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The Commission of Jeremiah

The words of Jeremiah the son of Hilkiah, of the priests who were in Anathoth in the land of Benjamin, to whom the word of the Lord came in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign. It came also in the days of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, to the end of the eleventh year of Zedekiah the son of Josiah, king of Judah, until the captivity of Jerusalem in the fifth month.

Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
    and before you were born I sanctified you,
    and I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”

Then I said, “Ah, Lord God! Truly, I cannot speak, for I am a youth.”

But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am a youth.’ For you shall go everywhere that I send you, and whatever I command you, you shall speak. Do not be afraid of their faces. For I am with you to deliver you,” says the Lord.

Then the Lord put forth His hand and touched my mouth. And the Lord said to me, “Now, I have put My words in your mouth. 10 See, I have this day set you over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out and to pull down, to destroy and to throw down, to build and to plant.”

The Almond Rod and Boiling Pot

11 Moreover the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Jeremiah, what do you see?”

And I said, “I see a branch of an almond tree.”

12 Then the Lord said to me, “You have seen well. For I will hasten My word to perform it.”

13 The word of the Lord came to me the second time, saying, “What do you see?”

And I said, “I see a boiling pot, and it is facing away from the north.”

14 Then the Lord said to me: Out of the north calamity will break forth on all the inhabitants of the land. 15 For I will call all the families of the kingdoms of the north, says the Lord.

And they will come and they will set each one his throne
    at the entrance of the gates of Jerusalem,
and against all the walls all around,
    and against all the cities of Judah.
16 I will utter My judgments against them
    concerning all their wickedness, whereby they have forsaken Me
and have burned incense to other gods,
    and have worshipped the works of their own hands.

17 You therefore gird up your loins and arise, and speak to them all that I command you. Do not be dismayed at their faces, lest I confound you before them. 18 For indeed, I have made you this day a fortified city and an iron pillar and bronze walls against the whole land, against the kings of Judah, against the officials, against the priests, and against the people of the land. 19 They will fight against you, but they will not prevail against you, for I am with you, says the Lord, to deliver you.