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Woe to the Worthless Shepherd

11 Open your doors, O Lebanon,
That a (A)fire may consume your (B)cedars.
Wail, O [a]cypress, for the cedar has fallen,
Because the mighty trees have been destroyed;
Wail, O oaks of Bashan,
For the [b]impenetrable forest has come down.
There is a sound of the shepherds’ (C)wail,
For their might is destroyed;
There is a (D)sound of the young lions’ roar,
For the [c]pride of the Jordan is destroyed.

Thus says Yahweh my God, “Shepherd the flock doomed to (E)slaughter. Those who buy them slaughter them and are not (F)held guilty, and each of those who sell them says, ‘Blessed be Yahweh. Indeed, (G)I have become rich!’ And their (H)own shepherds do not spare them. For I will (I)no longer spare the inhabitants of the land,” declares Yahweh; “but behold, I will (J)cause the men to [d]fall, each into another’s hand and into the hand of his king; and they will crush the land, and I will (K)not deliver them from their hand.”

So I (L)shepherded the flock doomed to slaughter—[e]hence the (M)afflicted of the flock. And I took for myself two (N)staffs: the one I called [f](O)Favor, and the other I called [g](P)Union; so I shepherded the flock. Then I annihilated the three shepherds in (Q)one month, for my soul was impatient with them, and their soul also [h]was weary of me. Then I said, “I will not shepherd you. What is to (R)die, [i]let it die, and what is to be annihilated, [j]let it be annihilated; and [k]let those who remain consume one another’s flesh.” 10 And I took my staff [l](S)Favor and cut it in pieces, to [m](T)break my covenant which I had cut with all the peoples. 11 So it was [n]broken on that day, and [o]thus the (U)afflicted of the flock who were watching me knew that it was the word of Yahweh. 12 And I said to them, “If it is good in your sight, give me my (V)wages; but if not, [p]never mind!” So they weighed out (W)thirty [q]shekels of silver as my wages. 13 Then Yahweh said to me, “Throw it to the (X)potter, that valuable price at which I was valued by them.” So I took the thirty shekels of silver and threw them to the potter in the house of Yahweh. 14 Then I cut in pieces my second staff [r](Y)Union, to (Z)break the brotherhood between Judah and Israel.

15 Then Yahweh said to me, “Take again for yourself the equipment of a [s](AA)foolish shepherd. 16 For behold, I am going to raise up a shepherd in the land who will (AB)not care for those who face annihilation, seek the young, heal the broken, or sustain the one standing, but will (AC)consume the flesh of the fat sheep and tear off their hoofs.

17 (AD)Woe to the worthless shepherd
Who forsakes the flock!
A (AE)sword will be on his arm
And on his right eye!
His (AF)arm will be totally dried up,
And his right eye will be utterly dimmed.”


  1. Zechariah 11:2 Or juniper
  2. Zechariah 11:2 Or forest of the vintage
  3. Zechariah 11:3 Or jungle
  4. Zechariah 11:6 Lit find
  5. Zechariah 11:7 Or for the sheep dealers
  6. Zechariah 11:7 Or Pleasantness
  7. Zechariah 11:7 Or Cords
  8. Zechariah 11:8 Or detested
  9. Zechariah 11:9 Or will die
  10. Zechariah 11:9 Or will be annihilated
  11. Zechariah 11:9 Or those...will eat
  12. Zechariah 11:10 Or Pleasantness
  13. Zechariah 11:10 Or annul
  14. Zechariah 11:11 Or annulled
  15. Zechariah 11:11 Or the sheep dealers who
  16. Zechariah 11:12 Lit cease
  17. Zechariah 11:12 A shekel was approx. 0.4 oz. or 11 gm
  18. Zechariah 11:14 Or Cords
  19. Zechariah 11:15 Lit ignorant foolish