For behold, the days are coming during which they will say, Blessed (happy, fortunate, and to be envied) are the barren, and the wombs that have not borne, and the breasts that have never nursed [babies]!
[L For look/T behold] The ·time is [days are] coming when people will say, ‘Blessed are ·the women who cannot have children [L the barren women and the wombs that never gave birth] and ·who have no babies to nurse [L the breasts that have never nursed].’
A huge crowd of people followed him, including women who wrung their hands and wept for him. But Jesus turned to them and said, “Women of Jerusalem, do not shed your tears for me, but for yourselves and for your children! For the days are coming when men will say, ‘Lucky are the women who are childless—the bodies which have never borne, and the breasts which have never given nourishment.’ Then men will begin ‘to say to the mountains, Fall on us! and to the hills, Cover us!’ For if this is what men do when the wood is green, what will they do when it is seasoned?”
As they led him off, they made Simon, a man from Cyrene who happened to be coming in from the countryside, carry the cross behind Jesus. A huge crowd of people followed, along with women weeping and carrying on. At one point Jesus turned to the women and said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, don’t cry for me. Cry for yourselves and for your children. The time is coming when they’ll say, ‘Lucky the women who never conceived! Lucky the wombs that never gave birth! Lucky the breasts that never gave milk!’ Then they’ll start calling to the mountains, ‘Fall down on us!’ calling to the hills, ‘Cover us up!’ If people do these things to a live, green tree, can you imagine what they’ll do with deadwood?”
For the day is coming when it will not be the women with children who are blessed but the childless. Then you will say, ‘The barren women are the most fortunate! Those who have never given birth and never nursed a child—they are more fortunate than we are, for they will never see their children put to death!’
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