1Yahweh gave me another message. He said,
2“You human, prophesy about the leaders of Israel. They should be taking care of my people like MET shepherds take care of their sheep. Say to them, ‘This is what Yahweh the Lord says: Terrible things will happen to you leaders MET of Israel who only take care of yourselves! You should certainly RHQ take care of your people like MET a shepherd takes care of his flock of sheep!
3It is as though you eat the curds, you slaughter the very good animals and wear clothes made from their wool. But you do not take care of the flock.
4You have not enabled those who are weak to become strong. You have not healed those who were sick. You have not bandaged those who were wounded/injured. You have not brought back those who went astray. You have not searched for those who became lost. You have ruled your people harshly and cruelly.
5So they were scattered, because you did not take care of them like MET a shepherd takes care of his sheep. And when they were scattered, it was as though wild animals attacked and killed them and ate their flesh.
6My people wandered like sheep all over the high hills and mountains. They were scattered all over the earth, and no one searched for them DOU.
7Therefore, you who should be acting like shepherds, listen to what I, Yahweh the Lord say:
8As surely as I am alive, my people are like a flock of sheep that has no shepherd, and as a result it is as though wild animals have attacked my people and eaten them. You did not search for them; instead, you only wanted to provide food for yourselves.
9Therefore, you who should be like MET shepherds, listen to what I, Yahweh say:
10I am opposed to you leaders who should be like MET shepherds for my people. I will remove you from taking care of my people, with the result that you will no longer feed yourselves instead of feeding them. I will rescue my people from you, with the result that you will longer be able to butcher them and eat them.
11This is what I, Yahweh the Lord, say to you leaders: I myself will search for my sheep and take care of them.
12Like a shepherd finds his scattered sheep, I will rescue my people from all the places to which they have been scattered, at a time when things were very gloomy and they experienced disasters.
13I will bring them back from many countries and gather them together again in their own land. Because my people are like sheep MET, it is as though I will enable them to find good pastureland on the hills of Israel, and in the ravines, and in the villages of Israel.
14It is as though I will allow them to graze in good pastures on the mountaintops. They will lie down in good ◄grazing areas/grassy fields► there DOU.
15I myself will take care of my people and enable them to lie down and rest.
16I will search for those who are lost and bring back the ones who have strayed away. I will bandage those who have been injured and strengthen those who are weak. But I will get rid of those who are fat and powerful. I will act fairly toward the people who are like MET my sheep. That is what I, Yahweh, promise.
17And as for you who are like MET my sheep, this is what I, Yahweh the Lord, say: I will judge between each of you; and I will separate those that are peaceful like sheep from those that are always trying to dominate others like goats.
18It is bad that RHQ some of you keep the best pastures for yourselves. It is even worse that RHQ you trample the good grass with your feet. You yourselves drink the clear water RHQ. But with your feet you cause the other water to become muddy RHQ.
19It is as though you RHQ are forcing my flock to eat the grass that you have trampled and to drink the water that you have caused to become muddy!
20Therefore, this is what I, Yahweh the Lord, say to you: I myself will judge between those of you who are like MET the fat sheep and those of you who are like the thin sheep.
21You who are like strong sheep, it is as though with your shoulders and buttocks you have shoved away those who are like thin sheep, and you have butted them with your horns, until you have chased them all away from the good pastureland.
22But I will rescue my people, and they no longer will be ◄harassed/treated cruelly►. I will judge between one person and another.
23And I will appoint one leader MET for them, someone who will be like King David, who served me very well. That leader will take care of them and be like their shepherd.
24I, Yahweh, will be their God, and the one who is like MET King David will be their king. That will surely happen because I, Yahweh, have said it.
25I will make a peace agreement with the people of Israel. In this agreement I will promise to get rid of all the wild animals in Israel, in order that my people may live safely, even in the desert and in the forests.
26I will bless them, and I will bless the places close to my sacred hill. I will bless them by sending them rain showers at the right season; they will be showers to bless them.
27The fruit trees will produce fruit and the ground will produce crops. And my people will live safely in their land. When I rescue them from people who caused them to be slaves MET, DOU, they will know that I, Yahweh, have the power to do what I say that I will do.
28Soldiers from other nations will no longer take away their valuable possessions, and wild animals will no longer attack them. They will live safely, and no one will cause them to be afraid.
29I will cause their land to be famous/well-known for its good crops. There will no longer be famines in the land, and people in other nations will no longer ridicule them.
30Then they will know that I, Yahweh their God, am helping them, and they will know that they, the Israeli people, are my people.
31It will be as though MET my people are my sheep whom I will take care of, and I will be their God. That is what I, Yahweh the Lord, declare.’”