1 "Run to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem; See now and know; And seek in her open places If you can find a man, If there is [anyone] who executes judgment, Who seeks the truth, And I will pardon her.
2 Though they say, '[As] the LORD lives,' Surely they swear falsely."
3 O LORD, [are] not Your eyes on the truth? You have stricken them, But they have not grieved; You have consumed them, But they have refused to receive correction. They have made their faces harder than rock; They have refused to return.
4 Therefore I said, "Surely these [are] poor. They are foolish; For they do not know the way of the LORD, The judgment of their God.
5 I will go to the great men and speak to them, For they have known the way of the LORD, The judgment of their God." But these have altogether broken the yoke [And] burst the bonds.
6 Therefore a lion from the forest shall slay them, A wolf of the deserts shall destroy them; A leopard will watch over their cities. Everyone who goes out from there shall be torn in pieces, Because their transgressions are many; Their backslidings have increased.
7 " How shall I pardon you for this? Your children have forsaken Me And sworn by [those that are] not gods. When I had fed them to the full, Then they committed adultery And assembled themselves by troops in the harlots' houses.
8 They were [like] well-fed lusty stallions; Every one neighed after his neighbor's wife.
9 Shall I not punish [them] for these [things?"] says the LORD. "And shall I not avenge Myself on such a nation as this?
10 " Go up on her walls and destroy, But do not make a complete end. Take away her branches, For they [are] not the LORD's.
11 For the house of Israel and the house of Judah Have dealt very treacherously with Me," says the LORD.
12 They have lied about the LORD, And said, "[It is] not He. Neither will evil come upon us, Nor shall we see sword or famine.
13 And the prophets become wind, For the word [is] not in them. Thus shall it be done to them."
14 Therefore thus says the LORD God of hosts: "Because you speak this word, Behold, I will make My words in your mouth fire, And this people wood, And it shall devour them.
15 Behold, I will bring a nation against you from afar, O house of Israel," says the LORD. "It [is] a mighty nation, It [is] an ancient nation, A nation whose language you do not know, Nor can you understand what they say.
16 Their quiver [is] like an open tomb; They [are] all mighty men.
17 And they shall eat up your harvest and your bread, [Which] your sons and daughters should eat. They shall eat up your flocks and your herds; They shall eat up your vines and your fig trees; They shall destroy your fortified cities, In which you trust, with the sword.
18 " Nevertheless in those days," says the LORD, "I will not make a complete end of you.
19 "And it will be when you say, 'Why does the LORD our God do all these [things] to us?' then you shall answer them, 'Just as you have forsaken Me and served foreign gods in your land, so you shall serve aliens in a land [that is] not yours.'
20 " Declare this in the house of Jacob And proclaim it in Judah, saying,
21 'Hear this now, O foolish people, Without understanding, Who have eyes and see not, And who have ears and hear not:
22 Do you not fear Me?' says the LORD. 'Will you not tremble at My presence, Who have placed the sand as the bound of the sea, By a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass beyond it? And though its waves toss to and fro, Yet they cannot prevail; Though they roar, yet they cannot pass over it.
23 But this people has a defiant and rebellious heart; They have revolted and departed.
24 They do not say in their heart, "Let us now fear the LORD our God, Who gives rain, both the former and the latter, in its season. He reserves for us the appointed weeks of the harvest."
25 Your iniquities have turned these [things] away, And your sins have withheld good from you.
26 'For among My people are found wicked [men;] They lie in wait as one who sets snares; They set a trap; They catch men.
27 As a cage is full of birds, So their houses [are] full of deceit. Therefore they have become great and grown rich.
28 They have grown fat, they are sleek; Yes, they surpass the deeds of the wicked; They do not plead the cause, The cause of the fatherless; Yet they prosper, And the right of the needy they do not defend.
29 Shall I not punish [them] for these [things?'] says the LORD. 'Shall I not avenge Myself on such a nation as this?'
30 " An astonishing and horrible thing Has been committed in the land:
31 The prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests rule by their [own] power; And My people love [to have it] so. But what will you do in the end?
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