1And the word of the Lord was made to me, and said,
2Go thou, and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, and say, The Lord saith these things, I had mind on thee, and I had mercy on thee in thy young waxing age, and on the charity of thy espousing, when thou followedest me in desert, in the land which is not sown. (Go thou, and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, and say, The Lord saith these things, I remembered thee, and I had mercy on thee in thy youth, and at the time of thy love in thy espousing, when thou followedest me in the wilderness, in the land which is not sown.)
3Israel was holy to the Lord, the first of fruits of him; men that devour that Israel, trespass; evils shall come on them, saith the Lord. (Israel was holy to the Lord, his first fruits; all who devour that Israel, trespass, or greatly sin; evils shall come upon them, saith the Lord.)
4The house of Jacob, and all the lineages of the house of Israel (and all the tribes of the house of Israel), hear ye the word of the Lord.
5The Lord saith these things, What of wickedness found your fathers in me, for they went far away from me, and went after vanity, and were made vain? (The Lord saith these things, What wickedness did your forefathers find in me? for they went far away from me, and went after what was empty and futile.)
6And they said not, Where is the Lord, that made us to go up from the land of Egypt, that led us over through desert, by the land unhabitable and without (a) way, by the land of thirst, and by the image of death, by the land in which a man went not, neither a man dwelled. (And they did not ask, Where is the Lord, who brought us up from the land of Egypt, who led us over through the wilderness, by the land that was uninhabited and without a way, by the land of thirst, and with portents of death, by the land in which no one went, nor in which anyone lived?)
7And I brought you into the land of Carmel, that ye should eat the fruit thereof, and the goods thereof; and ye entered, and defouled my land, and setted mine heritage into abomination. (And I brought you into a plentiful land, so that ye could enjoy its fruit, and its goodness; and ye entered, and defiled my land, and made my inheritance into an abomination.)
8Priests said not, Where is the Lord? and they that held the law, knew not me; and shepherds trespassed against me, and prophets prophesied in Baal, and followed idols. (The priests did not ask, Where is the Lord? yea, they who handled the Law, did not know me; and the shepherds of the people trespassed against me, and the prophets prophesied by Baal, and followed idols.)
9Therefore yet I shall strive with you in doom, saith the Lord, and I shall dispute with your sons. (And so I shall contend, or argue, with you in judgement, saith the Lord, and I shall dispute with your sons.)
10Go ye to the isles of Chittim, and see ye; and send ye into Kedar, and behold ye greatly (and send ye to Kedar, and greatly consider ye); and see ye, if such a thing is (ever) done,
11if a folk changed his gods; and certainly they be no gods; but my people changed his glory into an idol. (if a nation ever changed their gods? and certainly they be no gods; but my people exchanged their glory for an idol.)
12Heavens, be ye astonied on this thing, and, ye gates of heaven, be ye desolate greatly, saith the Lord. (Ye heavens, be ye astonished by this, and, ye gates of heaven, be ye greatly desolate, or in great despair, saith the Lord.)
13For why my people hath done twain evils; they have forsaken me, the well of quick water, and have digged to them cisterns, that were destroyed, that may not hold waters. (For my people have done two evils; they have deserted me, the well of living water, and they have dug for themselves cisterns, that were destroyed, or cracked, and so cannot hold any water.)
14Whether Israel is a bondman, either is born bond? Why therefore is he made into prey? (Is Israel a slave, or was he born into slavery? And so why is he made into prey, or into spoils?)
15Lions roared on him, and gave their voice; they have set the land of him into wilderness, the cities of him be burnt [up], and none there is that dwelleth in those. (The lions roared at him, and gave out their voice; they have turned his land into a wilderness, his cities be burned down, and there is no one who liveth in them.)
16Also the sons of Memphis and Tahpanhes have defouled thee, unto the top of the head.
17Whether this is not done to thee, for thou forsookest thy Lord God, in that time in which he led thee by the way? (Is this not done to thee, because thou hast deserted the Lord thy God, at that time when he led thee by the way?)
18And now what wilt thou to thee in the way of Egypt, that thou drink troubled water? And what is to thee with the way of Assyrians, that thou drink water of the flood? (And now what wilt thou do if thou go back to Egypt, shalt thou drink there the waters of Sihor, that is, of the Nile River? And what is for thee if thou go to Assyria, shalt thou drink there the waters of the Euphrates River?)
19Thy malice shall reprove thee, and thy turning away shall blame thee; know thou and see, that it is (an) evil and bitter (thing), that thou hast forsaken thy Lord God, and that his dread is not at thee, saith the Lord God of hosts. (Thy malice shall reproach thee, and thy turning away shall rebuke thee; know thou and see, that it is an evil and a bitter thing, that thou hast deserted the Lord thy God, and that the fear of me is not in thee/and that reverence for me is not in thee, saith the Lord God of hosts.)
20From the world thou hast broken my yoke, thou hast broken my bonds, and saidest, I shall not serve. For thou whore didest whoredom in each high little hill, and under each tree full of boughs. (Long ago thou hast broken thy yoke, and thou hast broken thy bonds, and saidest, I shall not serve thee. For thou whore didest whoredom on each high little hill, and under each tree full of branches.)
21Forsooth I planted thee a chosen vinery, all true seed; how therefore art thou, an alien vinery, turned to me into a shrewd thing? (Yet I planted thee like a choice vine, all of you the best seed; and so how art thou turned into such a depraved thing, yea, a strange vine, to me?)
22Though thou wash thee with fuller’s clay (Even if thou shalt wash thyself with fuller’s clay), and multipliest to thee the [cleansing] herb boreth, thou art (still) defouled in thy wickedness before me, saith the Lord God.
23How sayest thou, I am not defouled, I went not after Baalim? (How sayest thou, I am not defiled, and I did not go after the Baalim?) See thy ways in the great valley, know thou what thou hast done; a swift runner ordaining his ways.
24A wild ass accustomable in wilderness, drew the wind of his love in the desire of his soul; no man shall turn away it. All that seek it, shall not fail; they shall find it in the flux of unclean blood thereof. (Like a wild donkey accustomed to the wilderness, that drew up the scent of the lust that her soul desired; not one shall turn away from her. All that seek her, shall not fail to find her; they shall find her in the flowing of her unclean blood.)
25Forbid thy foot from nakedness, and thy throat from thirst; and thou saidest, I despaired, (for) I shall not do (that); for I loved burningly alien gods, and I shall go after them (for I have burningly loved these strange, or these foreign, gods, and I shall go after them).
26As a thief is shamed, when he is taken, so the house of Israel be shamed; they, and [the] kings of them, the princes, and priests, and the prophets of them, (Like a thief is shamed, when he is caught, so let the house of Israel be shamed; they, and their kings, and the princes, or the leaders, and the priests, and their prophets,)
27that say to a tree, Thou art my father; and to a stone, Thou hast engendered me. They turned to me the back, and not the face; and in the time of their torment they shall say, Rise thou, and deliver us. (who say to a piece of wood, Thou art my father; and to a stone, Thou hast begat me. They turned their backs on me/They turned their backs to me, and not their faces; yet in the time of their torment they shall say, Rise thou up, and save us!)
28Where be thy gods, which thou madest to thee? Rise they, and deliver thee in the time of thy torment; for after the number of thy cities were thy gods, thou Judah. (And then I shall say to them, Where be thy gods, which thou madest for thyselves? Let them rise up, and save thee in the time of thy torment; for the number of thy gods, O Judah, were as many as the number of thy cities.)
29What, will ye strive with me in doom? All ye have forsaken me, saith the Lord. (What, will ye contend, or will ye argue, with me in judgement? All of ye have deserted me, saith the Lord.)
30In vain I smote your sons, they received not chastising; your sword devoured your prophets, your generation is destroyed as a lion. (In vain I struck down your sons and daughters, for they would not receive their discipline, or their correction; your own sword devoured your prophets, like a destroying lion.)
31See ye the word of the Lord, whether I am made a wilderness to Israel, either a land late bringing forth fruit? Why therefore said my people, We have gone away, we shall no more come to thee? (See ye the word of the Lord, am I made like a wilderness to Israel, or like a land bringing forth late fruit? And so why did my people say, We have gone away, we shall no longer come to thee?)
32Whether a virgin shall forget her ornament? and a spousess her breast girdle? But my people hath forgotten me by days without number.
33What enforcest thou to show thy way good to seek love, which furthermore both hast taught thy malices thy ways, (How well thou endeavourest to find thy lovers, even the worst women can learn from thy ways!)
34and the blood of poor men and innocents is found in thy wings? I found not them in ditches, but in all things which I remembered before. (and the blood of the poor and the innocent is found on thy wings. Yea, it got there not from breaking into houses, but from sacrifices made under every tree.)
35And thou saidest, I am without sin and innocent; and therefore thy strong vengeance be turned away from me. Lo! I shall strive with thee in doom; for thou saidest, I sinned not. (And still thou saidest, I am without sin and innocent; and so let thy strong vengeance be turned away from me, O Lord. Lo! I shall contend, or shall argue, with thee in judgement; for thou saidest, I did not sin.)
36How vile art thou made, rehearsing thy ways? and thou shalt be shamed of Egypt, as thou were shamed of Assur. (How vile thou art made, changing thy ways! and thou shalt be shamed by Egypt, as thou were shamed by Assyria.)
37For why and thou shalt go out of this land, and thine hands shall be on thine head; for why the Lord hath all-broken thy trust, and thou shalt have nothing to prosperity. (And so thou shalt go out of this land, and thy hands shall be upon thy head; for the Lord hath all-broken those in whom thou trusted, and thou shalt get, or gain, nothing from them.)
Wycliffe’s Old Testament
Wycliffe’s New Testament
and JOHN PURVEY
A modern-spelling edition of their
14TH century Middle English translation,
the first complete English vernacular version,
with an Introduction by
TERENCE P. NOBLE
Used by Permission