28 Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, Whose glorious beauty is a fading flower Which is at the head of the [a]verdant valleys, To those who are overcome with wine! 2 Behold, the Lord has a mighty and strong one, Like a tempest of hail and a destroying storm, Like a flood of mighty waters overflowing, Who will bring them down to the earth with His hand. 3 The crown of pride, the drunkards of Ephraim, Will be trampled underfoot; 4 And the glorious beauty is a fading flower Which is at the head of the [b]verdant valley, Like the first fruit before the summer, Which an observer sees; He eats it up while it is still in his hand.
5 In that day the Lord of hosts will be For a crown of glory and a diadem of beauty To the remnant of His people, 6 For a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment, And for strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate.
7 But they also have erred through wine, And through intoxicating drink are out of the way; The priest and the prophet have erred through intoxicating drink, They are swallowed up by wine, They are out of the way through intoxicating drink; They err in vision, they stumble in judgment. 8 For all tables are full of vomit and filth; No place is clean.
9 “Whom will he teach knowledge? And whom will he make to understand the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just drawn from the breasts? 10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little.”
11 For with stammering lips and another tongue He will speak to this people, 12 To whom He said, “This is the rest with which You may cause the weary to rest,” And, “This is the refreshing”; Yet they would not hear. 13 But the word of the Lord was to them, “Precept upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little,” That they might go and fall backward, and be broken And snared and caught.
14 Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scornful men, Who rule this people who are in Jerusalem, 15 Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death, And with Sheol we are in agreement. When the overflowing scourge passes through, It will not come to us, For we have made lies our refuge, And under falsehood we have hidden ourselves.”
“Behold, I lay in Zion a stone for a foundation, A tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; Whoever believes will not act hastily. 17 Also I will make justice the measuring line, And righteousness the plummet; The hail will sweep away the refuge of lies, And the waters will overflow the hiding place. 18 Your covenant with death will be annulled, And your agreement with Sheol will not stand; When the overflowing scourge passes through, Then you will be trampled down by it. 19 As often as it goes out it will take you; For morning by morning it will pass over, And by day and by night; It will be a terror just to understand the report.”
20 For the bed is too short to stretch out on, And the covering so narrow that one cannot wrap himself in it. 21 For the Lord will rise up as at Mount Perazim, He will be angry as in the Valley of Gibeon— That He may do His work, His awesome work, And bring to pass His act, His [a]unusual act. 22 Now therefore, do not be mockers, Lest your bonds be made strong; For I have heard from the Lord God of hosts, A [b]destruction determined even upon the whole earth.
Listen to the Teaching of God
23 Give ear and hear my voice, Listen and hear my speech. 24 Does the plowman keep plowing all day to sow? Does he keep turning his soil and breaking the clods? 25 When he has leveled its surface, Does he not sow the black cummin And scatter the cummin, Plant the wheat in rows, The barley in the appointed place, And the [c]spelt in its place? 26 For He instructs him in right judgment, His God teaches him.
27 For the black cummin is not threshed with a threshing sledge, Nor is a cartwheel rolled over the cummin; But the black cummin is beaten out with a stick, And the cummin with a rod. 28 Bread flour must be ground; Therefore he does not thresh it forever, Break it with his cartwheel, Or crush it with his horsemen. 29 This also comes from the Lord of hosts, Who is wonderful in counsel and excellent in [d]guidance.
What ails you now, that you have all gone up to the housetops, 2 You who are full of noise, A [b]tumultuous city, a joyous city? Your slain men are not slain with the sword, Nor dead in battle. 3 All your rulers have fled together; They are captured by the archers. All who are found in you are bound together; They have fled from afar. 4 Therefore I said, “Look away from me, I will weep bitterly; Do not labor to comfort me Because of the plundering of the daughter of my people.”
5 For it is a day of trouble and treading down and perplexity By the Lord God of hosts In the Valley of Vision— Breaking down the walls And of crying to the mountain. 6 Elam bore the quiver With chariots of men and horsemen, And Kir uncovered the shield. 7 It shall come to pass that your choicest valleys Shall be full of chariots, And the horsemen shall set themselves in array at the gate.
8 He removed the [c]protection of Judah. You looked in that day to the armor of the House of the Forest; 9 You also saw the [d]damage to the city of David, That it was great; And you gathered together the waters of the lower pool. 10 You numbered the houses of Jerusalem, And the houses you broke down To fortify the wall. 11 You also made a reservoir between the two walls For the water of the old pool. But you did not look to its Maker, Nor did you have respect for Him who fashioned it long ago.
12 And in that day the Lord God of hosts Called for weeping and for mourning, For baldness and for girding with sackcloth. 13 But instead, joy and gladness, Slaying oxen and killing sheep, Eating meat and drinking wine: “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!”
14 Then it was revealed in my hearing by the Lord of hosts, “Surely for this iniquity there will be no atonement for you, Even to your death,” says the Lord God of hosts.
29 “Woe to [a]Ariel, to Ariel, the city where David dwelt! Add year to year; Let feasts come around. 2 Yet I will distress Ariel; There shall be heaviness and sorrow, And it shall be to Me as Ariel. 3 I will encamp against you all around, I will lay siege against you with a mound, And I will raise siegeworks against you. 4 You shall be brought down, You shall speak out of the ground; Your speech shall be low, out of the dust; Your voice shall be like a medium’s, out of the ground; And your speech shall whisper out of the dust.
5 “Moreover the multitude of your foes Shall be like fine dust, And the multitude of the terrible ones Like chaff that passes away; Yes, it shall be in an instant, suddenly. 6 You will be punished by the Lord of hosts With thunder and earthquake and great noise, With storm and tempest And the flame of devouring fire. 7 The multitude of all the nations who fight against [b]Ariel, Even all who fight against her and her fortress, And distress her, Shall be as a dream of a night vision. 8 It shall even be as when a hungry man dreams, And look—he eats; But he awakes, and his soul is still empty; Or as when a thirsty man dreams, And look—he drinks; But he awakes, and indeed he is faint, And his soul still craves: So the multitude of all the nations shall be, Who fight against Mount Zion.”
33 Woe to you who plunder, though you have not been plundered; And you who deal treacherously, though they have not dealt treacherously with you! When you cease plundering, You will be plundered; When you make an end of dealing treacherously, They will deal treacherously with you.
9 Pause and wonder! Blind yourselves and be blind! They are drunk, but not with wine; They stagger, but not with intoxicating drink. 10 For the Lord has poured out on you The spirit of deep sleep, And has closed your eyes, namely, the prophets; And He has covered your heads, namely,the seers.
11 The whole vision has become to you like the words of a [a]book that is sealed, which men deliver to one who is literate, saying, “Read this, please.”
And he says, “I cannot, for it is sealed.”
12 Then the book is delivered to one who [b]is illiterate, saying, “Read this, please.”
14 Therefore, behold, I will again do a marvelous work Among this people, A marvelous work and a wonder; For the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, And the understanding of their prudent men shall be hidden.”
15 Woe to those who seek deep to hide their counsel far from the Lord, And their works are in the dark; They say, “Who sees us?” and, “Who knows us?” 16 Surely you have things turned around! Shall the potter be esteemed as the clay; For shall the thing made say of him who made it, “He did not make me”? Or shall the thing formed say of him who formed it, “He has no understanding”?
Future Recovery of Wisdom
17 Is it not yet a very little while Till Lebanon shall be turned into a fruitful field, And the fruitful field be esteemed as a forest? 18 In that day the deaf shall hear the words of the book, And the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity and out of darkness. 19 The humble also shall increase their joy in the Lord, And the poor among men shall rejoice In the Holy One of Israel. 20 For the [a]terrible one is brought to nothing, The scornful one is consumed, And all who watch for iniquity are cut off— 21 Who make a man an offender by a word, And lay a snare for him who reproves in the gate, And turn aside the just by empty words.
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