיוּ הָעֵצִים אֲ‍שֶׁר־תִּכְתֹּב עֲלֵיהֶם בְּיָדְךָ לְעֵינֵיהֶם׃

21  and you shall declare to them: Thus said Hashem: I am going to take B’nei Yisrael from among the nations they have gone to, and gather them from every quarter, and bring them to their own land.

כא  וְדַבֵּר אֲלֵיהֶם כֹּה־אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה הִנֵּה אֲנִי לֹקֵחַ אֶת־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל מִבֵּין הַגּוֹיִם אֲשֶׁר הָלְכוּ־שָׁם וְקִבַּצְתִּי אֹתָם מִסָּבִיב וְהֵבֵאתִי אוֹתָם אֶל־אַדְמָתָם׃

22  I will make them a single nation in the land, on the hills of Yisrael, and one king shall be king of them all. Never again shall they be two nations, and never again shall they be divided into two kingdoms.

כב  וְעָשִׂיתִי אֹתָם לְגוֹי אֶחָד בָּאָרֶץ בְּהָרֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וּמֶלֶךְ אֶחָד יִהְיֶה לְכֻלָּם לְמֶלֶךְ וְלֹא יהיה־[יִהְיוּ־] עוֹד לִשְׁנֵי גוֹיִם וְלֹא יֵחָצוּ עוֹד לִשְׁתֵּי מַמְלָכוֹת עוֹד׃

23  Nor shall they ever again defile themselves by their fetishes and their abhorrent things, and by their other transgressions. I will save them in all their settlements where they sinned, and I will cleanse them. Then they shall be My people, and I will be their God.

כג  וְלֹא יִטַמְּאוּ עוֹד בְּגִלּוּלֵיהֶם וּבְשִׁקּוּצֵיהֶם וּבְכֹל פִּשְׁעֵיהֶם וְהוֹשַׁעְתִּי אֹתָם מִכֹּל מוֹשְׁבֹתֵיהֶם אֲשֶׁר חָטְאוּ בָהֶם וְטִהַרְתִּי אוֹתָם וְהָיוּ־לִי לְעָם וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים׃

24  My servant David shall be king over them; there shall be one shepherd for all of them. They shall follow My rules and faithfully obey My laws.

כד  וְעַבְדִּי דָוִד מֶלֶךְ עֲלֵיהֶם וְרוֹעֶה אֶחָד יִהְיֶה לְכֻלָּם וּבְמִשְׁפָּטַי יֵלֵכוּ וְחֻקֹּתַי יִשְׁמְרוּ וְעָשׂוּ אוֹתָם׃

25  Thus they shall remain in the land which I gave to My servant Yaakov and in which your fathers dwelt; they and their children and their children’s children shall dwell there forever, with My servant David as their prince for all time.

כה  וְיָשְׁבוּ עַל־הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר נָתַתִּי לְעַבְדִּי לְיַעֲקֹב אֲשֶׁר יָשְׁבוּ־בָהּ אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם וְיָשְׁבוּ עָלֶיהָ הֵמָּה וּבְנֵיהֶם וּבְנֵי בְנֵיהֶם עַד־עוֹלָם וְדָוִד עַבְדִּי נָשִׂיא לָהֶם לְעוֹלָם׃

26  I will make a covenant of friendship with them—it shall be an everlasting covenant with them—I will establish them and multiply them, and I will place My Sanctuary among them forever.

כו  וְכָרַתִּי לָהֶם בְּרִית שָׁלוֹם בְּרִית עוֹלָם יִהְיֶה אוֹתָם וּנְתַתִּים וְהִרְבֵּיתִי אוֹתָם וְנָתַתִּי אֶת־מִקְדָּשִׁי בְּתוֹכָם לְעוֹלָם׃

27  My Presence shall rest over them; I will be their God and they shall be My people.

כז  וְהָיָה מִשְׁכָּנִי עֲלֵיהֶם וְהָיִיתִי לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים וְהֵמָּה יִהְיוּ־לִי לְעָם׃

28  And when My Sanctuary abides among them forever, the nations shall know that I Hashem do sanctify Yisrael.

 

כח  וְיָדְעוּ הַגּוֹיִם כִּי אֲנִי יְהוָה מְקַדֵּשׁ אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵל בִּהְיוֹת מִקְדָּשִׁי בְּתוֹכָם לְעוֹלָם׃

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Ezekiel 36
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Ezekiel 37

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