I will weep and wail for the mountains and take up a lament concerning the desert pastures.1 They are desolate and untraveled, and the lowing of cattle is not heard. The birds of the air2 have fled and the animals are gone.
"I will make Jerusalem a heap3 of ruins, a haunt of jackals;4 and I will lay waste the towns of Judah5 so no one can live there."612
What man is wise7 enough to understand this? Who has been instructed by the LORD and can explain it? Why has the land been ruined and laid waste like a desert that no one can cross?
The LORD said, "It is because they have forsaken my law, which I set before them; they have not obeyed me or followed my law.814
Instead, they have followed9 the stubbornness of their hearts;10 they have followed the Baals, as their fathers taught them."
Therefore, this is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: "See, I will make this people eat bitter food11 and drink poisoned water.1216
I will scatter them among nations13 that neither they nor their fathers have known,14 and I will pursue them with the sword15 until I have destroyed them."1617
This is what the LORD Almighty says: "Consider now! Call for the wailing women17 to come; send for the most skillful of them.
Let them come quickly and wail over us till our eyes overflow with tears and water streams from our eyelids.1819
The sound of wailing is heard from Zion: 'How ruined19 we are! How great is our shame! We must leave our land because our houses are in ruins.' "
Now, O women, hear the word of the LORD; open your ears to the words of his mouth.20 Teach your daughters how to wail; teach one another a lament.21