Add parallel Print Page Options

The Utter Corruption of God’s People

Run to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem,
    look around and take note!
Search its squares and see
    if you can find one person
who acts justly
    and seeks truth—
so that I may pardon Jerusalem.[a]
Although they say, ‘As the Lord lives’,
    yet they swear falsely.
O Lord, do your eyes not look for truth?
You have struck them,
    but they felt no anguish;
you have consumed them,
    but they refused to take correction.
They have made their faces harder than rock;
    they have refused to turn back.

Then I said, ‘These are only the poor,
    they have no sense;
for they do not know the way of the Lord,
    the law of their God.
Let me go to the rich[b]
    and speak to them;
surely they know the way of the Lord,
    the law of their God.’
But they all alike had broken the yoke,
    they had burst the bonds.

Therefore a lion from the forest shall kill them,
    a wolf from the desert shall destroy them.
A leopard is watching against their cities;
    everyone who goes out of them shall be torn in pieces—
because their transgressions are many,
    their apostasies are great.

How can I pardon you?
    Your children have forsaken me,
    and have sworn by those who are no gods.
When I fed them to the full,
    they committed adultery
    and trooped to the houses of prostitutes.
They were well-fed lusty stallions,
    each neighing for his neighbour’s wife.
Shall I not punish them for these things?
says the Lord;
    and shall I not bring retribution
    on a nation such as this?

10 Go up through her vine-rows and destroy,
    but do not make a full end;
strip away her branches,
    for they are not the Lord’s.
11 For the house of Israel and the house of Judah
    have been utterly faithless to me,
says the Lord.
12 They have spoken falsely of the Lord,
    and have said, ‘He will do nothing.
No evil will come upon us,
    and we shall not see sword or famine.’
13 The prophets are nothing but wind,
    for the word is not in them.
Thus shall it be done to them!

14 Therefore thus says the Lord, the God of hosts:
Because they[c] have spoken this word,
I am now making my words in your mouth a fire,
    and this people wood, and the fire shall devour them.
15 I am going to bring upon you
    a nation from far away, O house of Israel,
says the Lord.
It is an enduring 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;
    all of them are mighty warriors.
17 They shall eat up your harvest and your food;
    they shall eat up your sons and your daughters;
they shall eat up your flocks and your herds;
    they shall eat up your vines and your fig trees;
they shall destroy with the sword
    your fortified cities in which you trust.

18 But even in those days, says the Lord, I will not make a full end of you. 19 And when your people say, ‘Why has the Lord our God done all these things to us?’ you shall say to them, ‘As you have forsaken me and served foreign gods in your land, so you shall serve strangers in a land that is not yours.’

20 Declare this in the house of Jacob,
    proclaim it in Judah:
21 Hear this, O foolish and senseless people,
    who have eyes, but do not see,
    who have ears, but do not hear.
22 Do you not fear me? says the Lord;
    Do you not tremble before me?
I placed the sand as a boundary for the sea,
    a perpetual barrier that it cannot pass;
though the waves toss, they cannot prevail,
    though they roar, they cannot pass over it.
23 But this people has a stubborn and rebellious heart;
    they have turned aside and gone away.
24 They do not say in their hearts,
    ‘Let us fear the Lord our God,
who gives the rain in its season,
    the autumn rain and the spring rain,
and keeps for us
    the weeks appointed for the harvest.’
25 Your iniquities have turned these away,
    and your sins have deprived you of good.
26 For scoundrels are found among my people;
    they take over the goods of others.
Like fowlers they set a trap;[d]
    they catch human beings.
27 Like a cage full of birds,
    their houses are full of treachery;
therefore they have become great and rich,
28     they have grown fat and sleek.
They know no limits in deeds of wickedness;
    they do not judge with justice
the cause of the orphan, to make it prosper,
    and they do not defend the rights of the needy.
29 Shall I not punish them for these things?
says the Lord,
    and shall I not bring retribution
    on a nation such as this?

30 An appalling and horrible thing
    has happened in the land:
31 the prophets prophesy falsely,
    and the priests rule as the prophets direct;[e]
my people love to have it so,
    but what will you do when the end comes?

Footnotes

  1. Jeremiah 5:1 Heb it
  2. Jeremiah 5:5 Or the great
  3. Jeremiah 5:14 Heb you
  4. Jeremiah 5:26 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  5. Jeremiah 5:31 Or rule by their own authority

Not One Is Upright

“Go up and down(A) the streets of Jerusalem,
    look around and consider,(B)
    search through her squares.
If you can find but one person(C)
    who deals honestly(D) and seeks the truth,
    I will forgive(E) this city.
Although they say, ‘As surely as the Lord lives,’(F)
    still they are swearing falsely.(G)

Lord, do not your eyes(H) look for truth?
    You struck(I) them, but they felt no pain;
    you crushed them, but they refused correction.(J)
They made their faces harder than stone(K)
    and refused to repent.(L)
I thought, “These are only the poor;
    they are foolish,(M)
for they do not know(N) the way of the Lord,
    the requirements of their God.
So I will go to the leaders(O)
    and speak to them;
surely they know the way of the Lord,
    the requirements of their God.”
But with one accord they too had broken off the yoke
    and torn off the bonds.(P)
Therefore a lion from the forest(Q) will attack them,
    a wolf from the desert will ravage(R) them,
a leopard(S) will lie in wait near their towns
    to tear to pieces any who venture out,
for their rebellion is great
    and their backslidings many.(T)

“Why should I forgive you?
    Your children have forsaken me
    and sworn(U) by gods that are not gods.(V)
I supplied all their needs,
    yet they committed adultery(W)
    and thronged to the houses of prostitutes.(X)
They are well-fed, lusty stallions,
    each neighing for another man’s wife.(Y)
Should I not punish them for this?”(Z)
    declares the Lord.
“Should I not avenge(AA) myself
    on such a nation as this?

10 “Go through her vineyards and ravage them,
    but do not destroy them completely.(AB)
Strip off her branches,
    for these people do not belong to the Lord.
11 The people of Israel and the people of Judah
    have been utterly unfaithful(AC) to me,”
declares the Lord.

12 They have lied(AD) about the Lord;
    they said, “He will do nothing!
No harm will come to us;(AE)
    we will never see sword or famine.(AF)
13 The prophets(AG) are but wind(AH)
    and the word is not in them;
    so let what they say be done to them.”

14 Therefore this is what the Lord God Almighty says:

“Because the people have spoken these words,
    I will make my words in your mouth(AI) a fire(AJ)
    and these people the wood it consumes.(AK)
15 People of Israel,” declares the Lord,
    “I am bringing a distant nation(AL) against you—
an ancient and enduring nation,
    a people whose language(AM) you do not know,
    whose speech you do not understand.
16 Their quivers(AN) are like an open grave;
    all of them are mighty warriors.
17 They will devour(AO) your harvests and food,
    devour(AP) your sons and daughters;
they will devour(AQ) your flocks and herds,
    devour your vines and fig trees.(AR)
With the sword(AS) they will destroy
    the fortified cities(AT) in which you trust.(AU)

18 “Yet even in those days,” declares the Lord, “I will not destroy(AV) you completely. 19 And when the people ask,(AW) ‘Why has the Lord our God done all this to us?’ you will tell them, ‘As you have forsaken me and served foreign gods(AX) in your own land, so now you will serve foreigners(AY) in a land not your own.’

20 “Announce this to the descendants of Jacob
    and proclaim(AZ) it in Judah:
21 Hear this, you foolish and senseless people,(BA)
    who have eyes(BB) but do not see,
    who have ears but do not hear:(BC)
22 Should you not fear(BD) me?” declares the Lord.
    “Should you not tremble(BE) in my presence?
I made the sand a boundary for the sea,(BF)
    an everlasting barrier it cannot cross.
The waves may roll, but they cannot prevail;
    they may roar,(BG) but they cannot cross it.
23 But these people have stubborn and rebellious(BH) hearts;
    they have turned aside(BI) and gone away.
24 They do not say to themselves,
    ‘Let us fear(BJ) the Lord our God,
who gives autumn and spring rains(BK) in season,
    who assures us of the regular weeks of harvest.’(BL)
25 Your wrongdoings have kept these away;
    your sins have deprived you of good.(BM)

26 “Among my people are the wicked(BN)
    who lie in wait(BO) like men who snare birds
    and like those who set traps(BP) to catch people.
27 Like cages full of birds,
    their houses are full of deceit;(BQ)
they have become rich(BR) and powerful
28     and have grown fat(BS) and sleek.
Their evil deeds have no limit;
    they do not seek justice.
They do not promote the case of the fatherless;(BT)
    they do not defend the just cause of the poor.(BU)
29 Should I not punish them for this?”
    declares the Lord.
“Should I not avenge(BV) myself
    on such a nation as this?

30 “A horrible(BW) and shocking thing
    has happened in the land:
31 The prophets prophesy lies,(BX)
    the priests(BY) rule by their own authority,
and my people love it this way.
    But what will you do in the end?(BZ)

Bible Gateway Sponsors