Ezekiel 13

The Lord is against false prophets

1 Then the Lord gave this message to me: 2 ‘Son of man, speak my message to warn Israel's prophets. They are prophesying but they teach only their own ideas. Say to them, “Listen to this message from the Lord. 3 This is what the Almighty Lord says: Terrible trouble will come to those foolish prophets. They have not seen any vision from me but they tell people their own ideas. 4 People of Israel, your prophets have become like wild dogs that live among heaps of stones. 5 They have not helped you to mend the broken walls of your city. The walls will not be strong enough to keep Israel's people safe on the day of the Lord. That is when I will allow your enemies to attack you. 6 The visions that these prophets see are false. They tell lies about what will happen. They say, ‘The Lord says this,’ when I have not sent them with any message. But they still think that what they say will really happen. 7 Yes, you prophets have seen false visions. You tell lies when you say, ‘The Lord says this.’ You say that, but I have not spoken any message to you!

8 So this is what I, the Almighty Lord, say to them: I am now your enemy because of your lies. You deceive people when you tell them what will happen. Yes, I have become your enemy. That is what the Almighty Lord says.

9 I will punish the prophets who see false visions and who tell lies. They will not be among the leaders of my people. They will not be on the list of people who are true Israelites. They will not even return to the land of Israel. Then you will know that I am the Almighty Lord.

10 Those prophets have deceived my people. They say that there will be peace. But there is no peace for my people. They are like men who build a wall without any mortar. They paint it white to make it look nice. 11 So tell those prophets that their paint is useless. The wall will soon fall down. There will be a lot of rain, hail and strong winds that knock it down. 12 After the wall has fallen down, people will say, ‘That white paint was useless!’

13:10‘Mortar’ is like cement that is used to fix bricks together.

13 So this is what I, the Almighty Lord, say: Because I am angry with you, I will send strong winds to destroy your wall. I will send a lot of rain and hail. 14 I will break down your wall with its white paint. I will knock it down to the ground and leave only its foundation. It will fall on you and it will destroy you. Then you will know that I am the Lord. 15 I will show you that I am very angry. I will destroy the wall and the prophets who painted it white. Then I will say to you, ‘The wall is no longer there. The prophets who painted it are no longer alive. 16 They were prophets of Israel who told lies. They promised that Jerusalem would have peace. But there was really no peace.’ That is what the Almighty Lord says.”

13:15The wall shows what God will do to the city of Jerusalem. God will destroy it, as well as the false prophets.

17 Now, son of man, you must warn the women among your people who use their own ideas to prophesy. Tell them my message to warn them. 18 Say, “This is what the Almighty Lord says: Terrible trouble will come to those women who make pieces of cloth which they say have magic power. People tie them around their arms and their heads. Those women want to have power over people's lives. They think they can have power over other people's lives but they themselves will be safe. 19 You have made people give you a little bit of barley or bread to eat. That is how they pay you to insult my name! You tell lies to my people, and they listen to you! As a result, you cause people to die who do not deserve to die. And people who do not deserve to live continue to live.

20 So this is what the Almighty Lord says to those women: I hate your pieces of cloth. You use them to catch people in traps, like you catch birds. But I will pull those cloths off your arms. Then those people that you like to catch will become free. 21 I will pull the cloths off your heads. That will rescue my people from your power. You will no longer be able to catch them. Then you will know that I am the Lord. 22 You have used lies to make righteous people stop being strong. But I did not want to hurt those people. You have also helped wicked people to continue to do evil things. You did not want them to change and save their lives. 23 So you women will not see any more false visions. You will no longer pretend that you know future events. I will rescue my people from your power. Then you will know that I am the Lord.” ’