1 The words of Jeremiah, the son of Hilkiah, one aof the priests who were in bAnathoth in the land of Benjamin, 2 to whom the word of the Lord came in the days of cJosiah the son of Amon, king of Judah, in dthe thirteenth year of his reign. 3 It came also in the days of eJehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, and funtil the end of the eleventh year of gZedekiah, the son of Josiah, king of Judah, huntil the captivity of Jerusalem in the fifth month.
5 i“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
and before you were born jI consecrated you;
I appointed you a prophet kto the nations.”
and nwhatever I command you, you shall speak.
8 oDo not be afraid of them,
pfor I am with you to deliver you,
“Behold, I have put smy words in your mouth.
10 See, I have set you this day kover nations and over kingdoms,
tto pluck up and to break down,
11 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, u“Jeremiah, what do you see?” And I said, “I see an almond1 branch.” 12 Then the Lord said to me, “You have seen well, for I am watching over my word to perform it.”
13 The word of the Lord came to me a second time, saying, “What do you see?” And I said, “I see va boiling pot, facing away wfrom the north.” 14 Then the Lord said to me, w“Out of the north disaster2 shall be let loose upon all the inhabitants of the land. 15 For behold, xI am calling all the tribes of the kingdoms of the north, declares the Lord, yand they shall come, and every one shall set his throne at the entrance of the gates of Jerusalem, against all its walls all around and against all the cities of Judah. 16 And zI will declare my judgments against them, for all their evil ain forsaking me. bThey have made offerings to other gods and cworshiped the works of their own hands. 17 But you, ddress yourself for work;3 arise, and esay to them everything that I command you. fDo not be dismayed by them, lest I dismay you before them. 18 And I, behold, I make you this day ga fortified city, han iron pillar, and ibronze walls, against the whole land, against the kings of Judah, its officials, its priests, and the people of the land. 19 iThey will fight against you, but they shall not prevail against you, for jI am with you, declares the Lord, to deliver you.”
“I remember the devotion of kyour youth,
your love las a bride,
mhow you followed me in the wilderness,
nin a land not sown.
3 oIsrael was holy to the Lord,
pthe firstfruits of his harvest.
qAll who ate of it incurred guilt;
r“What wrong did your fathers find in me
6 They did not say, u‘Where is the Lord
who led us vin the wilderness,
7 wAnd I brought you into a plentiful land
But when you came in, xyou defiled my land
yThose who handle the law did not know me;
athe prophets prophesied by Baal
and went after bthings that do not profit.
9 “Therefore cI still contend with you,
and dwith your children's children I will contend.
10 For cross to the coasts of eCyprus and see,
or send to fKedar and examine with care;
11 gHas a nation changed its gods,
heven though they are no gods?
But my people ihave changed their glory
for bthat which does not profit.
12 Be appalled, jO heavens, at this;
the fountain of mliving waters,
14 n“Is Israel a slave? Is he a homeborn servant?
15 oThe lions have roared against him;
his cities are in ruins, pwithout inhabitant.
17 tHave you not brought this upon yourself
when uhe led you in the way?
18 vAnd now what do you gain by going to Egypt
to drink the waters of wthe Nile?
xOr what do you gain by going to Assyria
19 zYour evil will chastise you,
and ayour apostasy will reprove you.
Know and see that it is evil and bbitter
for cyou to forsake the Lord your God;
20 “For long ago I dbroke your yoke
but you said, e‘I will not serve.’
Yes, fon every high hill
you bowed down glike a whore.
21 hYet I planted you a choice vine,
iHow then have you turned degenerate
jthe stain of your guilt is still before me,
23 kHow can you say, ‘I am not unclean,
Look at your way lin the valley;
24 ma wild donkey used to the wilderness,
25 Keep nyour feet from going unshod
and oyour throat from thirst.
pfor I have loved foreigners,
qthey, their kings, their officials,
But rin the time of their trouble they say,
28 But swhere are your gods
Let them arise, tif they can save you,
for uas many as your cities
30 In vain have I vstruck your children;
wyour own sword devoured your prophets
32 xCan a virgin forget her ornaments,
Yet ymy people have forgotten me
zthe lifeblood of the guiltless poor;
you did not find them abreaking in.
bBehold, I will bring you to judgment
for csaying, ‘I have not sinned.’
36 dHow much you go about,
You shall be eput to shame by Egypt
with fyour hands on your head,
hWould not that land be greatly polluted?
iYou have played the whore with many lovers;
2 Lift up your eyes to jthe bare heights, and see!
kBy the waysides you have sat awaiting lovers
hYou have polluted the land
3 lTherefore the showers have been withheld,
yet you have mthe forehead of a whore;
4 Have you not just now ncalled to me,
5 owill he be angry forever,
6 The Lord said to me in the days of pKing Josiah: “Have you seen what she did, that faithless one, Israel, qhow she went up on every high hill and under every green tree, and there iplayed the whore? 7 And I thought, ‘After she has done all this she will return to me,’ but she did not return, and her treacherous rsister Judah saw it. 8 She saw that for all the adulteries of that faithless one, Israel, sI had sent her away with ta decree of divorce. uYet her treacherous sister Judah did not fear, but she too went iand played the whore. 9 Because she took her whoredom lightly, she polluted the land, committing adultery with vstone and tree. 10 Yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah did not return to me wwith her whole heart, but in pretense, declares the Lord.”
z“‘Return, faithless Israel,
for aI am merciful,
bI will not be angry forever.
13 cOnly acknowledge your guilt,
and scattered your favors among foreigners under devery green tree,
14 eReturn, O faithless children,
ffor I am your master;
15 “‘And gI will give you shepherds after my own heart, hwho will feed you with knowledge and understanding. 16 And when you have multiplied and been fruitful in the land, in those days, declares the Lord, they shall no more say, “The ark of the covenant of the Lord.” It shall not come to mind or be remembered or missed; it shall not be made again. 17 At that time Jerusalem shall be called the throne of the Lord, iand all nations shall gather to it, jto the presence of the Lord in Jerusalem, and they shall no more stubbornly follow their own evil heart. 18 kIn those days the house of Judah shall join the house of Israel, and together they shall come from the land lof the north to mthe land that I gave your fathers for a heritage.
And I thought you would ncall me, My Father,
20 oSurely, as a treacherous wife leaves her husband,
21 A voice on the pbare heights is heard,
qthe weeping and pleading of Israel's sons
22 r“Return, O faithless sons;
sI will heal your faithlessness.”
23 Truly tthe hills are a delusion,
the orgies8 on the mountains.
uTruly in the Lord our God
24 “But from our youth the shameful thing has devoured all for which our fathers labored, their flocks and their herds, their sons and their daughters. 25 vLet us lie down in our shame, and let our dishonor cover us. For wwe have sinned against the Lord our God, we and our fathers, from our youth even to this day, and we have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God.”