Ask the LORD for rain in the spring, and he will give it. It is the LORD who makes storm clouds that drop showers of rain so that every field becomes a lush pasture.
Household gods give false advice, fortune-tellers predict only lies, and interpreters of dreams pronounce comfortless falsehoods. So my people are wandering like lost sheep, without a shepherd to protect and guide them.
"My anger burns against your shepherds, and I will punish these leaders. a For the LORD Almighty has arrived to look after his flock of Judah; he will make them strong and glorious, like a proud warhorse in battle.
From Judah will come the cornerstone, the tent peg, the battle bow, and all the rulers.
They will be like mighty warriors in battle, trampling their enemies in the mud under their feet. Since the LORD is with them as they fight, they will overthrow even the horsemen of the enemy.
"I will strengthen Judah and save Israel b ; I will reestablish them because I love them. It will be as though I had never rejected them, for I am the LORD their God, who will hear their cries.
The people of Israel c will become like mighty warriors, and their hearts will be happy as if by wine. Their children, too, will see it all and be glad; their hearts will rejoice in the LORD.
When I whistle to them, they will come running, for I have redeemed them. From the few that are left, their population will grow again to its former size.
Though I have scattered them like seeds among the nations, still they will remember me in distant lands. With their children, they will survive and come home again to Israel.
I will bring them back from Egypt and Assyria and resettle them in Gilead and Lebanon. There won't be enough room for them all!
They will pass safely through the sea of distress, d for the waves of the sea will be held back. And the waters of the Nile will become dry. The pride of Assyria will be crushed, and the rule of Egypt will end.
I will make my people strong in my power, and they will go wherever they wish by my authority. I, the LORD, have spoken!"
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)