Jeremiah 7 NIV

False Religion Worthless

1 This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD:

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      2 "Stand1 at the gate of the LORD's house and there proclaim this message: " 'Hear the word of the LORD, all you people of Judah who come through these gates to worship the LORD.

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      3 This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Reform your ways2 and your actions, and I will let you live3 in this place.

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      4 Do not trust4 in deceptive5 words and say, "This is the temple of the LORD, the temple of the LORD, the temple of the LORD!"

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      5 If you really change6 your ways and your actions and deal with each other justly,7

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      6 if you do not oppress8 the alien, the fatherless or the widow and do not shed innocent blood9 in this place, and if you do not follow other gods10 to your own harm,

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      7 then I will let you live in this place, in the land11 I gave your forefathers12 for ever and ever.

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      8 But look, you are trusting13 in deceptive14 words that are worthless.

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          9 " 'Will you steal15 and murder,16 commit adultery17 and perjury,a18 burn incense to Baal1920 and follow other gods21 you have not known,

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            • a 7:9 - Or "and swear by false gods"
              10 and then come and stand22 before me in this house,23 which bears my Name, and say, "We are safe"--safe to do all these detestable things?24

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              11 Has this house,25 which bears my Name, become a den of robbers26 to you? But I have been watching!27 declares the LORD.

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              12 " 'Go now to the place in Shiloh28 where I first made a dwelling29 for my Name,30 and see what I did31 to it because of the wickedness of my people Israel.

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              13 While you were doing all these things, declares the LORD, I spoke32 to you again and again,33 but you did not listen;34 I called35 you, but you did not answer.36

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              14 Therefore, what I did to Shiloh37 I will now do to the house that bears my Name,38 the temple39 you trust in, the place I gave to you and your fathers.

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              15 I will thrust you from my presence,40 just as I did all your brothers, the people of Ephraim.'41

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              16 "So do not pray for this people nor offer any plea42 or petition for them; do not plead with me, for I will not listen43 to you.

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              17 Do you not see what they are doing in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem?
              18 The children gather wood, the fathers light the fire, and the women knead the dough and make cakes of bread for the Queen of Heaven.44 They pour out drink offerings45 to other gods to provoke46 me to anger.

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              19 But am I the one they are provoking?47 declares the LORD. Are they not rather harming themselves, to their own shame?48

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              20 " 'Therefore this is what the Sovereign49 LORD says: My anger50 and my wrath will be poured51 out on this place, on man and beast, on the trees of the field and on the fruit of the ground, and it will burn and not be quenched.52

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              21 " 'This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Go ahead, add your burnt offerings to your other sacrifices53 and eat54 the meat yourselves!

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              22 For when I brought your forefathers out of Egypt and spoke to them, I did not just give them commands55 about burnt offerings and sacrifices,56

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              23 but I gave them this command:57 Obey58 me, and I will be your God and you will be my people.59 Walk in all the ways60 I command you, that it may go well61 with you.

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              24 But they did not listen62 or pay attention;63 instead, they followed the stubborn inclinations of their evil hearts.64 They went backward65 and not forward.

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              25 From the time your forefathers left Egypt until now, day after day, again and again66 I sent you my servants67 the prophets.68

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              26 But they did not listen to me or pay attention.69 They were stiff-necked70 and did more evil than their forefathers.'71

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              27 "When you tell72 them all this, they will not listen73 to you; when you call to them, they will not answer.74

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              28 Therefore say to them, 'This is the nation that has not obeyed the LORD its God or responded to correction.75 Truth76 has perished; it has vanished from their lips.

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              29 Cut off77 your hair and throw it away; take up a lament78 on the barren heights, for the LORD has rejected and abandoned79 this generation that is under his wrath.

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              The Valley of Slaughter

              30 " 'The people of Judah have done evil80 in my eyes, declares the LORD. They have set up their detestable idols81 in the house that bears my Name and have defiled82 it.

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                  31 They have built the high places of Topheth83 in the Valley of Ben Hinnom84 to burn their sons and daughters85 in the fire--something I did not command, nor did it enter my mind.86

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                  32 So beware, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when people will no longer call it Topheth or the Valley of Ben Hinnom, but the Valley of Slaughter,87 for they will bury88 the dead in Topheth until there is no more room.

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                  33 Then the carcasses89 of this people will become food90 for the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and there will be no one to frighten them away.91

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                  34 I will bring an end to the sounds92 of joy and gladness and to the voices of bride and bridegroom93 in the towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem,94 for the land will become desolate.95

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