The Lord Will Not Relent

15 Then the Lord said to me, (A)Even if (B)Moses and (C)Samuel stood before Me, My [a]mind would not be favorable toward this people. Cast them out of My sight, and let them go forth. And it shall be, if they say to you, ‘Where should we go?’ then you shall tell them, ‘Thus says the Lord:

(D)“Such as are for death, to death;
And such as are for the sword, to the sword;
And such as are for the famine, to the famine;
And such as are for the (E)captivity, to the captivity.” ’

“And I will (F)appoint over them four forms of destruction,” says the Lord: “the sword to slay, the dogs to drag, (G)the birds of the heavens and the beasts of the earth to devour and destroy. I will hand them over to (H)trouble, to all kingdoms of the earth, because of (I)Manasseh the son of Hezekiah, king of Judah, for what he did in Jerusalem.

“For who will have pity on you, O Jerusalem?
Or who will bemoan you?
Or who will turn aside to ask how you are doing?
(J)You have forsaken Me,” says the Lord,
“You have (K)gone backward.
Therefore I will stretch out My hand against you and destroy you;
(L)I am [b]weary of relenting!
And I will winnow them with a winnowing fan in the gates of the land;
I will (M)bereave them of children;
I will destroy My people,
Since they (N)do not return from their ways.
Their widows will be increased to Me more than the sand of the seas;
I will bring against them,
Against the mother of the young men,
A plunderer at noonday;
I will cause anguish and terror to fall on them (O)suddenly.

“She(P) languishes who has borne seven;
She has breathed her last;
(Q)Her sun has gone down
While it was yet day;
She has been ashamed and confounded.
And the remnant of them I will deliver to the sword
Before their enemies,” says the Lord.

Jeremiah’s Dejection

10 (R)Woe is me, my mother,
That you have borne me,
A man of strife and a man of contention to the whole [c]earth!
I have neither lent for interest,
Nor have men lent to me for interest.
Every one of them curses me.

11 The Lord said:

“Surely it will be well with your remnant;
Surely I will cause (S)the enemy to intercede with you
In the time of adversity and in the time of affliction.
12 Can anyone break iron,
The northern iron and the bronze?
13 Your wealth and your treasures
I will give as (T)plunder without price,
Because of all your sins,
Throughout your territories.
14 And I will [d]make you cross over with your enemies
(U)Into a land which you do not know;
For a (V)fire is kindled in My anger,
Which shall burn upon you.”

15 O Lord, (W)You know;
Remember me and [e]visit me,
And (X)take vengeance for me on my persecutors.
In Your enduring patience, do not take me away.
Know that (Y)for Your sake I have suffered rebuke.
16 Your words were found, and I (Z)ate them,
And (AA)Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart;
For I am called by Your name,
O Lord God of hosts.
17 (AB)I did not sit in the assembly of the mockers,
Nor did I rejoice;
I sat alone because of Your hand,
For You have filled me with indignation.
18 Why is my (AC)pain perpetual
And my wound incurable,
Which refuses to be healed?
Will You surely be to me (AD)like an unreliable stream,
As waters that [f]fail?

The Lord Reassures Jeremiah

19 Therefore thus says the Lord:

(AE)“If you return,
Then I will bring you back;
You shall (AF)stand before Me;
If you (AG)take out the precious from the vile,
You shall be as My mouth.
Let them return to you,
But you must not return to them.
20 And I will make you to this people a fortified bronze (AH)wall;
And they will fight against you,
But (AI)they shall not prevail against you;
For I am with you to save you
And deliver you,” says the Lord.
21 “I will deliver you from the hand of the wicked,
And I will redeem you from the grip of the terrible.”

Jeremiah’s Lifestyle and Message

16 The word of the Lord also came to me, saying, “You shall not take a wife, nor shall you have sons or daughters in this place.” For thus says the Lord concerning the sons and daughters who are born in this place, and concerning their mothers who bore them and their fathers who begot them in this land: “They shall die (AJ)gruesome deaths; they shall not be (AK)lamented nor shall they be (AL)buried, but they shall be (AM)like refuse on the face of the earth. They shall be consumed by the sword and by famine, and their (AN)corpses shall be meat for the birds of heaven and for the beasts of the earth.”

For thus says the Lord: (AO)“Do not enter the house of mourning, nor go to lament or bemoan them; for I have taken away My peace from this people,” says the Lord, “lovingkindness and mercies. Both the great and the small shall die in this land. They shall not be buried; (AP)neither shall men lament for them, (AQ)cut themselves, nor (AR)make themselves bald for them. Nor shall men break bread in mourning for them, to comfort them for the dead; nor shall men give them the cup of consolation to (AS)drink for their father or their mother. Also you shall not go into the house of feasting to sit with them, to eat and drink.”

For thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “Behold, (AT)I will cause to cease from this place, before your eyes and in your days, the voice of [g]mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride.

10 “And it shall be, when you show this people all these words, and they say to you, (AU)‘Why has the Lord pronounced all this great disaster against us? Or what is our iniquity? Or what is our sin that we have committed against the Lord our God?’ 11 then you shall say to them, (AV)‘Because your fathers have forsaken Me,’ says the Lord; ‘they have walked after other gods and have served them and worshiped them, and have forsaken Me and not kept My law. 12 And you have done (AW)worse than your fathers, for behold, (AX)each one [h]follows the dictates of his own evil heart, so that no one listens to Me. 13 (AY)Therefore I will cast you out of this land (AZ)into a land that you do not know, neither you nor your fathers; and there you shall serve other gods day and night, where I will not show you favor.’

God Will Restore Israel(BA)

14 “Therefore behold, the (BB)days are coming,” says the Lord, “that it shall no more be said, ‘The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of Egypt,’ 15 but, ‘The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of the (BC)north and from all the lands where He had driven them.’ For (BD)I will bring them back into their land which I gave to their fathers.

16 “Behold, I will send for many (BE)fishermen,” says the Lord, “and they shall fish them; and afterward I will send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain and every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks. 17 For My (BF)eyes are on all their ways; they are not hidden from My face, nor is their iniquity hidden from My eyes. 18 And first I will repay (BG)double for their iniquity and their sin, because (BH)they have defiled My land; they have filled My inheritance with the carcasses of their detestable and abominable idols.”

19 O Lord, (BI)my strength and my fortress,
(BJ)My refuge in the day of affliction,
The Gentiles shall come to You
From the ends of the earth and say,
“Surely our fathers have inherited lies,
Worthlessness and (BK)unprofitable things.
20 Will a man make gods for himself,
(BL)Which are not gods?

21 “Therefore behold, I will this once cause them to know,
I will cause them to know
My hand and My might;
And they shall know that (BM)My name is the Lord.

Judah’s Sin and Punishment

17 “The sin of Judah is (BN)written with a (BO)pen of iron;
With the point of a diamond it is (BP)engraved
On the tablet of their heart,
And on the horns of your altars,
While their children remember
Their altars and their (BQ)wooden[i] images
By the green trees on the high hills.
O My mountain in the field,
I will give as plunder your wealth, all your treasures,
And your high places of sin within all your borders.
And you, even yourself,
Shall let go of your heritage which I gave you;
And I will cause you to serve your enemies
In (BR)the land which you do not know;
For (BS)you have kindled a fire in My anger which shall burn forever.”

Thus says the Lord:

(BT)“Cursed is the man who trusts in man
And makes (BU)flesh his [j]strength,
Whose heart departs from the Lord.
For he shall be (BV)like a shrub in the desert,
And (BW)shall not see when good comes,
But shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness,
(BX)In a salt land which is not inhabited.

“Blessed(BY) is the man who trusts in the Lord,
And whose hope is the Lord.
For he shall be (BZ)like a tree planted by the waters,
Which spreads out its roots by the river,
And will not [k]fear when heat comes;
But its leaf will be green,
And will not be anxious in the year of drought,
Nor will cease from yielding fruit.

“The (CA)heart is deceitful above all things,
And [l]desperately wicked;
Who can know it?
10 I, the Lord, (CB)search the heart,
I test the [m]mind,
(CC)Even to give every man according to his ways,
According to the fruit of his doings.

11 As a partridge that [n]broods but does not hatch,
So is he who gets riches, but not by right;
It (CD)will leave him in the midst of his days,
And at his end he will be (CE)a fool.”

12 A glorious high throne from the beginning
Is the place of our sanctuary.
13 O Lord, (CF)the hope of Israel,
(CG)All who forsake You shall be ashamed.

“Those who depart from Me
Shall be (CH)written in the earth,
Because they have forsaken the Lord,
The (CI)fountain of living waters.”

Jeremiah Prays for Deliverance

14 Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed;
Save me, and I shall be saved,
For (CJ)You are my praise.
15 Indeed they say to me,
(CK)“Where is the word of the Lord?
Let it come now!”
16 As for me, (CL)I have not hurried away from being a shepherd who follows You,
Nor have I desired the woeful day;
You know what came out of my lips;
It was right there before You.
17 Do not be a terror to me;
(CM)You are my hope in the day of doom.
18 (CN)Let them be ashamed who persecute me,
But (CO)do not let me be put to shame;
Let them be dismayed,
But do not let me be dismayed.
Bring on them the day of doom,
And (CP)destroy[o] them with double destruction!

Hallow the Sabbath Day

19 Thus the Lord said to me: “Go and stand in the gate of the children of the people, by which the kings of Judah come in and by which they go out, and in all the gates of Jerusalem; 20 and say to them, (CQ)‘Hear the word of the Lord, you kings of Judah, and all Judah, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, who enter by these gates. 21 Thus says the Lord: (CR)“Take heed to yourselves, and bear no burden on the Sabbath day, nor bring it in by the gates of Jerusalem; 22 nor carry a burden out of your houses on the Sabbath day, nor do any work, but hallow the Sabbath day, as I (CS)commanded your fathers. 23 (CT)But they did not obey nor incline their ear, but [p]made their neck stiff, that they might not hear nor receive instruction.

24 “And it shall be, (CU)if you heed Me carefully,” says the Lord, “to bring no burden through the gates of this city on the (CV)Sabbath day, but hallow the Sabbath day, to do no work in it, 25 (CW)then shall enter the gates of this city kings and princes sitting on the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, they and their princes, accompanied by the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and this city shall remain forever. 26 And they shall come from the cities of Judah and from (CX)the places around Jerusalem, from the land of Benjamin and from (CY)the [q]lowland, from the mountains and from (CZ)the [r]South, bringing burnt offerings and sacrifices, grain offerings and incense, bringing (DA)sacrifices of praise to the house of the Lord.

27 “But if you will not heed Me to hallow the Sabbath day, such as not carrying a burden when entering the gates of Jerusalem on the Sabbath day, then (DB)I will kindle a fire in its gates, (DC)and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem, and it shall not be (DD)quenched.” ’ ”

The Potter and the Clay

18 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying: “Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause you to hear My words.” Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something at the [s]wheel. And the vessel that he [t]made of clay was [u]marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make.

Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: “O house of Israel, (DE)can I not do with you as this potter?” says the Lord. “Look, (DF)as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel! The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to (DG)pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, (DH)if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, (DI)I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it. And the instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it, 10 if it does evil in My sight so that it does not obey My voice, then I will relent concerning the good with which I said I would benefit it.

11 “Now therefore, speak to the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord: “Behold, I am fashioning a disaster and devising a plan against you. (DJ)Return now every one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings (DK)good.” ’ ”

God’s Warning Rejected

12 And they said, (DL)“That is hopeless! So we will walk according to our own plans, and we will every one [v]obey the (DM)dictates[w] of his evil heart.”

13 Therefore thus says the Lord:

(DN)“Ask now among the Gentiles,
Who has heard such things?
The virgin of Israel has done (DO)a very horrible thing.
14 Will a man [x]leave the snow water of Lebanon,
Which comes from the rock of the field?
Will the cold flowing waters be forsaken for strange waters?

15 “Because My people have forgotten (DP)Me,
They have burned incense to worthless idols.
And they have caused themselves to stumble in their ways,
From the (DQ)ancient paths,
To walk in pathways and not on a highway,
16 To make their land (DR)desolate and a perpetual (DS)hissing;
Everyone who passes by it will be astonished
And shake his head.
17 (DT)I will scatter them (DU)as with an east wind before the enemy;
(DV)I will [y]show them the back and not the face
In the day of their calamity.”

Jeremiah Persecuted

18 Then they said, (DW)“Come and let us devise plans against Jeremiah; (DX)for the law shall not perish from the priest, nor counsel from the wise, nor the word from the prophet. Come and let us attack him with the tongue, and let us not give heed to any of his words.”

19 Give heed to me, O Lord,
And listen to the voice of those who contend with me!
20 (DY)Shall evil be repaid for good?
For they have (DZ)dug a pit for my life.
Remember that I (EA)stood before You
To speak good [z]for them,
To turn away Your wrath from them.
21 Therefore (EB)deliver up their children to the famine,
And pour out their blood
By the force of the sword;
Let their wives become widows
And (EC)bereaved of their children.
Let their men be put to death,
Their young men be slain
By the sword in battle.
22 Let a cry be heard from their houses,
When You bring a troop suddenly upon them;
For they have dug a pit to take me,
And hidden snares for my feet.
23 Yet, Lord, You know all their counsel
Which is against me, to slay me.
(ED)Provide no atonement for their iniquity,
Nor blot out their sin from Your sight;
But let them be overthrown before You.
Deal thus with them
In the time of Your (EE)anger.


  1. Jeremiah 15:1 Lit. soul was not toward
  2. Jeremiah 15:6 tired
  3. Jeremiah 15:10 Or land
  4. Jeremiah 15:14 So with MT, Vg.; LXX, Syr., Tg. cause you to serve (cf. 17:4)
  5. Jeremiah 15:15 attend to
  6. Jeremiah 15:18 Or cannot be trusted
  7. Jeremiah 16:9 rejoicing
  8. Jeremiah 16:12 walks after the stubbornness or imagination
  9. Jeremiah 17:2 Heb. Asherim, Canaanite deities
  10. Jeremiah 17:5 Lit. arm
  11. Jeremiah 17:8 Qr., Tg. see
  12. Jeremiah 17:9 Or incurably sick
  13. Jeremiah 17:10 Most secret parts, lit. kidneys
  14. Jeremiah 17:11 Sits on eggs
  15. Jeremiah 17:18 Lit. crush
  16. Jeremiah 17:23 Were stubborn
  17. Jeremiah 17:26 Heb. shephelah
  18. Jeremiah 17:26 Heb. Negev
  19. Jeremiah 18:3 Potter’s wheel
  20. Jeremiah 18:4 was making
  21. Jeremiah 18:4 ruined
  22. Jeremiah 18:12 Lit. do
  23. Jeremiah 18:12 stubbornness or imagination
  24. Jeremiah 18:14 forsake
  25. Jeremiah 18:17 So with LXX, Syr., Tg., Vg.; MT look them in
  26. Jeremiah 18:20 concerning

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