The Potter and the Clay1The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: 2“Arise, and go down to athe potter’s house, and there I will let you hear my words.” 3So I went down to bthe potter’s house, and there he was working at his wheel. 4And the vessel he was making of clay was cspoiled in the potter’s hand, and dhe reworked it into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to do.
5Then the word of the Lord came to me: 6“O house of Israel, ecan I not do with you as this potter has done? declares the Lord. fBehold, like the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand, O house of Israel. 7If at any time I declare concerning a nation or a kingdom, that I will gpluck up and break down and destroy it, 8and if that nation, concerning which I have spoken, hturns from its evil, iI will relent of the disaster that I intended to do to it. 9And if at any time I declare concerning a nation or a kingdom that I will jbuild and plant it, 10and if it does evil in my sight, not listening to my voice, then I will relent of the good that I had intended to do to it. 11Now, therefore, say to the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem: ‘Thus says the Lord, Behold, I am shaping disaster against you and devising a plan against you. kReturn, every one from his evil way, and lamend your ways and your deeds.’
12“But they say, m‘That is in vain! We will follow our own plans, and will every one act according to nthe stubbornness of his evil heart.’
13 “Therefore thus says the Lord:
oAsk among the nations,
Who has heard the like of this?
The virgin Israel
has done pa very horrible thing.
14Does the snow of Lebanon leave
the crags of Sirion? ▼
▼Hebrew of the field
Do the mountain waters run dry ▼
▼Hebrew Are foreign waters plucked up
the cold flowing streams?
15 sBut my people have forgotten me;
they make offerings to tfalse gods;
they made them stumble in their ways,
uin the ancient roads,
and to walk into side roads,
vnot the highway,
16making their land wa horror,
a thing xto be hissed at forever.
yEveryone who passes by it is horrified
zand shakes his head.
17 aaLike the east wind abI will scatter them
before the enemy.
acI will show them my back, not my face,
in the day of their calamity.”
18Then they said, ad“Come, let us make plots against Jeremiah, aefor the law shall not perish from the priest, nor counsel from the wise, nor the word from the prophet. afCome, let us strike him with the tongue, and let us not pay attention to any of his words.”
19 Hear me, O Lord,
and aglisten to the voice of my adversaries.
20 ahShould good be repaid with evil?
Yet aithey have dug a pit for my life.
ajRemember how I stood before you
to speak good for them,
to turn away your wrath from them.
21Therefore akdeliver up their children to famine;
give them over to the power of the sword;
let their wives become childless aland widowed.
May their men meet death by pestilence,
their youths be struck down by the sword in battle.
22 amMay a cry be heard from their houses,
when you bring the plunderer suddenly upon them!
For anthey have dug a pit to take me
aoand laid snares for my feet.
23Yet apyou, O Lord, know
all their plotting to kill me.
aqForgive not their iniquity,
nor blot out their sin from your sight.
Let them be overthrown before you;
deal with them in the time of your anger.
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