Chapter 5

1"Now you, son of man, take yourself a sharp sword, a cobbler's razor you shall take to yourself, and you shall pass it over your head and over your beard, and you shall take yourself a scale and divide them.   אוְאַתָּ֨ה בֶן־אָדָ֜ם קַח־לְךָ֣ | חֶ֣רֶב חַדָּ֗ה תַּ֚עַר הַגַּלָּבִים֙ תִּקָּחֶ֣נָּה לָּ֔ךְ וְהַֽעֲבַרְתָּ֥ עַל־רֹֽאשְׁךָ֖ וְעַל־זְקָנֶ֑ךָ וְלָֽקַחְתָּ֥ לְךָ֛ מֹאזְנֵ֥י מִשְׁקָ֖ל וְחִלַּקְתָּֽם:
a sharp sword: symbolizing the sword of Nebuchadnezzar.  
a cobbler’s razor: Heb. הַגַלָבִים, the cobblers. It is Greek, and some say that it is parcheminer in Old French, cobbler, saddler. However, Menachem (p. 56) defines תַעַר הַגַלָבִים as, the barber’s razor. No similar word exists in Scripture.  
2A third with fire shall you burn it in the midst of the city as the completion of the days of the siege; and you shall take a third and strike [it] with a sword all around it, and a third you shall scatter to the wind, and I shall unsheathe a sword after them.   בשְׁלִֹשִׁ֗ית בָּא֚וּר תַּבְעִיר֙ בְּת֣וֹךְ הָעִ֔יר כִּמְלֹ֖את יְמֵ֣י הַמָּצ֑וֹר וְלָֽקַחְתָּ֣ אֶת־הַשְּׁלִשִׁ֗ית תַּכֶּ֚ה בַחֶ֙רֶב֙ סְבִ֣יבוֹתֶ֔יהָ וְהַשְּׁלִשִׁית֙ תִּזְרֶ֣ה לָר֔וּחַ וְחֶ֖רֶב אָרִ֥יק אַֽחֲרֵיהֶֽם:
in the midst of the city: that you inscribed on the brick, as the completion of the days of the siege. This is a sign that a third of them will perish in the heat of hunger in its midst, which is like fire, in the same way that it says (Lam. 5: 10): “Our skin is parched as by a furnace because of the heat of hunger.”  
and strike: it.  
with a sword all around it: Around that brick, symbolizing those who flee from the city, whom the Chaldeans will overtake and slay in the environs of Jerusalem.  
and a third you shall scatter to the wind: symbolizing the exiles who will go to Egypt, viz. Johanan son of Kareach and his associates, and there I shall unsheathe a sword [in pursuit] after them, for Nebuchadnezzar went and destroyed Egypt, and there they were slain.  
3And you shall take from there a few by number, and you shall bind them in your skirts.   גוְלָקַחְתָּ֥ מִשָּׁ֖ם מְעַ֣ט בְּמִסְפָּ֑ר וְצַרְתָּ֥ אוֹתָ֖ם בִּכְנָפֶֽיךָ:
and you shall bind them in your skirts: These are the few people who will be exiled to Babylon and will live.  
[and you shall bind them: From here is an allusion [to the fact] that whoever cuts his hair should not cast it away, but should hide it, for any act written in these verses has implications of evil.]  
4And you shall take more of them, and you shall cast them into the midst of the fire and burn them with fire; therefrom a fire will emerge to all the house of Israel."   דוּמֵהֶם֙ ע֣וֹד תִּקָּ֔ח וְהִשְׁלַכְתָּ֚ אוֹתָם֙ אֶל־תּ֣וֹךְ הָאֵ֔שׁ וְשָֽׂרַפְתָּ֥ אֹתָ֖ם בָּאֵ֑שׁ מִמֶּ֥נּוּ תֵֽצֵא־אֵ֖שׁ אֶל־כָּל־בֵּ֥ית יִשְׂרָאֵֽל:
And you shall take more of them: From those few people.  
and burn them with fire: This represents Ahab son of Kolaiah and Zedekiah son of Maaseiah, whom the king of Babylon burnt with fire (Jer.29:21f.).  
therefrom a fire will emerge: From these allusions that I give you, retribution will emerge to all the house of Israel.  
5So said the Lord God: This is Jerusalem; in the midst of the nations I have placed it, and around it are lands.   הכֹּ֚ה אָמַר֙ אֲדֹנָ֣י יֱהֹוִ֔ה זֹאת יְר֣וּשָׁלִַ֔ם בְּת֥וֹךְ הַגּוֹיִ֖ם שַׂמְתִּ֑יהָ וּסְבִֽיבוֹתֶ֖יהָ אֲרָצֽוֹת:
among the nations I have placed it: In the middle of the world.  
6But she exchanged My judgments for wickedness more than the nations, and My statutes, more than the lands that are around her, for they rejected My judgments, and as for My statutes, more than the lands that are around her, for they loathed My judgments, and as for My statutes-they did not follow them.   ווַתֶּ֨מֶר אֶת־מִשְׁפָּטַ֚י לְרִשְׁעָה֙ מִן־הַגּוֹיִ֔ם וְאֶ֨ת־חֻקּוֹתַ֔י מִן־הָֽאֲרָצ֖וֹת אֲשֶׁ֣ר סְבִֽיבוֹתֶ֑יהָ כִּ֚י בְמִשְׁפָּטַי֙ מָאָ֔סוּ וְחֻקּוֹתַ֖י לֹא־הָֽלְכ֥וּ בָהֶֽם:
But she exchanged My judgments: Heb. וַתֶּמֶר, she exchanged My judgments.  
more than the nations: For so it is written concerning Manasseh (II Chron. 33:9): “And Manasseh misled Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to do evil more than the nations that the Lord had destroyed from before the children of Israel.” Some interpret this to mean that the nations did not accept His Torah, but they [Israel] did accept it upon themselves, and transgressed it.  
7Therefore, so said the Lord God: Because you have prepared yourselves [to go astray] more than the nations that are around you; you did not follow My statutes and you did not perform My judgments; and like the customs of the nations that were around you, you did not do.   זלָכֵ֞ן כֹּֽה־אָמַ֣ר | אֲדֹנָ֣י יֱהֹוִ֗ה יַ֚עַן הֲמָנְכֶם֙ מִן־הַגּוֹיִם֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר סְבִיבֽוֹתֵיכֶ֔ם בְּחֻקּוֹתַי֙ לֹ֣א הֲלַֽכְתֶּ֔ם וְאֶת־מִשְׁפָּטַ֖י לֹ֣א עֲשִׂיתֶ֑ם וּכְמִשְׁפְּטֵ֧י הַגּוֹיִ֛ם אֲשֶׁ֥ר סְבִיבֽוֹתֵיכֶ֖ם לֹ֥א עֲשִׂיתֶֽם:
Because you have prepared yourselves: Because you have prepared yourselves to be more profligate than the nations. [The word] הֲמָנְכֶם is an expression of (Dan 1:5): “And the king allotted (וַיְמַן) [food] for them.” Menachem, though, interpreted it as an expression of stirring, like (Ps. 46:7): “Nations have stirred (הָמוּ).”  
and like the customs of the nations that were around you, you did not do: For they did not exchange their gods, although they are not gods, but you exchanged My glory for something that avails not. Our Sages (Sanh. 39b) explained: You did not do as the virtuous ones among them, you did as the corrupt ones among them.  
8Therefore, so said the Lord God: Behold, I too am upon you, and I shall execute judgments in your midst before the eyes of the nations.   חלָכֵ֗ן כֹּ֚ה אָמַר֙ אֲדֹנָ֣י יֱהֹוִ֔ה הִֽנְנִ֥י עָלַ֖יִךְ גַּם־אָ֑נִי וְעָשִׂ֧יתִי בְתוֹכֵ֛ךְ מִשְׁפָּטִ֖ים לְעֵינֵ֥י הַגּוֹיִֽם:
I too: You betrayed Me, and I too, behold I am upon you.  
9And I shall do in you what I have not done and what I shall never do again, because of your abominations.   טוְעָשִׂ֣יתִי בָ֗ךְ אֵת אֲשֶׁ֣ר לֹֽא־עָשִׂ֔יתִי וְאֵ֛ת אֲשֶֽׁר־לֹֽא־אֶֽעֱשֶׂ֥ה כָמ֖וֹהוּ ע֑וֹד יַ֖עַן כָּל־תּֽוֹעֲבֹתָֽיִךְ:
10Thus fathers will eat children in your midst, and children will eat their fathers, and I shall execute judgments upon you, and I shall scatter your remnant to every direction.   ילָכֵ֗ן אָב֞וֹת יֹֽאכְל֚וּ בָנִים֙ בְּתוֹכֵ֔ךְ וּבָנִ֖ים יֹֽאכְל֣וּ אֲבוֹתָ֑ם וְעָשִׂ֚יתִי בָךְ֙ שְׁפָטִ֔ים וְזֵֽרִיתִ֥י אֶת־כָּל־שְׁאֵֽרִיתֵ֖ךְ לְכָל־רֽוּחַ:
11Therefore, as I live, says the Lord God, I swear! because you have contaminated My sanctuary with all your detestable things and with all your abominations; I, too, shall diminish you and My eye will not spare you, and I, too, shall have no pity.   יאלָכֵ֣ן חַי־אָ֗נִי נְאֻם֘ אֲדֹנָ֣י יֱהֹוִה֒ אִם־לֹ֗א יַעַן אֶת־מִקְדָּשִׁ֣י טִמֵּ֔את בְּכָל־שִׁקּוּצַ֖יִךְ וּבְכָל־תּֽוֹעֲבֹתָ֑יִךְ וְגַם־אֲנִ֚י אֶגְרַע֙ וְלֹא־תָח֣וֹס עֵינִ֔י וְגַם־אֲנִ֖י לֹ֥א אֶחְמֽוֹל:
12A third of you will die through pestilence, and through hunger they will perish in your midst, and a third will fall around you by the sword, and a third I shall scatter to every direction, and I shall unsheathe a sword [in pursuit] after them.   יבשְׁלִֽשִׁתֵ֞יךְ בַּדֶּ֣בֶר יָמ֗וּתוּ וּבָֽרָעָב֙ יִכְל֣וּ בְתוֹכֵ֔ךְ וְהַ֨שְּׁלִשִׁ֔ית בַּחֶ֖רֶב יִפְּל֣וּ סְבִֽיבוֹתָ֑יִךְ וְהַשְּׁלִשִׁית֙ לְכָל־ר֣וּחַ אֱזָרֵ֔ה וְחֶ֖רֶב אָרִ֥יק אַֽחֲרֵיהֶֽם:
13And My wrath will be spent and I shall cause My fury against them to subside, and I shall be comforted, and they will know that I, the Lord, have spoken with My zeal, when I spend My fury upon them.   יגוְכָלָ֣ה אַפִּ֗י וַֽהֲנִֽחֹתִ֧י חֲמָתִ֛י בָּ֖ם וְהִנֶּחָ֑מְתִּי וְיָֽדְע֞וּ כִּי־אֲנִ֣י יְהֹוָ֗ה דִּבַּ֙רְתִּי֙ בְּקִנְאָתִ֔י בְּכַלּוֹתִ֥י חֲמָתִ֖י בָּֽם:
and I shall cause My fury against them to subside: When I avenge Myself against them, My fury will subside, and My spirit will not oppress Me.  
and I shall be comforted: Heb. וְהִנֶחָמְתִּי. And I shall be comforted from the pain that you inflicted upon Me.  
14And I shall make you a ruin and a reproach among the nations around you; before the eyes of every passerby.   ידוְאֶתְּנֵךְ֙ לְחָרְבָּ֣ה וּלְחֶרְפָּ֔ה בַּגּוֹיִ֖ם אֲשֶׁ֣ר סְבִֽיבוֹתָ֑יִךְ לְעֵינֵ֖י כָּל־עוֹבֵֽר:
a ruin: Heb. לְחָרְבָּה, destroyer in Old French, to make desolate, destroy.  
15And she will be a reproach and a taunt, a chastisement, and an astonishment to the nations that are around you, when I execute in you judgments with wrath and with fury and with chastisements of fury-I, the Lord, have spoken.   טווְֽהָ֨יְתָ֜ה חֶרְפָּ֚ה וּגְדוּפָה֙ מוּסָ֣ר וּמְשַׁמָּ֔ה לַגּוֹיִ֖ם אֲשֶׁ֣ר סְבִֽיבוֹתָ֑יִךְ בַּֽעֲשׂוֹתִי֩ בָ֨ךְ שְׁפָטִ֜ים בְּאַ֚ף וּבְחֵמָה֙ וּבְתֹֽכְח֣וֹת חֵמָ֔ה אֲנִ֥י יְהֹוָ֖ה דִּבַּֽרְתִּי:
and a taunt: A disgrace.  
a chastisement: Heb. מוּסָר torments.  
and an astonishment: A wonder.  
16When I send forth the evil arrows of the famine in them, which became a destroyer, which I shall send forth to destroy you; and I shall add a famine upon you and break your staff of bread.   טזבְּֽשַׁלְּחִ֡י אֶת־חִצֵּי֩ הָֽרָעָ֨ב הָֽרָעִ֚ים בָּהֶם֙ אֲשֶׁר הָי֣וּ לְמַשְׁחִ֔ית אֲשֶֽׁר־אֲשַׁלַּ֥ח אוֹתָ֖ם לְשַֽׁחֶתְכֶ֑ם וְרָעָב֙ אֹסֵ֣ף עֲלֵיכֶ֔ם וְשָֽׁבַרְתִּ֥י לָכֶ֖ם מַטֵּה־לָֽחֶם:
and I shall add a famine upon you: This is the famine of the penny depleted from the pocket. So I heard.  
your staff of bread: Support of bread.  
17And I shall send forth upon you famine and wild beasts, and they will bereave you; and pestilence and blood shed will pass through you, and I shall bring the sword upon you. I, the Lord, have spoken.   יזוְשִׁלַּחְתִּ֣י עֲ֠לֵיכֶם רָעָ֞ב וְחַיָּ֚ה רָעָה֙ וְשִׁכְּלֻ֔ךְ וְדֶ֥בֶר וָדָ֖ם יַֽעֲבָר־בָּ֑ךְ וְחֶ֙רֶב֙ אָבִ֣יא עָלַ֔יִךְ אֲנִ֥י יְהֹוָ֖ה דִבַּֽרְתִּי: