Judah's Sin and Punishment1 “At that time,” declares the LORD, “the bones of the kings of Judah, the bones of the officials, the bones of the priests, the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the people of Jerusalem will be removed from their graves. 2 They will be exposed to the sun and moon, and all the host of heaven which they have loved, served, followed, consulted, and worshiped. Their bones will not be gathered up [or] buried, but will become like dung lying on the ground. 3 And wherever I have banished them, the remnant of this evil family will choose death over life, declares the LORD of Hosts. 4 So you are to tell them this is what the LORD says: ‘Do [men] fall and not get up again? Does one turn away and not return? 5 Why [then] have these people turned away? Why does Jerusalem always turn away? They cling to deceit; they refuse to return. 6 I have listened and heard; they do not speak what is right. No one repents of his wickedness, asking, “What have I done?” Everyone has stayed his course like a horse charging into battle. 7 Even the stork in the sky knows her appointed seasons. The turtledove, the swift, and the thrush observe their time of migration, ▼
▼ The identification of some of these birds is uncertain.but My people do not know the requirements of the LORD. 8 How can you say, ‘We are wise, and the law of the LORD is with us?’ But in fact, the lying pen of the scribes has produced a deception. 9 The wise will be put to shame; they will be dismayed and snared. They have rejected the word of the LORD, so what wisdom do they really have? 10 Therefore I will give their wives to other men [and] their fields to new owners, for from the least to the greatest, all are greedy for gain; from the prophet to the priest, all practice deceit. 11 They dress the wounds of the daughter of My people with very little care, saying, ‘Peace, peace,’ when there is no peace. 12 Are they ashamed of their loathsome conduct? No, they have no shame at all, not even [enough] to blush. Therefore they will fall among the fallen. When I punish them, they will collapse, says the LORD. 13 I will take away their harvest, declares the LORD. There will be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the tree, and even the leaf will wither. Whatever I have given them will be lost to them.” 14 “Why are we just sitting here? Gather together, let us flee to the fortified cities and perish there, for the LORD our God has doomed us. He has given us poisoned water to drink, because we have sinned against the LORD. 15 We hoped for peace, but no good [has come] , for a time of healing, but there was only terror. 16 The snorting of [enemy] horses is heard from Dan. At the sound of the neighing of mighty steeds, the whole land quakes. They come to devour the land and everything in it, the city and all who dwell in it.” 17 “For behold, I will send snakes among you, poisonous vipers that cannot be charmed, and they will bite you,” declares the LORD.
Jeremiah Weeps for His People18 My sorrow is beyond healing; ▼
▼ Or O my Comforter in sorrowmy heart [is] faint within me. 19 Listen to the cry of the daughter of my people from a land far away, “Is the LORD no longer in Zion? Is her King no longer there?” “Why have they provoked Me to anger with their carved images, with their worthless foreign idols?” 20 “The harvest has passed, the summer has ended, but we have not been saved.” 21 For the brokenness of the daughter of my people I am crushed. I mourn; horror has gripped me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead? Is no physician there? Why then has the health of the daughter of my people not been restored?
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