Jeremiah 3Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
3 “If a man divorces his wife and she goes and marries someone else,
“Judah, you say that,
The Two Bad Sisters: Israel and Judah
6 The Lord spoke to me during the time King Josiah was ruling the nation of Judah. He said, “Jeremiah, you saw the bad things Israel[b] did! You saw how she was unfaithful to me. She was unfaithful to me with every idol on every hill and under every green tree. 7 I said to myself, ‘Israel will come back to me after she has finished doing these evil things.’ But she did not come back to me. And Israel’s unfaithful sister, Judah, saw what she did. 8 Israel was unfaithful, and she knew why I sent her away. Israel knew that I divorced her because she committed the sin of adultery. But that did not make her unfaithful sister afraid. Judah was not afraid. She also went out and acted like a prostitute. 9 Judah did not care that she was acting like a prostitute. So she made her country ‘dirty.’ She committed the sin of adultery by worshiping idols made out of stone and wood. 10 Israel’s unfaithful sister did not come back to me with her whole heart. She only pretended that she came back to me.” This message is from the Lord.
11 The Lord said to me, “Israel was not faithful to me, but she had a better excuse than unfaithful Judah. 12 Jeremiah, look toward the north and speak this message:
“‘Come back, you faithless people of Israel.’
14 The Lord says, “You people are unfaithful, but come back to me because I am your master. I will take one person from every city and two people from every family and bring you to Zion. 15 Then I will give you new rulers who will be faithful to me. They will lead you with knowledge and understanding. 16 In those days there will be many of you in the land.” This message is from the Lord.
“At that time people will never again say, ‘I remember the days when we had the Box of the Lord’s Agreement.’ They will not even think about the Holy Box anymore. They will not even remember or miss it. They will never make another Holy Box. 17 At that time the city of Jerusalem will be called the ‘Lord’s Throne.’ All nations will come together in the city of Jerusalem to give honor to the name of the Lord. They will not follow their stubborn, evil hearts anymore. 18 In those days the family of Judah will join the family of Israel. They will come together from a land in the north to the land I gave to their ancestors.”
19-20 This message is from the Lord:
“I want to treat you like my own children.
22 “People of Israel, you are unfaithful to me, but come back to me.
“Just say, ‘Yes, we will come back,