Ezekiel 17

Parable of Two Eagles and a Vine

17 Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Son of man, ask a riddle and present a parable to the house of Israel, [a]saying, ‘This is what the Lord [b]God says: “A great [c]eagle with great wings, long pinions, and a full plumage of many colors came to [d]Lebanon and took away the top of the [e]cedar. He broke off the [f]topmost of its young twigs and brought it to a land of merchants; he set it in a [g]city of traders. He also took [h]from the seed of the land and planted [i]it in [j]fertile soil, a [k]meadow beside abundant waters; he set it like a willow. Then it sprouted and became a low, spreading vine with its branches turned toward him, but its roots remained under it. So it became a vine and produced shoots and sent out branches.

“But there was [l]another great eagle with great wings and much plumage; and behold, this vine turned its roots toward him and sent out its branches toward him from the beds where it was planted, so that he might water it. It was planted in good [m]soil beside abundant waters, so that it would produce branches and bear fruit, and become a splendid vine.”’ Say, ‘This is what the Lord God says: “Will it thrive? Will he not pull up its roots and cut off its fruit, so that it withers—so that all its sprouting shoots wither? And neither by great [n]strength nor by many people can it be raised from its roots again. 10 Behold, though it is planted, will it thrive? Will it not completely wither as soon as the east wind strikes it—wither on the beds where it grew?”’”

Zedekiah’s Rebellion

11 Moreover, the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 12 “Say now to the rebellious house, ‘Do you not know what these things mean?’ Say, ‘Behold, the king of Babylon came to Jerusalem, took its king and leaders, and brought them to him in Babylon. 13 Then he took one of the royal [o]family and made a covenant with him, [p]putting him under oath. He also took away the mighty of the land, 14 so that the kingdom would be humbled, not exalting itself, but keeping his covenant so that it might continue. 15 But [q]he revolted against [r]him by sending his messengers to Egypt so that they might give him horses and many [s]troops. Will he succeed? Will he who does these things escape? Can he indeed break the covenant and escape? 16 As I live,’ declares the Lord God, ‘In the [t]country of the king who [u]put him on the throne, whose oath he despised and whose covenant he broke, [v]in Babylon he shall certainly die. 17 Pharaoh with his mighty army and great contingent will not [w]help him in the war, when they pile up assault ramps and build siege walls to eliminate many lives. 18 Now he despised the oath by breaking the covenant, and behold, he [x]pledged his allegiance, yet did all these things; he shall not escape.’” 19 Therefore, this is what the Lord God says: “As I live, My oath which he despised and My covenant which he broke, I will certainly [y]inflict on his head. 20 And I will spread My net over him, and he will be caught in My net. Then I will bring him to Babylon and enter into judgment with him there regarding the unfaithful act which he has committed against Me. 21 All the [z]choice men in all his troops will fall by the sword, and the survivors will be scattered to every wind; and you will know that I, the Lord, have spoken.”

22 This is what the Lord God says: “I will also take a sprig from the lofty top of the cedar and [aa]set it out; I will break off from the topmost of its young twigs a tender one, and I will plant it on a high and lofty mountain. 23 On the high mountain of Israel I will plant it, so that it may bring forth branches and bear fruit, and become a stately cedar. And [ab]birds of every [ac]kind will [ad]nest under it; they will [ae]nest in the shade of its branches. 24 All the trees of the field will know that I am the Lord; I bring down the high tree, exalt the low tree, dry up the green tree, and make the dry tree flourish. I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will perform it.”


  1. Ezekiel 17:3 Lit and you shall say
  2. Ezekiel 17:3 Heb YHWH, usually rendered Lord, and so throughout the ch
  3. Ezekiel 17:3 I.e., Nebuchadnezzar
  4. Ezekiel 17:3 I.e., Jerusalem
  5. Ezekiel 17:3 I.e., the line of David
  6. Ezekiel 17:4 I.e., King Jehoiachin and the leaders
  7. Ezekiel 17:4 I.e., Babylon
  8. Ezekiel 17:5 I.e., Zedekiah
  9. Ezekiel 17:5 I.e., Zedekiah
  10. Ezekiel 17:5 Lit a field of seed
  11. Ezekiel 17:5 Or plant
  12. Ezekiel 17:7 As in several ancient versions; MT one
  13. Ezekiel 17:8 Lit field
  14. Ezekiel 17:9 Lit arm
  15. Ezekiel 17:13 Lit seed
  16. Ezekiel 17:13 Lit and caused him to enter into an oath
  17. Ezekiel 17:15 I.e., Zedekiah
  18. Ezekiel 17:15 I.e., Nebuchadnezzar
  19. Ezekiel 17:15 Lit people
  20. Ezekiel 17:16 Lit place
  21. Ezekiel 17:16 Lit made him king
  22. Ezekiel 17:16 Lit with him in Babylon
  23. Ezekiel 17:17 Lit act with
  24. Ezekiel 17:18 Lit gave his hand
  25. Ezekiel 17:19 Lit give it
  26. Ezekiel 17:21 As in many mss and ancient versions; MT refugees
  27. Ezekiel 17:22 Lit give
  28. Ezekiel 17:23 Lit every bird
  29. Ezekiel 17:23 Lit wing
  30. Ezekiel 17:23 Lit dwell
  31. Ezekiel 17:23 Lit dwell