Jeremiah's Complaint and God's Answer
12 1 Righteous art thou, O Jehovah, when I contend with thee; yet would I reason the cause with thee: wherefore doth the way of the wicked prosper? wherefore are all they at ease that deal very treacherously? 2 Thou hast planted them, yea, they have taken root; they grow, yea, they bring forth fruit: thou art near in their mouth, and far from their heart. 3 But thou, O Jehovah, knowest me; thou seest me, and triest my heart toward thee: pull them out like sheep for the slaughter, and prepare them for the day of slaughter. 4 How long shall the land mourn, and the herbs of the whole country wither? for the wickedness of them that dwell therein, the beasts are consumed, and the birds; because they said, He shall not see our latter end. 5 If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? and though in a land of peace thou art secure, yet how wilt thou do in the pride of the Jordan? 6 For even thy brethren, and the house of thy father, even they have dealt treacherously with thee; even they have cried aloud after thee: believe them not, though they speak fair words unto thee.
7 I have forsaken my house, I have cast off my heritage; I have given the dearly beloved of my soul into the hand of her enemies. 8 My heritage is become unto me as a lion in the forest: she hath uttered her voice against me; therefore I have hated her. 9 Is my heritage unto me as a speckled bird of prey? are the birds of prey against her round about? go ye, assemble all the beasts of the field, bring them to devour. 10 Many shepherds have destroyed my vineyard, they have trodden my portion under foot, they have made my pleasant portion a desolate wilderness. 11 They have made it a desolation; it mourneth unto me, being desolate; the whole land is made desolate, because no man layeth it to heart. 12 Destroyers are come upon all the bare heights in the wilderness; for the sword of Jehovah devoureth from the one end of the land even to the other end of the land: no flesh hath peace. 13 They have sown wheat, and have reaped thorns; they have put themselves to pain, and profit nothing: and ye shall be ashamed of your fruits, because of the fierce anger of Jehovah.
14 Thus saith Jehovah against all mine evil neighbors, that touch the inheritance which I have caused my people Israel to inherit: behold, I will pluck them up from off their land, and will pluck up the house of Judah from among them. 15 And it shall come to pass, after that I have plucked them up, I will return and have compassion on them; and I will bring them again, every man to his heritage, and every man to his land. 16 And it shall come to pass, if they will diligently learn the ways of my people, to swear by my name, As Jehovah liveth; even as they taught my people to swear by Baal; then shall they be built up in the midst of my people. 17 But if they will not hear, then will I pluck up that nation, plucking up and destroying it, saith Jehovah.
The Lesson from the Marred Girdle
13 1 Thus saith Jehovah unto me, Go, and buy thee a linen girdle, and put it upon thy loins, and put it not in water. 2 So I bought a girdle according to the word of Jehovah, and put it upon my loins. 3 And the word of Jehovah came unto me the second time, saying, 4 Take the girdle that thou hast bought, which is upon thy loins, and arise, go to the Euphrates, and hide it there in a cleft of the rock. 5 So I went, and hid it by the Euphrates, as Jehovah commanded me. 6 And it came to pass after many days, that Jehovah said unto me, Arise, go to the Euphrates, and take the girdle from thence, which I commanded thee to hide there. 7 Then I went to the Euphrates, and digged, and took the girdle from the place where I had hid it; and, behold, the girdle was marred, it was profitable for nothing. 8 Then the word of Jehovah came unto me, saying, 9 Thus saith Jehovah, After this manner will I mar the pride of Judah, and the great pride of Jerusalem. 10 This evil people, that refuse to hear my words, that walk in the stubbornness of their heart, and are gone after other gods to serve them, and to worship them, shall even be as this girdle, which is profitable for nothing. 11 For as the girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah, saith Jehovah; that they may be unto me for a people, and for a name, and for a praise, and for a glory: but they would not hear.
The Lesson from the Filled Bottles
12 Therefore thou shalt speak unto them this word: Thus saith Jehovah, the God of Israel, Every bottle shall be filled with wine: and they shall say unto thee, Do we not certainly know that every bottle shall be filled with wine? 13 Then shalt thou say unto them, Thus saith Jehovah, Behold, I will fill all the inhabitants of this land, even the kings that sit upon David's throne, and the priests, and the prophets, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, with drunkenness. 14 And I will dash them one against another, even the fathers and the sons together, saith Jehovah: I will not pity, nor spare, nor have compassion, that I should not destroy them.
Captivity Threatened for Judah's Impenitence
15 Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud; for Jehovah hath spoken. 16 Give glory to Jehovah your God, before he cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and, while ye look for light, he turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness. 17 But if ye will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret for [your] pride; and mine eye shall weep sore, and run down with tears, because Jehovah's flock is taken captive. 18 Say thou unto the king and to the queen-mother, Humble yourselves, sit down; for your headtires are come down, even the crown of your glory. 19 The cities of the South are shut up, and there is none to open them: Judah is carried away captive, all of it; it is wholly carried away captive. 20 Lift up your eyes, and behold them that come from the north: where is the flock that was given thee, thy beautiful flock? 21 What wilt thou say, when he shall set over thee as head those whom thou hast thyself taught to be friends to thee? shall not sorrows take hold of thee, as of a woman in travail?
22 And if thou say in thy heart, Wherefore are these things come upon me? for the greatness of thine iniquity are thy skirts uncovered, and thy heels suffer violence. 23 Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil. 24 Therefore will I scatter them, as the stubble that passeth away, by the wind of the wilderness. 25 This is thy lot, the portion measured unto thee from me, saith Jehovah; because thou hast forgotten me, and trusted in falsehood. 26 Therefore will I also uncover thy skirts upon thy face, and thy shame shall appear. 27 I have seen thine abominations, even thine adulteries, and thy neighings, the lewdness of thy whoredom, on the hills in the field. Woe unto thee, O Jerusalem! thou wilt not be made clean; how long shall it yet be?
The Message about the Drought
14 1 The word of Jehovah that came to Jeremiah concerning the drought. 2 Judah mourneth, and the gates thereof languish, they sit in black upon the ground; and the cry of Jerusalem is gone up. 3 And their nobles send their little ones to the waters: they come to the cisterns, and find no water; they return with their vessels empty; they are put to shame and confounded, and cover their heads. 4 Because of the ground which is cracked, for that no rain hath been in the land, the plowmen are put to shame, they cover their heads. 5 Yea, the hind also in the field calveth, and forsaketh [her young], because there is no grass. 6 And the wild asses stand on the bare heights, they pant for air like jackals; their eyes fail, because there is no herbage. 7 Though our iniquities testify against us, work thou for thy name's sake, O Jehovah; for our backslidings are many; we have sinned against thee. 8 O thou hope of Israel, the Saviour thereof in the time of trouble, why shouldest thou be as a sojourner in the land, and as a wayfaring man that turneth aside to tarry for a night? 9 Why shouldest thou be as a man affrighted, as a mighty man that cannot save? yet thou, O Jehovah, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy name; leave us not.
10 Thus saith Jehovah unto this people, Even so have they loved to wander; they have not refrained their feet: therefore Jehovah doth not accept them; now will he remember their iniquity, and visit their sins. 11 And Jehovah said unto me, Pray not for this people for [their] good. 12 When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt-offering and meal-offering, I will not accept them; but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence. 13 Then said I, Ah, Lord Jehovah! behold, the prophets say unto them, Ye shall not see the sword, neither shall ye have famine; but I will give you assured peace in this place. 14 Then Jehovah said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name; I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake I unto them: they prophesy unto you a lying vision, and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their own heart. 15 Therefore thus saith Jehovah concerning the prophets that prophesy in my name, and I sent them not, yet they say, Sword and famine shall not be in this land: By sword and famine shall those prophets be consumed. 16 And the people to whom they prophesy shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem because of the famine and the sword; and they shall have none to bury them—them, their wives, nor their sons, nor their daughters: for I will pour their wickedness upon them.
17 And thou shalt say this word unto them, Let mine eyes run down with tears night and day, and let them not cease; for the virgin daughter of my people is broken with a great breach, with a very grievous wound. 18 If I go forth into the field, then, behold, the slain with the sword! and if I enter into the city, then, behold, they that are sick with famine! for both the prophet and the priest go about in the land, and have no knowledge. 19 Hast thou utterly rejected Judah? hath thy soul loathed Zion? why hast thou smitten us, and there is no healing for us? We looked for peace, but no good came; and for a time of healing, and, behold, dismay! 20 We acknowledge, O Jehovah, our wickedness, and the iniquity of our fathers; for we have sinned against thee. 21 Do not abhor [us], for thy name's sake; do not disgrace the throne of thy glory: remember, break not thy covenant with us. 22 Are there any among the vanities of the nations that can cause rain? or can the heavens give showers? art not thou he, O Jehovah our God? therefore we will wait for thee; for thou hast made all these things.
1 1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus through the will of God, according to the promise of the life which is in Christ Jesus, 2 to Timothy, my beloved child: Grace, mercy, peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
Be Not Ashamed
3 I thank God, whom I serve from my forefathers in a pure conscience, how unceasing is my remembrance of thee in my supplications, night and day 4 longing to see thee, remembering thy tears, that I may be filled with joy; 5 having been reminded of the unfeigned faith that is in thee; which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and, I am persuaded, in thee also.
6 For which cause I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee through the laying on of my hands. 7 For God gave us not a spirit of fearfulness; but of power and love and discipline. 8 Be not ashamed therefore of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but suffer hardship with the gospel according to the power of God; 9 who saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before times eternal, 10 but hath now been manifested by the appearing of our Saviour Christ Jesus, who abolished death, and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, 11 whereunto I was appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher. 12 For which cause I suffer also these things: yet I am not ashamed; for I know him whom I have believed, and I am persuaded that he is able to guard that which I have committed unto him against that day. 13 Hold the pattern of sound words which thou hast heard from me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. 14 That good thing which was committed unto [thee] guard through the Holy Spirit which dwelleth in us.
15 This thou knowest, that all that are in Asia turned away from me; of whom are Phygelus and Hermogenes. 16 The Lord grant mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus: for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain; 17 but, when he was in Rome, he sought me diligently, and found me 18 (the Lord grant unto him to find mercy of the Lord in that day); and in how many things he ministered at Ephesus, thou knowest very well.