The words of Jeremiah son of Hilkiah, one of the priests at Anathoth1 in the territory of Benjamin.
The word of the LORD came2 to him in the thirteenth year of the reign of Josiah3 son of Amon king of Judah,
and through the reign of Jehoiakim4 son of Josiah king of Judah, down to the fifth month of the eleventh year of Zedekiah5 son of Josiah king of Judah, when the people of Jerusalem went into exile.6
The word of the LORD came to me, saying,
"Before I formed you in the womb7 I knewa8 you, before you were born9 I set you apart;10 I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.11"
"Ah, Sovereign LORD," I said, "I do not know how to speak;12 I am only a child."137
But the LORD said to me, "Do not say, 'I am only a child.' You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you.
Do not be afraid14 of them, for I am with you15 and will rescue16 you," declares the LORD.179
Then the LORD reached out his hand and touched18 my mouth and said to me, "Now, I have put my words in your mouth.1910
See, today I appoint you over nations20 and kingdoms to uproot21 and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant."2211
The word of the LORD came to me: "What do you see, Jeremiah?"23 "I see the branch of an almond tree," I replied.