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A Cedar Tree

31 It happened in the eleventh year of our captivity, in the third month. It was on the first day of the month. The Lord spoke his word to me. He said: “Human being, say to the king of Egypt and his people:

‘No one was like you in your greatness.
Assyria was once like a cedar tree in Lebanon.
    It had beautiful branches that shaded the forest.
It was very tall.
    Its top was among the clouds.
Much water made the tree grow.
    The deep springs of water made the tree tall.
Rivers flowed
    around the bottom of the tree.
They sent their streams
    to all other trees of the field.
So the tree was taller
    than all the other trees of the field.
Its branches became long and big
    because of so much water.
All the birds of the sky
    made their nests in the tree’s branches.
And all the wild animals
    gave birth under the tree’s branches.
All great nations
    lived in the tree’s shade.
So the tree was great and beautiful,
    with its long branches.
    Its roots reached down to many waters.
The cedar trees in the garden of God
    were not as great as it was.
The pine trees
    did not have such great branches.
The plane trees
    did not have such branches.
No tree in the garden of God
    was as beautiful as this tree.
I made it beautiful
    with many branches.
And all the trees of Eden in the garden of God
    wanted to be like it.

10 “‘So this is what the Lord God says: The tree has grown tall. Its top has reached the clouds. And it has become proud of its height. 11 So I have let a mighty ruler of the nations take care of the tree. The ruler will surely punish the tree. Because it is evil I will get rid of it. 12 The cruelest foreign nation cut it down and left it. The tree’s branches fell on the mountains and in all the valleys. Its broken branches were in all the ravines of the land. All the nations of the earth left the shade of that tree. 13 The birds of the sky live on the fallen tree. The wild animals live among the tree’s fallen branches. 14 Then the trees that grow by the water will not be proud to be tall. They will not put their tops among the clouds. None of the trees that are watered well will grow that tall. They all are meant to die and go under the ground. They will be with those who have died and have gone down to where the dead are.

15 “‘This is what the Lord God says: On the day when the tree went down to where the dead are, I made people cry loudly. I covered the deep springs and held back their rivers. And the great waters stopped flowing. I made Lebanon cry loudly for the great tree. All the trees of the field dried up and died. 16 I made the nations shake with fear at the sound of the tree falling. I brought the tree down to where the dead are. It went with those who go down to the grave. Then trees of Eden and the best trees of Lebanon were comforted. All the well-watered trees were comforted in the earth below. 17 But these trees also went down with the great tree to the place where the dead are. They went to join those who were killed in war. They had lived under the great tree’s shade. They were its friends among the nations.

18 “‘So no tree in Eden is equal to you in greatness and honor. But you will go down with the trees of Eden to the earth below. You will lie among unclean people who were killed in war.

“‘This will happen to the king of Egypt and all his people, says the Lord God.’”

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