1. “Run to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, and see now, and know, and seek in her open places, if you can find a man, if there is one who does justice, who seeks the truth; and I will pardon her.
2. And 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 destroyed 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, nor the judgment of their God.
5. I will go up for myself to the great men, and will speak to them; for they have known the way of the LORD and the judgment of their God.” But these had altogether broken the yoke and had torn off the bonds!
6. Therefore a lion out of the forest shall kill them, and a wolf of the deserts shall rob them; a leopard shall watch over their cities. Everyone who goes out from them shall be torn in pieces because their sins are many and their backslidings are multiplied.
7. “How shall I pardon you for this? Your children have forsaken Me, and have sworn by them that are not gods. When I had fed them to the full, then they committed adultery, and gathered themselves by troops in a harlot’s house.
8. They were like lusty, well-fed stallions in the morning; every one neighing after his neighbor’s wife.
9. Shall I not punish for these things?” says the LORD. “And shall not My soul be avenged on such a nation as this?
10. Go up upon her walls and destroy; but do not make a full 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 deceitfully against Me,” says the LORD.
12. They have lied against the LORD and said, “It is not He; neither shall evil come on us; nor shall we see sword nor famine.
13. And the prophets shall become as wind, for the word is not in them; thus it shall be done to them.”
14. Therefore thus says the LORD God of hosts, “Because you have spoken this word, behold, I will make My words in your mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them.
15. Lo, I will bring a nation upon 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 understand what they say.
16. Their quiver is as an open grave; they are all mighty men.
17. And they shall eat up your harvest and your bread, your sons and your daughters they shall eat up. They shall eat up your flocks and your herds; they shall eat up your vines and your fig trees. They shall beat down your fortified cities with the sword.
18. But even in those days,” says the LORD, “I will not make a complete end with you.
19. And it will be, when they shall ask, ‘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 strange gods in your land, so you shall serve strangers in a land that is not yours.’ ”
20. “Declare this in the house of Jacob, and cry it in Judah, saying,
21. ‘Now hear this, O foolish people and without understanding; who have eyes and see not; who have ears and hear not;
22. Do you not fear Me?’ says the LORD. ‘Will you not tremble at My presence, even I Who have placed the sand for the boundary of the sea by a never-ending decree, so that it cannot pass it? And though they toss themselves, yet they cannot prevail; though its waves roar, yet they cannot pass over it.
23. But this people has a revolting and a rebellious heart; they have revolted and are departed from Me.
24. And they do not say in their heart, “Let us now fear the LORD our God, Who gives both the former and the latter rain in its season; He reserves to us the appointed weeks of the harvest.”
25. Your iniquities have turned away these things, and your sins have withheld good things from you.
26. For among My people are found wicked ones; they lie in wait, as one who sets snares; they set a trap, they catch men.
27. Like a cage full of birds, so their houses are full of deceit; therefore they have become great and grown rich.
28. They have become fat, they have become sleek. Yea, they excel in evil deeds; they do not plead the cause, the cause of the fatherless, yet they prosper; and they do not defend the right of the needy.
29. Shall I not punish for these things?’ says the LORD. ‘Shall not My soul be avenged on such a nation as this?
30. An astounding and horrible thing has happened in the land.
31. The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and My people love to have it so, and what will you do at the end of it?’ ”
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