Ezekiel 29
Contemporary English Version

Judgment on the King of Egypt

1 Ten years after King Jehoiachin and the rest of us had been led away as prisoners to Babylonia, the Lord spoke to me on the twelfth day of the tenth month.+ He said:

2Ezekiel, son of man, condemn the king of Egypt. Tell him and his people 3that I am saying:

King of Egypt, you were like a giant crocodile lying in a river. You acted as though you owned the Nile and made it for yourself. But now I, the Lord God, am your enemy! 4I will put a hook in your jaw and pull you out of the water, and all the fish in your river will stick to your scaly body.+ 5I'll throw you and the fish into the desert, and your body will fall on the hard ground. You will be left unburied,+ and wild animals and birds will eat your flesh. 6 Then everyone in Egypt will know that I am the Lord.

You and your nation refused to help the people of Israel and were nothing more than a broken stick. 7When they reached out to you for support, you broke in half, cutting their arms and making them fall.+

8So I, the Lord God, will send troops to attack you, king of Egypt. They will kill your people and livestock, 9until your land is a barren desert. Then you will know that I have done these things.

You claimed that you made the Nile River and control it. 10Now I am turning against you and your river. Your nation will be nothing but an empty wasteland all the way from the town of Migdol in the north to Aswan in the south, and as far as the border of Ethiopia.+ 11No human or animal will even dare travel through Egypt, because no sign of life will be found there for 40 years. 12It will be the most barren place on earth. Every city in Egypt will lie in ruins during those 40 years, and I will scatter your people throughout the nations of the world.

13Then after those 40 years have passed, I will bring your people back from the places where I scattered them. 14They will once again live in their homeland in southern Egypt. But they will be a weak kingdom 15and won't ever be strong enough to rule nations, as they did in the past. 16My own people Israel will never again depend on your nation. In fact, when the Israelites remember what happened to you Egyptians, they will realize how wrong they were to turn to you for help. Then the Israelites will know that I, the Lord God, did these things.

King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia Will Conquer Egypt

17Twenty-seven years after King Jehoiachin and the rest of us had been led away as prisoners to Babylonia, the Lord spoke to me on the first day of the first month.+ He said:

18King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia has attacked the city of Tyre. He forced his soldiers to carry so many heavy loads that their heads were rubbed bald, and their shoulders were red and sore. Nebuchadnezzar and his army still could not capture the city. 19So now I will hand over the nation of Egypt to him. He will take Egypt's valuable treasures and give them to his own troops. 20Egypt will be his reward, because he and his army have been following my orders. I, the Lord God, have spoken.

21Ezekiel, when Egypt is defeated, I will make the people of Israel strong, and I will give you the power to speak to them. Then they will know that I, the Lord, have done these things.


29.1 Ten years … tenth month: Probably January of 587 b.c.
29.4 all the fish in your river will stick to your scaly body: All the king's officials will be removed from power and destroyed along with the king himself.
29.5 You will be left unburied: A proper burial in a royal tomb was extremely important to Egyptian kings, because they often thought of themselves as gods.
29.7 making them fall: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
29.10 Ethiopia: The Hebrew text has “Cush,” which was a region south of Egypt that included parts of the present countries of Ethiopia and Sudan.
29.17 Twenty-seven … first month: Probably March of 571 b.c.

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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