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Jeremiah 7-8Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

This word came to Yirmeyahu from Adonai: “Stand at the gate of the house of Adonai and proclaim this word: ‘Listen to the word of Adonai, all you from Y’hudah who enter these gates to worship Adonai! Here is what Adonai-Tzva’ot, the God of Isra’el, says: “Improve your ways and actions, and I will let you stay in this place. Don’t rely on that deceitful slogan, ‘The temple of Adonai, the temple of Adonai these [buildings] are the temple of Adonai.’ No, but if you really improve your ways and actions; if you really administer justice between people; if you stop oppressing foreigners, orphans and widows; if you stop shedding innocent blood in this place; and if you stop following other gods, to your own harm; then I will let you stay in this place, in the land I gave to your ancestors forever and ever. Look! You are relying on deceitful words that can’t do you any good. First you steal, murder, commit adultery, swear falsely, offer to Ba‘al and go after other gods that you haven’t known. 10 Then you come and stand before me in this house that bears my name and say, ‘We are saved’ — so that you can go on doing these abominations! 11 Do you regard this house, which bears my name, as a cave for bandits? I can see for myself what’s going on,” says Adonai. 12 “Go to the place in Shiloh that used to be mine, that used to bear my name, and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of my people Isra’el. 13 I spoke to you again and again, but you wouldn’t listen. I called you, but you wouldn’t answer. Now,” says Adonai, “because you have done all these things, 14 I will do to the house that bears my name, on which you rely, and to the place I gave you and your ancestors, what I did to Shiloh; 15 and I will drive you out of my presence, just as I drove out all your kinsmen, all the descendants of Efrayim.”’

16 “So you, [Yirmeyahu,] don’t pray for this people! Don’t cry, pray or intercede on their behalf with me; because I won’t listen to you. 17 Don’t you see what they are doing in the cities of Y’hudah and in the streets of Yerushalayim? 18 The children gather the wood, the fathers light the fire, and the women knead the dough to make cakes for the queen of heaven; and, just to provoke me, they pour out drink offerings to other gods! 19 Are they really provoking me,” asks Adonai, “or are they provoking themselves, to their own ruin?”

20 Therefore, here is what Adonai Elohim says: “My anger and fury will be poured out on this place, on men, animals, trees in the fields and produce growing from the ground; and it will burn without being quenched.”

21 Thus says Adonai-Tzva’ot, the God of Isra’el: “You may as well eat the meat of your burnt offerings along with that of your sacrifices. 22 For I didn’t speak to your ancestors or give them orders concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices when I brought them out of the land of Egypt. 23 Rather, what I did order them was this: ‘Pay attention to what I say. Then I will be your God, and you will be my people. In everything, live according to the way that I order you, so that things will go well for you.’ 24 But they neither listened nor paid attention, but lived according to their own plans, in the stubbornness of their evil hearts, thus going backward and not forward. 25 You have done this from the day your ancestors came out of Egypt until today. Even though I sent you all my servants the prophets, sending them time after time, 26 they would not listen or pay attention to me, but stiffened their necks; they did worse than their ancestors. 27 So tell them all this; but they won’t listen to you; likewise, call to them; but they won’t answer you. 28 Therefore, say to them,

‘This is the nation that has not listened
to the voice of Adonai their God.
They won’t take correction; faithfulness has perished;
it has vanished from their mouths.

29 Cut off your hair, and throw it away,
take up a lament on the bare hills,
for Adonai has rejected and abandoned
the generation that rouses his anger.’

30 “For the people of Y’hudah have done what is evil from my perspective,” says Adonai; “they have set up their detestable things in the house which bears my name, to defile it. 31 They have built the high places of Tofet in the Ben-Hinnom Valley, to burn their sons and daughters in the fire, something I never ordered; in fact, such a thing never even entered my mind! 32 Therefore, the days are coming,” says Adonai, “when it will no longer be called either Tofet or the Ben-Hinnom Valley, but the Valley of Slaughter — they will put the dead in Tofet, because there will be no space left [anywhere else]. 33 The corpses of this people will become food for the birds in the air and the wild animals; no one will frighten them away. 34 Then in the cities of Y’hudah and the streets of Yerushalayim I will silence the sounds of joy and gladness and the voices of bridegroom and bride; because the land will be reduced to ruins.

“At that time,” says Adonai, “[these enemies] will remove the bones of the kings of Y’hudah, the bones of his princes, the bones of the cohanim, the bones of the prophets and the bones of the inhabitants of Yerushalayim from their graves. They will spread them out, exposed to the sun, the moon and the entire army of heaven, whom they loved, served, walked after, sought after and worshipped. The bones will not be collected or reburied but will be left lying on the ground like dung. All the survivors of this evil family who remain wherever I have driven them will prefer death to life,” says Adonai-Tzva’ot. “You are to tell them that Adonai says:

‘If a person falls, doesn’t he get up again?
If someone goes astray, doesn’t he turn back?
Why do these people keep backsliding?
Why is their backsliding so persistent?
They cling to deceit and refuse to return!
I listened attentively but they spoke nothing right.
No one repents of his wickedness,
saying, “What have I done!”
Each runs off in his own direction,
like a horse plunging headlong into battle.
Storks in the sky know their seasons;
doves, swallows and cranes their migration times;
but my people do not know
the rulings of Adonai!

“‘How can you say, “We are wise;
Adonai’s Torah is with us,”
when in fact the lying pen of the scribes
has turned it into falsehood?
The wise are put to shame,
alarmed, entrapped.
They have rejected the word of Adonai,
so what wisdom do they have?

10 “‘Therefore I will give their wives to others,
and their fields to those who take them over;
for from the least to the greatest,
all are greedy for gains;
prophets and cohanim alike
all practice fraud —
11 they dress the wound of the daughter of my people,
but only superficially,
saying, “There is perfect shalom,”
when there is no shalom.
12 They should be ashamed
of their detestable deeds,
but they are not ashamed at all,
they don’t know how to blush.
So when others fall, they too will fall;
when I punish them, they will stumble,’

says Adonai.

13 “‘I will put an end to them,’ says Adonai.
‘There are no grapes on the vine,
and no figs on the fig tree;
the leaf has withered; and what I have given them
will pass from their possession.’”

14 “Why are we sitting still? Assemble!
Let’s enter the fortified cities
and meet our doom there!
For Adonai our God has doomed us;
he has given us bitter water to drink,
because we have sinned against Adonai.
15 When we look for peace, nothing good comes;
when we seek a time of healing, instead there is terror.”

16 From Dan can be heard the snorting of his horses;
when his stallions neigh, the whole land trembles.
For they come devouring the land and all in it,
the city and those who dwell there.
17 “Yes, now I am sending snakes among you,
vipers that no one can charm,
and they will bite you,” says Adonai.

18 My grief has no cure, I am sick at heart.
19 Listen to my people’s cry of distress
out of a distant land:
“Is Adonai no longer in Tziyon?
Is her king no longer there?”

“Why do they provoke me with their idols
and their futile foreign gods?”

20 “The harvest has passed, the summer is over,
and still we are not saved.”

21 The daughter of my people is broken,
and it’s tearing me to pieces;
everything looks dark to me,
horror seizes me.
22 Has Gil‘ad exhausted its healing resin?
Is no physician there?
If there is, then why is the daughter of my people
so slow to recover her health?
23 (9:1) I wish my head were made of water
and my eyes were a fountain of tears,
so that I could cry day and night
over the slain of the daughter of my people!

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

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