The LORD spoke his word to Jeremiah about all the people of Judah when Jehoiakim, son of Josiah, was in his fourth year as king. (This was the first year that Nebuchadnezzar was king of Babylon.)
The prophet Jeremiah spoke to all the people of Judah and to everyone who lived in Jerusalem. He said,
"For 23 years, from the time that Josiah, son of Amon, was in his thirteenth year as king of Judah until today, the LORD continued to speak his word to me. So I have spoken to you again and again, but you have not listened.
"Even though the LORD has sent all his servants the prophets to you, you haven't listened or paid attention to them.
The prophets said, 'Turn from your evil ways and the evil you have done, and live in the land that the LORD permanently gave to you and your ancestors.
Don't follow other gods to serve and worship them. Don't make me furious about the idols your hands have shaped. Then I won't harm you.
But you haven't listened to me, declares the LORD. You have made me furious about the idols your hands have shaped and [have brought] harm upon yourselves.'
"This is what the LORD of Armies says: You did not listen to my words,
so I'm going to send for all the families from the north. I will also send for my servant King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, declares the LORD. I will bring the families from the north to attack this land, its people, and all these surrounding nations. I'm going to destroy them and turn them into something terrible, something ridiculed, and something permanently ruined.
I will take from them the sounds of joy and happiness, the sounds of brides and grooms, the sound of mills, and the light of lamps.
This whole land will be ruined and become a wasteland. These nations will serve the king of Babylon for 70 years.
"When the 70 years are over, I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation for their crimes, declares the LORD. I will turn Babylon into a permanent wasteland.
I will bring on that land all the disasters I threatened to do to it, everything that Jeremiah prophesied against all the nations, everything written in this book.
Many nations and great kings will make slaves of the people of Babylon, and I will pay them back for what they have done."
This is what the LORD God of Israel said to me: Take from my hand this cup filled with the wine of my fury, and make all the nations to whom I'm sending you drink from it.
When they drink from it, they will stagger and go insane because of the wars that I'm going to send them.
So I took the cup from the LORD's hand. I made all the nations to whom the LORD sent me drink from it:
Jerusalem and the cities of Judah as well as its kings and officials. When they drank from it, they became wastelands and ruins, something ridiculed and cursed, until today.
[I also made these people drink from it:] Pharaoh king of Egypt, his servants, officials, all his people,
and all the foreign people living among them; all the kings of the land of Uz; all the kings of Philistia, those from the cities of Ashkelon, Gaza, and Ekron, and the people left in Ashdod;
Edom, Moab, and the people of Ammon;
all the kings of Tyre and Sidon, and the kings on the seacoast;
Dedan, Tema, Buz, and all who shave the hair on their foreheads;
all the kings of Arabia, and all the kings of the foreign people living in the desert;
all the kings of Zimri, all the kings of Elam, and all the kings of Media;
all the kings of the north, near and far, one after another--all the kingdoms of the earth. Last of all, the king of Sheshach will drink from the cup.
[The LORD said,] "Say to them, 'This is what the LORD of Armies, the God of Israel, says: Drink, get drunk, vomit, fall down, and don't get up because of the wars that I'm going to send you.'
But if they refuse to take the cup from your hand and drink from it, say to them, 'This is what the LORD of Armies says: You must drink from it!
I am going to bring disaster on the city that is named after me. Do you think you'll go unpunished? You will not go unpunished! I'm declaring war on all those who live on earth, declares the LORD of Armies.'
"That is why you will prophesy all these things to them and say, 'The LORD roars from above. He thunders from his holy dwelling place. He roars against his land. He shouts like those who stomp grapes. He shouts against all those who live on earth.
The sound is echoing to the ends of the earth because the LORD has brought charges against the nations. He will judge all humans. He will kill the wicked, declares the LORD.'
"This is what the LORD of Armies says: Disaster is spreading from nation to nation. A great storm is brewing from the distant corners of the earth."
On that day those killed by the LORD will stretch from one end of the earth to the other. They will not be mourned, taken away, or buried. They will become like manure on the ground.
Mourn, you shepherds, and cry. Roll in the dust, you leaders of the flock. The time has come for you to be slaughtered. The time has come for you to be scattered, and you will break like fine pottery.
There will be no place for the shepherds to flee, no escape for the leaders of the flock.
The shepherds are crying and the leaders of the flock are mourning because the LORD is stripping their pasture.
The peaceful pastures are destroyed by the LORD's burning anger.
He has left his lair like a lion. Their land has been ruined because of the heat of the oppressor, because of the fury of his anger.