Jeremiah 8:4-11:23 New International Version (NIV)
Sin and Punishment
4 “Say to them, ‘This is what the Lord says:
“‘When people fall down, do they not get up?
8 “‘How can you say, “We are wise,
13 “‘I will take away their harvest,
14 Why are we sitting here?
17 “See, I will send venomous snakes among you,
18 You who are my Comforter[b] in sorrow,
“Why have they aroused my anger with their images,
20 “The harvest is past,
21 Since my people are crushed, I am crushed;
9 [c]1 Oh, that my head were a spring of water
3 “They make ready their tongue
7 Therefore this is what the Lord Almighty says:
“See, I will refine and test them,
10 I will weep and wail for the mountains
11 “I will make Jerusalem a heap of ruins,
12 Who is wise enough to understand this? Who has been instructed by the Lord and can explain it? Why has the land been ruined and laid waste like a desert that no one can cross?
13 The Lord said, “It is because they have forsaken my law, which I set before them; they have not obeyed me or followed my law. 14 Instead, they have followed the stubbornness of their hearts; they have followed the Baals, as their ancestors taught them.” 15 Therefore this is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: “See, I will make this people eat bitter food and drink poisoned water. 16 I will scatter them among nations that neither they nor their ancestors have known, and I will pursue them with the sword until I have made an end of them.”
17 This is what the Lord Almighty says:
“Consider now! Call for the wailing women to come;
20 Now, you women, hear the word of the Lord;
22 Say, “This is what the Lord declares:
“‘Dead bodies will lie
23 This is what the Lord says:
“Let not the wise boast of their wisdom
25 “The days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will punish all who are circumcised only in the flesh— 26 Egypt, Judah, Edom, Ammon, Moab and all who live in the wilderness in distant places.[g] For all these nations are really uncircumcised, and even the whole house of Israel is uncircumcised in heart.”
God and Idols
10 Hear what the Lord says to you, people of Israel. 2 This is what the Lord says:
“Do not learn the ways of the nations
6 No one is like you, Lord;
8 They are all senseless and foolish;
11 “Tell them this: ‘These gods, who did not make the heavens and the earth, will perish from the earth and from under the heavens.’”[h]
12 But God made the earth by his power;
14 Everyone is senseless and without knowledge;
17 Gather up your belongings to leave the land,
19 Woe to me because of my injury!
23 Lord, I know that people’s lives are not their own;
The Covenant Is Broken
11 This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: 2 “Listen to the terms of this covenant and tell them to the people of Judah and to those who live in Jerusalem. 3 Tell them that this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Cursed is the one who does not obey the terms of this covenant— 4 the terms I commanded your ancestors when I brought them out of Egypt, out of the iron-smelting furnace.’ I said, ‘Obey me and do everything I command you, and you will be my people, and I will be your God. 5 Then I will fulfill the oath I swore to your ancestors, to give them a land flowing with milk and honey’—the land you possess today.”
I answered, “Amen, Lord.”
6 The Lord said to me, “Proclaim all these words in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem: ‘Listen to the terms of this covenant and follow them. 7 From the time I brought your ancestors up from Egypt until today, I warned them again and again, saying, “Obey me.” 8 But they did not listen or pay attention; instead, they followed the stubbornness of their evil hearts. So I brought on them all the curses of the covenant I had commanded them to follow but that they did not keep.’”
9 Then the Lord said to me, “There is a conspiracy among the people of Judah and those who live in Jerusalem. 10 They have returned to the sins of their ancestors, who refused to listen to my words. They have followed other gods to serve them. Both Israel and Judah have broken the covenant I made with their ancestors. 11 Therefore this is what the Lord says: ‘I will bring on them a disaster they cannot escape. Although they cry out to me, I will not listen to them. 12 The towns of Judah and the people of Jerusalem will go and cry out to the gods to whom they burn incense, but they will not help them at all when disaster strikes. 13 You, Judah, have as many gods as you have towns; and the altars you have set up to burn incense to that shameful god Baal are as many as the streets of Jerusalem.’
14 “Do not pray for this people or offer any plea or petition for them, because I will not listen when they call to me in the time of their distress.
15 “What is my beloved doing in my temple
16 The Lord called you a thriving olive tree
17 The Lord Almighty, who planted you, has decreed disaster for you, because the people of both Israel and Judah have done evil and aroused my anger by burning incense to Baal.
Plot Against Jeremiah
18 Because the Lord revealed their plot to me, I knew it, for at that time he showed me what they were doing. 19 I had been like a gentle lamb led to the slaughter; I did not realize that they had plotted against me, saying,
“Let us destroy the tree and its fruit;
21 Therefore this is what the Lord says about the people of Anathoth who are threatening to kill you, saying, “Do not prophesy in the name of the Lord or you will die by our hands”— 22 therefore this is what the Lord Almighty says: “I will punish them. Their young men will die by the sword, their sons and daughters by famine. 23 Not even a remnant will be left to them, because I will bring disaster on the people of Anathoth in the year of their punishment.”
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