Attention! God calls out to the city! If you know what's good for you, you'll listen. So listen, all of you! This is serious business.
"Do you expect me to overlook obscene wealth you've piled up by cheating and fraud?
Do you think I'll tolerate shady deals and shifty scheming?
I'm tired of the violent rich bullying their way with bluffs and lies.
I'm fed up. Beginning now, you're finished. You'll pay for your sins down to your last cent.
No matter how much you get, it will never be enough - hollow stomachs, empty hearts. No matter how hard you work, you'll have nothing to show for it - bankrupt lives, wasted souls.
You'll plant grass but never get a lawn. You'll make jelly but never spread it on your bread. You'll press apples but never drink the cider.
You have lived by the standards of your king, Omri, the decadent lifestyle of the family of Ahab. Because you've slavishly followed their fashions, I'm forcing you into bankruptcy. Your way of life will be laughed at, a tasteless joke. Your lives will be derided as futile and fake."
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)