Jeremiah Grieves for His People

18 My joy is gone; grief is upon me;[a]
    (A)my heart is sick within me.
19 Behold, the cry of the daughter of my people
    from (B)the length and breadth of the land:
“Is the Lord not in Zion?
    (C)Is her King not in her?”
(D)“Why have they provoked me to anger with their carved images
    and with their foreign idols?”
20 “The harvest is past, the summer is ended,
    and we are not saved.”
21 For the wound of (E)the daughter of my people is my heart wounded;
    (F)I mourn, and dismay has taken hold on me.

22 Is there no (G)balm in Gilead?
    Is there no physician there?
Why then has the health of the daughter of my people
    not been restored?
[b] (H)Oh that my head were waters,
    and my eyes a fountain of tears,
that I might weep day and night
    for the slain of (I)the daughter of my people!
[c] Oh that I had in the desert
    a travelers' lodging place,
that I might leave my people
    and go away from them!
For they are all (J)adulterers,
    a company of (K)treacherous men.
(L)They bend their tongue like a bow;
    falsehood and not truth has grown strong[d] in the land;
for they proceed from evil to evil,
    (M)and they do not know me, declares the Lord.

(N)Let everyone beware of his neighbor,
    and put no trust in any brother,
for every (O)brother is a deceiver,
    and every neighbor (P)goes about as a slanderer.
Everyone deceives his neighbor,
    and no one speaks the truth;
they have taught their tongue to speak lies;
    they weary themselves committing iniquity.
Heaping oppression upon oppression, and deceit upon deceit,
    (Q)they refuse to know me, declares the Lord.

Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts:
“Behold, (R)I will refine them and (S)test them,
    for what else can I do, (T)because of my people?
(U)Their tongue is a deadly arrow;
    (V)it speaks deceitfully;
with his mouth (W)each speaks peace to his neighbor,
    but in his heart (X)he plans an ambush for him.
(Y)Shall I not punish them for these things? declares the Lord,
    and shall I not avenge myself
    on a nation such as this?

10 “I will take up weeping and wailing for the mountains,
    and a lamentation for (Z)the pastures of the wilderness,
(AA)because they are laid waste so that no one passes through,
    and the lowing of cattle is not heard;
(AB)both the birds of the air and the beasts
    have fled and are gone.
11 (AC)I will make Jerusalem a heap of ruins,
    (AD)a lair of jackals,
(AE)and I will make the cities of Judah a desolation,
    without inhabitant.”

12 (AF)Who is the man so wise that he can understand this? To whom has the mouth of the Lord spoken, that he may declare it? Why is the land ruined (AG)and laid waste like a wilderness, so that no one passes through?

Footnotes

  1. Jeremiah 8:18 Compare Septuagint; the meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain
  2. Jeremiah 9:1 Ch 8:23 in Hebrew
  3. Jeremiah 9:2 Ch 9:1 in Hebrew
  4. Jeremiah 9:3 Septuagint; Hebrew and not for truth they have grown strong

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