This is what the LORD says: "Go and buy a clay jar from a potter.1 Take along some of the elders2 of the people and of the priests
and go out to the Valley of Ben Hinnom,3 near the entrance of the Potsherd Gate. There proclaim the words I tell you,
and say, 'Hear the word of the LORD, O kings4 of Judah and people of Jerusalem. This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Listen! I am going to bring a disaster5 on this place that will make the ears of everyone who hears of it tingle.64
For they have forsaken7 me and made this a place of foreign gods8; they have burned sacrifices9 in it to gods that neither they nor their fathers nor the kings of Judah ever knew, and they have filled this place with the blood of the innocent.105
They have built the high places of Baal to burn their sons11 in the fire as offerings to Baal--something I did not command or mention, nor did it enter my mind.126
So beware, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when people will no longer call this place Topheth13 or the Valley of Ben Hinnom,14 but the Valley of Slaughter.157
" 'In this place I will ruina the plans16 of Judah and Jerusalem. I will make them fall by the sword before their enemies,17 at the hands of those who seek their lives, and I will give their carcasses18 as food19 to the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth.
I will devastate this city and make it an object of scorn;20 all who pass by will be appalled21 and will scoff because of all its wounds.229
I will make them eat23 the flesh of their sons and daughters, and they will eat one another's flesh during the stress of the siege imposed on them by the enemies24 who seek their lives.'
"Then break the jar25 while those who go with you are watching,
and say to them, 'This is what the LORD Almighty says: I will smash26 this nation and this city just as this potter's jar is smashed and cannot be repaired. They will bury27 the dead in Topheth until there is no more room.
This is what I will do to this place and to those who live here, declares the LORD. I will make this city like Topheth.
The houses28 in Jerusalem and those of the kings of Judah will be defiled29 like this place, Topheth--all the houses where they burned incense on the roofs30 to all the starry hosts31 and poured out drink offerings32 to other gods.' "
Jeremiah then returned from Topheth, where the LORD had sent him to prophesy, and stood in the court33 of the LORD's temple and said to all the people,
"This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: 'Listen! I am going to bring on this city and the villages around it every disaster34 I pronounced against them, because they were stiff-necked35 and would not listen36 to my words.' "