Jeremiah 23

Woe unto the shepherds that destroy and scatter the flocks of my pasture! saith the Lord. Therefore thus hath said the Lord the God of Israel concerning the shepherds that feed my people, Ye have scattered my flocks, and driven them away, and have not taken care of them: now, behold, I will visit upon you the evil of your doings, saith the Lord. And I will indeed gather the remnant of my flock together out of all the countries whither I have driven them; and I will bring them back again to their folds: and they shall be fruitful and multiply. And I will raise up over them shepherds who shall feed them: and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, and none of them shall be missing, saith the Lord. Behold, days are coming, saith the Lord, when I will raise up unto David a righteous sprout, and he shall reign as king, and prosper, and he shall execute justice and righteousness on the earth. In his days shall Judah be helped, and Israel shall dwell in safety: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, The Lord is our righteousness. Therefore, behold, days are coming, saith the Lord, when they shall no more say, As the Lord liveth, who hath brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; But, As the Lord liveth, who hath brought up and who hath led forth the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country, and out of all countries whither I had driven them: and they shall dwell in their own land. To the prophets—Broken is my heart within me; all my bones shake; I am like a drunken man, and like a person whom wine hath overcome, because of the Lord, and because of his holy words. 10 For of adulterers is the land full; for because of false swearing mourneth the land, dried up are the pastures in the wilderness; because their course was for evil, and their strength was for injustice. 11 For both prophet and priest are hypocrites: yea, in my own house have I found their wickedness, saith the Lord. 12 Therefore shall their way be unto them as slippery ways in the darkness; they shall be pushed forward, and fall thereon; for I will bring upon them evil, the year of their punishment, saith the Lord. 13 And on the prophets of Samaria have I seen absurdity: they prophesied by Ba’al, and misled my people Israel. 14 But on the prophets of Jerusalem have I seen a horrible thing; they commit adultery, and walk in falsehood; and they strengthen the hands of evil-doers, so that not one of these doth return from his wickedness: they are become unto me all of them as Sodom, and its inhabitants as Gomorrah. 15 Therefore thus hath said the Lord of hosts concerning the prophets, Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, and make them drink poison-water; for from the prophets of Jerusalem is hypocrisy gone forth over all the land. 16 Thus hath said the Lord of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you, they bring you unto vanity: a vision of their own heart do they ever speak, not out of the mouth of the Lord. 17 They say indeed unto those that incense me, The Lord hath spoken, Peace shall ye have; and unto every one that walketh in the stubbornness of his own heart, they said, There shall come no evil upon you. 18 For who hath stood in the secret counsel of the Lord, that he could perceive and hear his word? who hath listened to his word and heard it? 19 Behold, the storm-wind of the Lord is gone forth in fury, yea, a whirling storm: upon the head of the wicked shall it fall grievously. 20 The anger of the Lord will not return, until he have executed, and until he have fulfilled the purposes of his heart: in the end of days shall ye understand this fully. 21 I had not sent these prophets, yet they ran: I had not spoken to them, yet they prophesied. 22 But if they had stood in my secret counsel, they should have announced my words to my people, and have caused them to turn back from their evil way, and from the wrongfulness of their doings. 23 Am I a God for those near at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God for those who are afar off? 24 If a man should hide himself in secret places should I not then see him? saith the Lord. Do I not fill the heavens and the earth? saith the Lord. 25 I have heard what the prophets have said, that prophesy falsely in my name, saying, I have dreamt, I have dreamt. 26 How long shall it be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy falsehood? yea, the prophets of the deceit of their own heart,— 27 How long do they think to cause my people to forget my name by their dreams which they relate every man to his neighbor, as their fathers forgot my name for the sake of Ba’al? 28 The prophet that hath had a dream, let him relate his dream; and he that hath received my word, let him speak my word of truth. What hath the straw to do with the corn? saith the Lord. 29 Is not thus my word, like the fire? saith the Lord, and like a hammer that shivereth the rock? 30 Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets, saith the Lord, that steal my words every one from his neighbor. 31 Behold, I am against the prophets, saith the Lord, that use their own word, and say, The Lord saith. 32 Behold, I am against those that prophesy with false dreams, saith the Lord, and do relate them, and mislead my people by their falsehoods, and by their vain boasting: while I have not sent them, nor commanded them; and they cannot bring the least profit to this people, saith the Lord. 33 And if this people, or the prophet, or a priest, should ask thee, saying, What is the message of the Lord? then shalt thou say unto them, Because of this "What is the message?" will I even cast you off, saith the Lord. 34 And as for the prophet, and the priest, and the people, that will say, "A message of the Lord," I will even inflict punishment on that man and on his house. 35 Thus shall ye say every one to his neighbor, and every one to his brother, What hath the Lord answered? and, What hath the Lord spoken? 36 But "A message of the Lord" shall ye not mention any more; for the message cometh indeed to the man of his prophetic word; but ye pervert the words of the living God, of the Lord of hosts our God. 37 Thus shalt thou say to the prophet, What hath the Lord answered thee? and, What hath the Lord spoken? 38 But if ye will say, "A message of the Lord," then thus saith the Lord, Because ye say this word, "A message of the Lord," and I have sent unto you, saying, Ye shall not say, "A message of the Lord:" 39 Therefore, behold, I am here, and I will tear you completely away, and I will cast you off, and the city that I have given to you and to your fathers, out of my presence; 40 And I will lay upon you an everlasting disgrace, and a perpetual shame, which shall not be forgotten.
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