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22 This is what the Lord says: Go to the palace of the king of Judah, and speak this message there: 2 “Listen to the Lord’s word, you officials, you people who come into these gates, and you, king of Judah, the one sitting on David’s throne.
3 “This is what the Lord says: Judge fairly, and do what is right. Rescue those who have been robbed from those who oppress them. Don’t mistreat foreigners, orphans, or widows, and don’t oppress them. Don’t kill innocent people in this place. 4 If you do what I say, then the kings who sit on David’s throne will ride through the gates of this palace in chariots and on horses along with their officials and their people. 5 But if you don’t do what I say, I will take an oath on myself,” declares the Lord, “that this palace will become a pile of rubble.
6 “This is what the Lord says about the palace of the king of Judah:
This palace is like Gilead to me,
like the top of Lebanon.
I will certainly turn it into a desert,
into cities that no one lives in.
7 I will send people to destroy you.
They will have their own weapons.
They will cut down your finest cedar trees
and throw them on a fire.
8 “People from many nations will pass by this city and ask each other, ‘Why has the Lord done this to this important city?’ 9 The answer will be: ‘They rejected the promise[a] of the Lord their God. They worshiped other gods and served them.’”
10 Don’t cry for the dead.
Don’t shake your heads at them.
Cry bitterly for those who are taken away,
because they won’t come back to see their homeland.
11 This is what the Lord says about King Josiah’s son Shallum, who succeeded his father as king of Judah and left this place: He will never come back here again. 12 He will die in the place where he was taken captive, and he will never see this land again.
13 “How horrible it will be for the person who builds his house dishonestly
and his upper rooms through injustice.
He makes his neighbors work for nothing
and doesn’t pay them for their work.
14 He says, ‘I will build a large house for myself with big upper rooms.’
He cuts out windows in it,
panels the rooms with cedar,
and paints them red.
15 Do you think you’re a better king than others
because you use more cedar?
Your father ate and drank and did what is fair and right.
Everything went well for him.
16 He defended the cause of the poor and needy.
Everything went well for him.
Isn’t this what it means to know me?” asks the Lord.
17 “But your eyes and your mind are set on nothing but dishonest profits.
You kill innocent people and violently oppress your people.”
18 This is what the Lord says about Jehoiakim, son of Judah’s King Josiah:
People won’t mourn for him and say,
“How horrible it is for my brother and sister!”
They won’t mourn for him and say,
“How horrible it is for my master and his splendor!”
19 He will receive a donkey’s burial.
He will be dragged off and thrown outside the gates of Jerusalem.
20 “Go to Lebanon and cry! Raise your voice in Bashan!
Cry out from Abarim, because all your lovers are defeated.”
21 I spoke to you when you were prosperous,
but you said that you wouldn’t listen.
This is how you’ve been ever since you were young.
You don’t listen to me.
22 The wind will blow away all your shepherds,
and your lovers will go into captivity.
Then you will be ashamed and disgraced by all your wickedness.
23 You live in Lebanon and have your nest in the cedars.
But you will groan when pain strikes you,
pain like a woman giving birth to a child.
24 “As I live,” declares the Lord, “even though you, Jehoiakin,[b] son of Judah’s King Jehoiakim, are the signet ring on my right hand, I will pull you off my hand. 25 I will hand you over to those who want to kill you, those you fear—King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon and the Babylonians. 26 I will throw you and your mother into another land. You weren’t born there, but you will die there. 27 You will want to return to this land, but you won’t be allowed to come home.”
28 This Jehoiakin is like a rejected and broken pot that no one wants.
Is that why he and his descendants will be thrown out
and cast into another land they’ve never heard of?
29 O land, land, land!
Listen to the Lord’s word.
30 This is what the Lord says:
Write this about Jehoiakin: He will be childless.
He won’t prosper in his lifetime.
None of his descendants will succeed him as king.
They won’t sit on David’s throne and rule Judah again.
23 “How horrible it will be for the shepherds who are destroying and scattering the sheep in my care,” declares the Lord. 2 “This is what I, the Lord God of Israel, said to the shepherds who take care of my people: You have scattered my sheep and chased them away. You have not taken care of them, so now I will take care of you by punishing you for the evil you have done,” declares the Lord.
3 “Then I will gather the remaining part of my flock from all the countries where I chased them. I will bring them back to their pasture, and they will be fertile and increase in number. 4 I will put shepherds over them. Those shepherds will take care of them. My sheep will no longer be afraid or terrified, and not one of them will be missing,” declares the Lord.
5 “The days are coming,” declares the Lord,
“when I will grow a righteous branch for David.
He will be a king who will rule wisely.
He will do what is fair and right in the land.
6 In his lifetime, Judah will be saved,
and Israel will live in safety.
This is the name that he will be given:
The Lord is our righteousness.
7 “That is why the days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when people’s oaths will no longer be, ‘The Lord brought the people of Israel out of Egypt. As the Lord lives. . . .’ 8 Instead, their oaths will be, ‘The Lord brought the descendants of the nation of Israel out of the land of the north and all the lands where he[c] had scattered them. As the Lord lives. . . .’ At that time they will live in their own land.
9 “Say this about the prophets:
I am deeply disturbed.
All my bones tremble.
I am like a drunk,
like a person who has had too much wine,
because of the Lord and his holy words.
10 The land is filled with adulterers.
The land mourns because of the curse.
Pastures in the wilderness have dried up.
The people are evil,
and they use their strength to do the wrong things.
11 The prophets and priests are godless.
Even in my temple I’ve found them doing evil,” declares the Lord.
12 “That is why their own way will become
like slippery paths in the dark.
They will be chased away, and they will fall down in the dark.
I will bring disaster on them.
It is time for them to be punished,” declares the Lord.
13 “Say this about the prophets of Samaria:
I saw something disgusting.
The prophets of Samaria prophesied by Baal
and led my people Israel astray.
14 “Say this about the prophets of Jerusalem:
I see something horrible.
The prophets of Jerusalem commit adultery and live a lie.
They support those who do evil
so that no one turns back from his wickedness.
They are all like Sodom to me,
and those who live in Jerusalem are like Gomorrah.”
15 This is what the Lord of Armies says about the prophets:
I will give them wormwood to eat and poison to drink.
The prophets of Jerusalem have spread godlessness
throughout the land.
16 This is what the Lord of Armies says:
Don’t listen to what the prophets are saying to you.
They fill you with false hope.
They speak about visions that they dreamed up.
These visions are not from the Lord.
17 They keep saying to those who despise me,
“The Lord says, ‘Everything will go well for you.’”
They tell all who live by their own stubborn ways,
“Nothing bad will happen to you.”
18 Who is in the Lord’s inner circle
and sees and hears his word?
Who pays attention and listens to his word?
19 The storm of the Lord will come with his anger.
Like a windstorm, it will swirl down on the heads of the wicked.
20 The anger of the Lord will not turn back
until he has done everything he intends to do.
In the last days you will understand this clearly.
1 From Paul, Silas, and Timothy.
To the church at Thessalonica united with God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Good will[a] and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ are yours!
3 We always have to thank God for you, brothers and sisters. It’s right to do this because your faith is showing remarkable growth and your love for each other is increasing. 4 That’s why we brag in God’s churches about your endurance and faith in all the persecutions and suffering you are experiencing. 5 Your suffering proves that God’s judgment is right and that you are considered worthy of his kingdom.
6 Certainly, it is right for God to give suffering to those who cause you to suffer. 7 It is also right for God to give all of us relief from our suffering. He will do this when the Lord Jesus is revealed, coming from heaven with his mighty angels in a blazing fire. 8 He will take revenge on those who refuse to acknowledge God and on those who refuse to respond to the Good News about our Lord Jesus. 9 They will pay the penalty by being destroyed forever, by being separated from the Lord’s presence and from his glorious power. 10 This will happen on that day when he comes to be honored among all his holy people and admired by all who have believed in him. This includes you because you believed the testimony we gave you.
11 With this in mind, we always pray that our God will make you worthy of his call. We also pray that through his power he will help you accomplish every good desire and help you do everything your faith produces. 12 That way the name of our Lord Jesus will be honored among you. Then, because of the good will of Jesus Christ, our God and Lord, you will be honored by him.
1 O God, do not remain silent.
Do not turn a deaf ear to me.
Do not keep quiet, O God.
2 Look, your enemies are in an uproar.
Those who hate you hold their heads high.
3 They make plans in secret against your people
and plot together against those you treasure.
4 They say, “Let’s wipe out their nation
so that the name of Israel will no longer be remembered.”
5 They agree completely on their plan.
They form an alliance against you:
6 the tents from Edom and Ishmael,
Moab and Hagar,
7 Gebal, Ammon, and Amalek,
Philistia, along with those who live in Tyre.
8 Even Assyria has joined them.
They helped the descendants of Lot. Selah
9 Do to them what you did to Midian,
to Sisera and Jabin at the Kishon River.
10 They were destroyed at Endor.
They became manure to fertilize the ground.
11 Treat their influential people as you treated Oreb and Zeeb.
Treat all their leaders like Zebah and Zalmunna.
12 They said, “Let’s take God’s pasturelands for ourselves.”
13 O my God, blow them away like tumbleweeds,[a]
like husks in the wind.
14 Pursue them with your storms,
and terrify them with your windstorms
15 the way fire burns a forest
and flames set mountains on fire.[b]
16 Let their faces blush with shame, O Lord,
so that they must look to you for help.
17 Let them be put to shame and terrified forever.
Let them die in disgrace
18 so that they must acknowledge you.
Your name is the Lord.
You alone are the Most High God of the whole earth.
11 Like golden apples in silver settings,
so is a word spoken at the right time.
12 Like a gold ring and a fine gold ornament,
so is constructive criticism to the ear of one who listens.
13 Like the coolness of snow on a harvest day,
so is a trustworthy messenger to those who send him:
He refreshes his masters.
14 Like a dense fog or a dust storm,
so is a person who brags about a gift that he does not give.