Thus says the Lord: "Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and there speak this word,
and say, 'Hear the word of the Lord, O king of Judah, you who sit on the throne of David, you and your servants and your people who enter these gates!
Thus says the Lord: "Execute judgment and righteousness, and deliver the plundered out of the hand of the oppressor. Do no wrong and do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, or the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place.
For if you indeed do this thing, then shall enter the gates of this house, riding on horses and in chariots, accompanied by servants and people, kings who sit on the throne of David.
But if you will not hear these words, I swear by Myself," says the Lord, "that this house shall become a desolation." ' "
For thus says the Lord to the house of the king of Judah: "You are Gilead to Me, The head of Lebanon; Yet I surely will make you a wilderness, Cities which are not inhabited.
I will prepare destroyers against you, Everyone with his weapons; They shall cut down your choice cedars And cast them into the fire.
And many nations will pass by this city; and everyone will say to his neighbor, 'Why has the Lord done so to this great city?'
Then they will answer, 'Because they have forsaken the covenant of the Lord their God, and worshiped other gods and served them.' "
Weep not for the dead, nor bemoan him; Weep bitterly for him who goes away, For he shall return no more, Nor see his native country.
For thus says the Lord concerning Shallum the son of Josiah, king of Judah, who reigned instead of Josiah his father, who went from this place: "He shall not return here anymore,
but he shall die in the place where they have led him captive, and shall see this land no more.
"Woe to him who builds his house by unrighteousness And his chambers by injustice, Who uses his neighbor's service without wages And gives him nothing for his work,
Who says, 'I will build myself a wide house with spacious chambers, And cut out windows for it, Paneling it with cedar And painting it with vermilion.'
"Shall you reign because you enclose yourself in cedar? Did not your father eat and drink, And do justice and righteousness? Then it was well with him.
He judged the cause of the poor and needy; Then it was well. Was not this knowing Me?" says the Lord.
"Yet your eyes and your heart are for nothing but your covetousness, For shedding innocent blood, And practicing oppression and violence."
Therefore thus says the Lord concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah: "They shall not lament for him, Saying, 'Alas, my brother!' or 'Alas, my sister!' They shall not lament for him, Saying, 'Alas, master!' or 'Alas, his glory!'
He shall be buried with the burial of a donkey, Dragged and cast out beyond the gates of Jerusalem.
"Go up to Lebanon, and cry out, And lift up your voice in Bashan; Cry from Abarim, For all your lovers are destroyed.
I spoke to you in your prosperity, But you said, 'I will not hear.' This has been your manner from your youth, That you did not obey My voice.
The wind shall eat up all your rulers, And your lovers shall go into captivity; Surely then you will be ashamed and humiliated For all your wickedness.
O inhabitant of Lebanon, Making your nest in the cedars, How gracious will you be when pangs come upon you, Like the pain of a woman in labor?
"As I live," says the Lord, "though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, were the signet on My right hand, yet I would pluck you off;
and I will give you into the hand of those who seek your life, and into the hand of those whose face you fear--the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and the hand of the Chaldeans.
So I will cast you out, and your mother who bore you, into another country where you were not born; and there you shall die.
But to the land to which they desire to return, there they shall not return.
"Is this man Coniah a despised, broken idol-- A vessel in which is no pleasure? Why are they cast out, he and his descendants, And cast into a land which they do not know?
O earth, earth, earth, Hear the word of the Lord!
Thus says the Lord: 'Write this man down as childless, A man who shall not prosper in his days; For none of his descendants shall prosper, Sitting on the throne of David, And ruling anymore in Judah.' "
"Woe to the shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of My pasture!" says the Lord.
Therefore thus says the Lord God of Israel against the shepherds who feed My people: "You have scattered My flock, driven them away, and not attended to them. Behold, I will attend to you for the evil of your doings," says the Lord.
"But I will gather the remnant of My flock out of all countries where I have driven them, and bring them back to their folds; and they shall be fruitful and increase.
I will set up shepherds over them who will feed them; and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, nor shall they be lacking," says the Lord.
"Behold, the days are coming," says the Lord, "That I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; A King shall reign and prosper, And execute judgment and righteousness in the earth.
In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell safely; Now this is His name by which He will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.
"Therefore, behold, the days are coming," says the Lord, "that they shall no longer say, 'As the Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of Egypt,'
but, 'As the Lord lives who brought up and led the descendants of the house of Israel from the north country and from all the countries where I had driven them.' And they shall dwell in their own land."
My heart within me is broken Because of the prophets; All my bones shake. I am like a drunken man, And like a man whom wine has overcome, Because of the Lord, And because of His holy words.
For the land is full of adulterers; For because of a curse the land mourns. The pleasant places of the wilderness are dried up. Their course of life is evil, And their might is not right.
"For both prophet and priest are profane; Yes, in My house I have found their wickedness," says the Lord.
"Therefore their way shall be to them Like slippery ways; In the darkness they shall be driven on And fall in them; For I will bring disaster on them, The year of their punishment," says the Lord.
"And I have seen folly in the prophets of Samaria: They prophesied by Baal And caused My people Israel to err.
Also I have seen a horrible thing in the prophets of Jerusalem: They commit adultery and walk in lies; They also strengthen the hands of evildoers, So that no one turns back from his wickedness. All of them are like Sodom to Me, And her inhabitants like Gomorrah.
"Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts concerning the prophets: 'Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, And make them drink the water of gall; For from the prophets of Jerusalem Profaneness has gone out into all the land.' "
Thus says the Lord of hosts: "Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you. They make you worthless; They speak a vision of their own heart, Not from the mouth of the Lord.
They continually say to those who despise Me, 'The Lord has said, "You shall have peace" '; And to everyone who walks according to the dictates of his own heart, they say, 'No evil shall come upon you.' "
For who has stood in the counsel of the Lord, And has perceived and heard His word? Who has marked His word and heard it?
Behold, a whirlwind of the Lord has gone forth in fury-- A violent whirlwind! It will fall violently on the head of the wicked.
The anger of the Lord will not turn back Until He has executed and performed the thoughts of His heart. In the latter days you will understand it perfectly.
"I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran. I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.
But if they had stood in My counsel, And had caused My people to hear My words, Then they would have turned them from their evil way And from the evil of their doings.
"Am I a God near at hand," says the Lord, "And not a God afar off?
Can anyone hide himself in secret places, So I shall not see him?" says the Lord; "Do I not fill heaven and earth?" says the Lord.
"I have heard what the prophets have said who prophesy lies in My name, saying, 'I have dreamed, I have dreamed!'
How long will this be in the heart of the prophets who prophesy lies? Indeed they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart,
who try to make My people forget My name by their dreams which everyone tells his neighbor, as their fathers forgot My name for Baal.
"The prophet who has a dream, let him tell a dream; And he who has My word, let him speak My word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat?" says the Lord.
"Is not My word like a fire?" says the Lord, "And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?
"Therefore behold, I am against the prophets," says the Lord, "who steal My words every one from his neighbor.
Behold, I am against the prophets," says the Lord, "who use their tongues and say, 'He says.'
Behold, I am against those who prophesy false dreams," says the Lord, "and tell them, and cause My people to err by their lies and by their recklessness. Yet I did not send them or command them; therefore they shall not profit this people at all," says the Lord.
"So when these people or the prophet or the priest ask you, saying, 'What is the oracle of the Lord?' you shall then say to them, 'What oracle?' I will even forsake you," says the Lord.
And as for the prophet and the priest and the people who say, 'The oracle of the Lord!' I will even punish that man and his house.
Thus every one of you shall say to his neighbor, and every one to his brother, 'What has the Lord answered?' and, 'What has the Lord spoken?'
And the oracle of the Lord you shall mention no more. For every man's word will be his oracle, for you have perverted the words of the living God, the Lord of hosts, our God.
Thus you shall say to the prophet, 'What has the Lord answered you?' and, 'What has the Lord spoken?'
But since you say, 'The oracle of the Lord!' therefore thus says the Lord: 'Because you say this word, "The oracle of the Lord!" and I have sent to you, saying, "Do not say, 'The oracle of the Lord!' "
therefore behold, I, even I, will utterly forget you and forsake you, and the city that I gave you and your fathers, and will cast you out of My presence.
And I will bring an everlasting reproach upon you, and a perpetual shame, which shall not be forgotten.' "
Paul, a bondservant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect and the acknowledgment of the truth which accords with godliness,
in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began,
but has in due time manifested His word through preaching, which was committed to me according to the commandment of God our Savior;
To Titus, a true son in our common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior.
For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city as I commanded you--
if a man is blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination.
For a bishop must be blameless, as a steward of God, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money,
but hospitable, a lover of what is good, sober-minded, just, holy, self-controlled,
holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict.
For there are many insubordinate, both idle talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision,
whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole households, teaching things which they ought not, for the sake of dishonest gain.
One of them, a prophet of their own, said, "Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons."
This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith,
not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth.
To the pure all things are pure, but to those who are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled.
They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work.