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And Jehovah will say to me, Thou shalt not say, I a boy; for thou shalt go to all to whom I shall send thee, and all which I shall command thee thou shalt speak

Then the Lord said to me, Out of the north the evil [which the prophets had foretold as the result of national sin] shall disclose itself and break forth upon all the inhabitants of the land.

"Now, gird up your loins and arise, and speak to them all which I command you Do not be dismayed before them, or I will dismay you before them.

For I, behold, I have made you this day a fortified city and an iron pillar and bronze walls against the whole land -- "against the [successive] kings of Judah, against its princes, against its priests, and against the people of the land [giving you divine strength which no hostile power can overcome].

Israel was holiness [something set apart from ordinary purposes, dedicated] to the Lord, the firstfruits of His harvest [of which no stranger was allowed to partake]; all who ate of it [injuring Israel] offended and became guilty; evil came upon them, says the Lord.

And they never said, Where is the Lord, who took us up out of the land of Egypt; who was our guide through the waste of sand, through an unplanted land full of deep holes, through a dry land of deep shade, which no one went through and where no man was living?

The priests did not say, 'Where [is] Yahweh?' and those who handle the law did not know me, and the shepherds have {rebelled against me}, and the prophets prophesied by Baal, and they went after [things which] do not profit.

Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? but my people have changed their glory for that which doth not profit.

For long ago [in Egypt] I broke your yoke and burst your bonds [not that you might be free, but that you might serve Me] and long ago you shattered the yoke and snapped the bonds [of My law which I put upon you]; you said, I will not serve and obey You! For upon every high hill and under every green tree you [eagerly] prostrated yourself [in idolatrous worship], playing the harlot.

[Cease from your mad running after idols, from which you get nothing but bitter injury.] Keep your feet from being unshod and your throat from thirst. But you said, It is hopeless! For I have loved strangers and foreigners, and after them I will go.

Where then are thy gods which thou hast made for thyself? Let them arise, if they can save thee in the time of thy calamity, - For according to the number of thy cities, have become thy gods O Judah.

The LORD said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king, Hast thou seen that which backsliding Israel hath done? she is gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there hath played the harlot.

And I saw when for all the causes by which rebellious Israel committed adultery, I had put her away and given her a bill of divorce; yet her rebellious sister Judah did not fear, but went and played the harlot also.

And it shall be that when you have multiplied and increased in the land in those days, says the Lord, they shall no more say, The ark of the covenant of the Lord. It shall not come to mind, nor shall they [seriously] remember it, nor shall they miss or visit it, nor shall it be repaired or made again [for instead of the ark, which represented God's presence, He will show Himself to be present throughout the city].

Then shall Jerusalem be called the LORD's seat, and all Heathen shall be gathered unto it, for the name of the LORD's sake, which shall be set up at Jerusalem. And from that time forth, they shall follow no more the imagination of their own froward heart.

In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel; and they shall come together out of the land of the north, to the land which I caused your fathers to inherit.

[We have been ruined as a nation by our faithlessness and idolatry] for the shameful thing has consumed all for which our fathers toiled from our youth -- "their flocks and their herds, their sons and their daughters.

For this I am not propitious to thee, Thy sons have forsaken Me, And are satisfied by that which is not god, I satisfy them, and they commit adultery, And at the house of a harlot They gather themselves together.

Because of that, the Lord, the God who rules over all, said to me, "Because these people have spoken like this, I will make the words that I put in your mouth like fire. And I will make this people like wood which the fiery judgments you speak will burn up."

And they shall eat up thine harvest, and thy bread, which thy sons and thy daughters should eat: they shall eat up thy flocks and thine herds: they shall eat up thy vines and thy fig trees: they shall impoverish thy fenced cities, wherein thou trustedst, with the sword.

And it will come about, when you say, Why has the Lord our God done all these things to us? that you will say to them, As you gave me up, making yourselves servants to strange gods in your land, so will you be servants to strange men in a land which is not yours.

Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:

Fear ye not me? saith the LORD: will ye not tremble at my presence, which have placed the sand for the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass it: and though the waves thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it?

They think not in their hearts, 'O let us fear the LORD our God, that giveth us rain, early and late, when need is: which keepeth ever still the harvest for us yearly.'

Your iniquities, have thrust away these things, Yea, your sins, have withholden that which is good from you.

And like as a net is full of birds, so are their houses full of that which they have gotten with falsity and deceit. Hereof cometh their great substance and riches,

For the Lord of hosts has said, Hew down her trees and cast up a siege mound against Jerusalem. This is the city which must be punished; there is nothing but oppression within her.

Thus saith Jehovah: Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the ancient paths, which is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

Therefore hear, O nations, and know, O company, That which is upon them.

The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,

Then I will let you go on living in this place, in the land which I gave to your fathers in the past and for ever.

Will you take the goods of others, put men to death, and be untrue to your wives, and take false oaths, and have perfumes burned to the Baal, and go after other gods which are strange to you;

And come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, We are delivered to do all these abominations?

But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I set my name at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel.

Therefore will I do unto this house, which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh.

So," the Lord God says, "my raging fury will be poured out on this land. It will be poured out on human beings and animals, on trees and crops. And it will burn like a fire which cannot be extinguished."

"But this is what I commanded them, saying, 'Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you will be My people; and you will walk in all the way which I command you, that it may be well with you.'

And thou shalt say unto them, This is the nation which hath not hearkened unto the voice of Jehovah their God, nor received correction; fidelity is perished, and is cut off from their mouth.

Cut thou off thy crown of hair O Jerusalem , and cast it away, And lift thou up on the bare heights, a dirge, - For Yahweh hath rejected and cast out the generation with which he was wroth.

For the children of Judah have done evil in my sight, saith the LORD: they have set their abominations in the house which is called by my name, to pollute it.

And they have built the high places of Tophet, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I commanded them not, neither came it into my heart.

and they shall spread them before the sun, and the moon, and all the host of heaven, which they have loved, and which they have served, and after which they have walked, and which they have sought, and which they have worshipped: they shall not be gathered, nor be buried, they shall be for dung upon the face of the earth.

And death shall be chosen rather than life by all the residue of them that remain of this evil family, which remain in all the places whither I have driven them, saith the LORD of hosts.

[Even the migratory birds are punctual to their seasons.] Yes, the stork [excelling in the great height of her flight] in the heavens knows her appointed times [of migration], and the turtledove, the swallow, and the crane observe the time of their return. But My people do not know the law of the Lord [which the lower animals instinctively recognize in so far as it applies to them].

"From Dan is heard the snorting of their horses, from the sound of the neighing of their stallions all the land quakes, for they come and devour the land, and that which fills [the] city, and [those who] live in it.

For, behold, I will send serpents, cockatrices, among you, which will not be charmed, and they shall bite you, saith the LORD.

The voice of the cry of the daughter of my people comes from a far land: Is the Lord not in Zion? is not her King in her? Why have they made me angry with their images and their strange gods which are no gods?

And they bend their tongue, [which is] their bow for the lies [they shoot]. And not according to faithfulness do they rule and become strong in the land; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they do not know and understand and acknowledge Me, says the Lord.

I said, "Who is wise enough to understand why this has happened? Who has a word from the Lord that can explain it? Why does the land lie in ruins? Why is it as scorched as a desert through which no one travels?"

And the LORD saith, Because they have forsaken my law which I set before them, and have not obeyed my voice, neither walked therein;

And I have scattered them among nations Which they knew not, they and their fathers, And have sent after them the sword, Till I have consumed them.

But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.

Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will punish all them which are circumcised with the uncircumcised;

Hear ye the word which the LORD speaketh unto you, O house of Israel:

For the customs and ordinances of the peoples are false, empty, and futile; it is but a tree which one cuts out of the forest [to make for himself a god], the work of the hands of the craftsman with the ax or other tool.

There is silver beaten into plates, which is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the artificer and of the hands of the goldsmith; blue and purple for their clothing; they are all the work of skilful men.

Let your wrath be let loose on the nations which have no knowledge of you, and on the families who give no worship to your name: for they have made a meal of Jacob, truly they have made a meal of him and put an end to him and made his fields a waste.

Which I commanded your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, Obey my voice, and do them, according to all which I command you: so shall ye be my people, and I will be your God:

That I may perform the oath which I have sworn unto your fathers, to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, as it is this day. Then answered I, and said, So be it, O LORD.

Yet they obeyed not, nor inclined their ear, but walked every one in the imagination of their evil heart: therefore I will bring upon them all the words of this covenant, which I commanded them to do; but they did them not.

They are turned back to the iniquities of their forefathers, which refused to hear my words; and they went after other gods to serve them: the house of Israel and the house of Judah have broken my covenant which I made with their fathers.

Therefore thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will bring evil upon them, which they shall not be able to escape; and though they shall cry unto me, I will not hearken unto them.

Then shall the cities of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem go and cry unto the gods unto which they offer incense: but they will not save them at all in the time of their trouble.

For the LORD of hosts, that planted thee, hath pronounced evil against thee, for the evil of the house of Israel and of the house of Judah, which they have done against themselves to provoke me to anger in offering incense unto Baal.

O LORD, thou art more righteous than that I should dispute with thee: Nevertheless, let me talk with thee in things reasonable. How happeneth it, that the way of the ungodly is so prosperous? And that it goeth so well with them, which without any shame offend and live in wickedness?

For -- with footmen thou hast run, And they weary thee, And how dost thou fret thyself with horses! Even in the land of peace, In which thou art confident -- And how dost thou in the rising of Jordan!

Thus saith the LORD against all mine evil neighbours, that touch the inheritance which I have caused my people Israel to inherit; Behold, I will pluck them out of their land, and pluck out the house of Judah from among them.

Take the girdle that thou hast got, which is upon thy loins, and arise, go to Euphrates, and hide it there in a hole of the rock.

And it came to pass after many days, that the LORD said unto me, Arise, go to Euphrates, and take the girdle from thence, which I commanded thee to hide there.

And I shall go to Euphrates, and dig, and take the girdle from the place which I hid it there: and behold, the girdle was corrupted, it will not profit for anything.

"I, the Lord, say: 'This shows how I will ruin the highly exalted position in which Judah and Jerusalem take pride.

This evil people, which refuse to hear my words, which walk in the imagination of their heart, and walk after other gods, to serve them, and to worship them, shall even be as this girdle, which is good for nothing.

Let your eyes be lifted up (O Jerusalem), and see those who are coming from the north. Where is the flock which was given to you, your beautiful flock?

This is your fate, the destiny to which I have appointed you, because you have forgotten me and have trusted in false gods.

That which hath been the word of Jehovah unto Jeremiah concerning the matters of the dearths:

Because of the ground which is cracked, for that no rain hath been in the land, the plowmen are put to shame, they cover their heads.

Why are you like a man taken by surprise, like a strong man who can't deliver? You are among us, LORD, and your name is the one by which we're called. Don't abandon us!

Therefore thus hath the LORD said concerning the prophets that prophesy in my name which I did not send and that say, Sword and famine shall not be in this land; By sword and famine shall those prophets be consumed.

And the people which they are prophesying to them shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem, from the face of the famine and the sword; and none to them burying them, their wives and their sons and their daughters; and I poured their evil upon them.

Have you completely given up Judah? is your soul turned in disgust from Zion? why have you given us blows from which there is no one to make us well? we were looking for peace, but no good came; and for a time of well-being, but there was only a great fear.

And I will cause them to be removed into all kingdoms of the earth, because of Manasseh the son of Hezekiah king of Judah, for that which he did in Jerusalem.

And I will make thee to pass with thine enemies into a land which thou knowest not: for a fire is kindled in mine anger, which shall burn upon you.

For this cause the Lord has said, If you will come back, then I will again let you take your place before me; and if you give out what is of value and not that which has no value, you will be as my mouth: let them come back to you, but do not go back to them.

And it shall come to pass, when thou shalt declare unto this people all these words, and they shall say unto thee, Wherefore hath Jehovah pronounced all this great evil against us? and what is our iniquity? and what is our sin which we have committed against Jehovah our God?

For this reason I will send you away out of this land into a land which is strange to you, to you and to your fathers; there you will be the servants of other gods day and night, and you will have no mercy from me.

"Behold therefore, sayeth the LORD, the days are come that it shall no more be said, 'The LORD liveth, which brought the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt.'

but, As Jehovah liveth, who brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north, and from all the lands whither he had driven them. For I will bring them again into their land, which I gave unto their fathers.

First [before I bring them back to their land] I will doubly recompense and punish them for their iniquity and their sin, because they have polluted My land with the carcasses of their detestable idols and with the abominable things offered to false gods with which they have filled My inheritance.

[Then said Jeremiah] O Lord, my Strength and my Stronghold, and my Refuge in the day of affliction, to You shall the nations come from the ends of the earth and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited nothing but lies, emptiness, and futility, worthless things in which there is no profit!

Shall a man make unto himself gods, which yet are no gods?

And thou, even thyself, shalt discontinue from thine heritage that I gave thee; and I will cause thee to serve thine enemies in the land which thou knowest not: for ye have kindled a fire in mine anger, which shall burn for ever.

For he shall be like the shrub in the desert, and shall not see when good comes; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land which is not inhabited.