Jeremiah 9
NET Bible

1 I wish that my head were a well full of water

and my eyes were a fountain full of tears!

If they were, I could cry day and night

for those of my dear people who have been killed.

2 I wish I had a lodging place in the desert

where I could spend some time like a weary traveler.

Then I would desert my people

and walk away from them

because they are all unfaithful to God,

a congregation of people that has been disloyal to him.

The Lord Laments That He Has No Choice But to Judge Them

3The Lord says,

“These people are like soldiers who have readied their bows.

Their tongues are always ready to shoot out lies.

They have become powerful in the land,

but they have not done so by honest means.

Indeed, they do one evil thing after another

and do not pay attention to me.

4Everyone must be on his guard around his friends.

He must not even trust any of his relatives.

For every one of them will find some way to cheat him.

And all of his friends will tell lies about him.

5One friend deceives another

and no one tells the truth.

These people have trained themselves to tell lies.

They do wrong and are unable to repent.

6They do one act of violence after another,

and one deceitful thing after another.

They refuse to pay attention to me,”

says the Lord.

7Therefore the Lord who rules over all says,

“I will now purify them in the fires of affliction and test them.

The wickedness of my dear people has left me no choice.

What else can I do?

8Their tongues are like deadly arrows.

They are always telling lies.

Friendly words for their neighbors come from their mouths.

But their minds are thinking up ways to trap them.

9I will certainly punish them for doing such things!” says the Lord.

“I will certainly bring retribution on such a nation as this!”

The Coming Destruction Calls For Mourning

10I said,

“I will weep and mourn for the grasslands on the mountains,

I will sing a mournful song for the pastures in the wilderness

because they are so scorched no one travels through them.

The sound of livestock is no longer heard there.

Even the birds in the sky and the wild animals in the fields

have fled and are gone.”

11The Lord said,

“I will make Jerusalem a heap of ruins.

Jackals will make their home there.

I will destroy the towns of Judah

so that no one will be able to live in them.”

12I said,

“Who is wise enough to understand why this has happened?

Who has a word from the Lord that can explain it?

Why does the land lie in ruins?

Why is it as scorched as a desert through which no one travels?”

13The Lord answered, “This has happened because these people have rejected my laws which I gave them. They have not obeyed me or followed those laws. 14Instead they have followed the stubborn inclinations of their own hearts. They have paid allegiance to the gods called Baal, as their fathers taught them to do. 15So then, listen to what I, the Lord God of Israel who rules over all, say. ‘I will make these people eat the bitter food of suffering and drink the poison water of judgment. 16I will scatter them among nations that neither they nor their ancestors have known anything about. I will send people chasing after them with swords until I have destroyed them.’”

17The Lord who rules over all told me to say to this people,

“Take note of what I say.

Call for the women who mourn for the dead!

Summon those who are the most skilled at it!”

18I said, “Indeed, let them come quickly and sing a song of mourning for us.

Let them wail loudly until tears stream from our own eyes

and our eyelids overflow with water.

19For the sound of wailing is soon to be heard in Zion.

They will wail, ‘We are utterly ruined! We are completely disgraced!

For our houses have been torn down

and we must leave our land.’”

20I said,

“So now, you wailing women, hear what the Lord says.

Open your ears to the words from his mouth.

Teach your daughters this mournful song,

and each of you teach your neighbor this lament.

21‘Death has climbed in through our windows.

It has entered into our fortified houses.

It has taken away our children who play in the streets.

It has taken away our young men who gather in the city squares.’

22Tell your daughters and neighbors, ‘The Lord says,

“The dead bodies of people will lie scattered everywhere

like manure scattered on a field.

They will lie scattered on the ground

like grain that has been cut down but has not been gathered.”’”

23The Lord says,

“Wise people should not boast that they are wise.

Powerful people should not boast that they are powerful.

Rich people should not boast that they are rich.

24If people want to boast, they should boast about this:

They should boast that they understand and know me.

They should boast that they know and understand

that I, the Lord, act out of faithfulness, fairness, and justice in the earth

and that I desire people to do these things,”

says the Lord.

25The Lord says, “Watch out! The time is soon coming when I will punish all those who are circumcised only in the flesh. 26That is, I will punish the Egyptians, the Judeans, the Edomites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, and all the desert people who cut their hair short at the temples. I will do so because none of the people of those nations are really circumcised in the Lord’s sight. Moreover, none of the people of Israel are circumcised when it comes to their hearts.”

Jeremiah 8
Top of Page
Top of Page