"O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter does?" declares the LORD. "Like clay1 in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand,2 O house of Israel.
If at any time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be uprooted,3 torn down and destroyed,
and if that nation I warned repents of its evil, then I will relent4 and not inflict on it the disaster5 I had planned.
And if at another time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be built6 up and planted,
and if it does evil7 in my sight and does not obey me, then I will reconsider8 the good I had intended to do for it.911
"Now therefore say to the people of Judah and those living in Jerusalem, 'This is what the LORD says: Look! I am preparing a disaster10 for you and devising a plan11 against you. So turn12 from your evil ways,13 each one of you, and reform your ways and your actions.'1412
But they will reply, 'It's no use.15 We will continue with our own plans; each of us will follow the stubbornness of his evil heart.16' "
Therefore this is what the LORD says: "Inquire among the nations: Who has ever heard anything like this?17 A most horrible18 thing has been done by Virgin19 Israel.
Does the snow of Lebanon ever vanish from its rocky slopes? Do its cool waters from distant sources ever cease to flow?a15
Yet my people have forgotten20 me; they burn incense21 to worthless idols,22 which made them stumble23 in their ways and in the ancient paths.24 They made them walk in bypaths and on roads not built up.2516
Their land will be laid waste,26 an object of lasting scorn;27 all who pass by will be appalled28 and will shake their heads.29