Judah’s Sin and Punishment
1 “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 to 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 pursued his own 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 a
keep their time of migration,
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,’
when 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 trapped.
Since they have rejected the word of the LORD,
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 of them to the greatest,
all are greedy for gain;
from prophet to priest,
all practice deceit.
11 They dress the wound of the daughter of My people
with very little care,
saying, ‘Peace, peace,’
when there is no peace at all.
12 Are they ashamed of the abomination they have committed?
No, they have no shame at all;
they do not even know how to blush.
So 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.”
The People Respond
14 Why are we just sitting here?
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,
vipers that cannot be charmed,
and they will bite you,”
declares the LORD.
Jeremiah Weeps for His People
my 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?
7 a The precise identification of some of these birds is uncertain.
18 b Or O my Comforter in sorrow,