Jeremiah Chapter 6 |
1Flee for refuge, O people of Benjamin,
Out of the midst of Jerusalem!
Blow the horn in Tekoa,
Set up a signal at Beth-haccherem!
For evil is appearing from the north,
And great disaster.
2Fair Zion, the lovely and delicate,
I will destroy.
3Against her come shepherds with their flocks,
They pitch tents all around her;
Each grazes the sheep under his care.
4Prepare for battle against her:
“Up! we will attack at noon.”
“Alas for us! for day is declining,
The shadows of evening grow long.”
5“Up! let us attack by night,
And wreck her fortresses.”
6For thus said the Lord of Hosts:
Hew down her trees,
And raise a siegemound against Jerusalem.
She is the city destined for punishment;
Only fraud is found in her midst.
7As a well flows with water,
So she flows with wickedness.
Lawlessness and rapine are heard in her;
Before Me constantly are sickness and wounds.
8Accept rebuke, O Jerusalem,
Lest I come to loathe you,
Lest I make you a desolation,
An uninhabited land.
9Thus said the Lord of Hosts:
Let them glean over and over, as a vine,
The remnant of Israel.
Pass your hand again,
Like a vintager,
Over its branches.
10To whom shall I speak,
Give warning that they may hear?
Their ears are blocked
And they cannot listen.
See, the word of the Lord has become for them
An object of scorn; they will have none of it.
11But I am filled with the wrath of the Lord,
I cannot hold it in.
Pour it on the infant in the street,
And on the company of youths gathered together!
Yes, men and women alike shall be captured,
Elders and those of advanced years.
12Their houses shall pass to others,
Fields and wives as well,
For I will stretch out My arm
Against the inhabitants of the country
—declares the Lord.
13For from the smallest to the greatest,
They are all greedy for gain;
Priest and prophet alike,
They all act falsely.
14They offer healing offhand
For the wounds of My people,
Saying, “All is well, all is well,”
When nothing is well.
15They have acted shamefully;
They have done abhorrent things—
Yet they do not feel shame,
And they cannot be made to blush.
Assuredly, they shall fall among the falling,
They shall stumble at the time when I punish them
—said the Lord.
16Thus said the Lord:
Stand by the roads and consider,
Inquire about ancient paths:
Which is the road to happiness?
Travel it, and find tranquillity for yourselves.
But they said, “We will not.”
17And I raised up watchmen for you:
“Hearken to the sound of the horn!”
But they said, “We will not.”
18Hear well, O nations,
And know, O community, what is in store for them.
19Hear, O earth!
I am going to bring disaster upon this people,
The outcome of their own schemes;
For they would not hearken to My words,
And they rejected My Instruction.
20What need have I of frankincense
That comes from Sheba,
Or fragrant cane from a distant land?
Your burnt offerings are not acceptable
And your sacrifices are not pleasing to Me.
21Assuredly, thus said the Lord:
I shall put before this people stumbling blocks
Over which they shall stumble—
Fathers and children alike,
Neighbor and friend shall perish.
22Thus said the Lord:
See, a people comes from the northland,
A great nation is roused
From the remotest parts of the earth.
23They grasp the bow and javelin;
They are cruel, they show no mercy;
The sound of them is like the roaring sea.
They ride upon horses,
Accoutered like a man for battle,
Against you, O Fair Zion!
24“We have heard the report of them,
Our hands fail;
Pain seizes us,
Agony like a woman in childbirth.
25Do not go out into the country,
Do not walk the roads!
For the sword of the enemy is there,
Terror on every side.”
26My poor people,
Put on sackcloth
And strew dust on yourselves!
Mourn, as for an only child;
For suddenly the destroyer
Is coming upon us.
27I have made you an assayer of My people
You are to note and assay their ways.
28They are copper and iron:
They are all stubbornly defiant;
They deal basely
All of them act corruptly.
29The bellows puff;
The lead is consumed by fire.
Yet the smelter smelts to no purpose—
The dross is not separated out.
30They are called “rejected silver,”
For the Lord has rejected them.