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Lamentations 4 NCV/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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1 See how the gold has lost its shine, how the pure gold has dulled! at every street corner. 1 How the gold has lost its luster, the fine gold become dull! The sacred gems are scattered at the head of every street.
2 The precious people of Jerusalem were more valuable than gold, but now they are thought of as clay jars made by the hands of a potter. 2 How the precious sons of Zion, once worth their weight in gold, are now considered as pots of clay, the work of a potter's hands!
3 Even wild dogs give their milk to feed their young, but my people are cruel like ostriches in the desert. 3 Even jackals offer their breasts to nurse their young, but my people have become heartless like ostriches in the desert.
4 The babies are so thirsty their tongues stick to the roofs of their mouths. Children beg for bread, but no one gives them any. 4 Because of thirst the infant's tongue sticks to the roof of its mouth; the children beg for bread, but no one gives it to them.
5 Those who once ate fine foods are now starving in the streets. People who grew up wearing nice clothes now pick through trash piles. 5 Those who once ate delicacies are destitute in the streets. Those nurtured in purple now lie on ash heaps.
6 My people have been punished more than Sodom was. Sodom was destroyed suddenly, and no hands reached out to help her. 6 The punishment of my people is greater than that of Sodom, which was overthrown in a moment without a hand turned to help her.
7 Our princes were purer than snow, and whiter than milk. Their bodies were redder than rubies; they looked like sapphires. 7 Their princes were brighter than snow and whiter than milk, their bodies more ruddy than rubies, their appearance like sapphires.
8 But now they are blacker than coal, and no one recognizes them in the streets. Their skin hangs on their bones; it is as dry as wood. 8 But now they are blacker than soot; they are not recognized in the streets. Their skin has shriveled on their bones; it has become as dry as a stick.
9 Those who were killed in the war were better off than those killed by hunger. They starve in pain and die, because there is no food from the field. 9 Those killed by the sword are better off than those who die of famine; racked with hunger, they waste away for lack of food from the field.
10 With their own hands kind women cook their own children. They became food when my people were destroyed. 10 With their own hands compassionate women have cooked their own children, who became their food when my people were destroyed.
11 The Lord turned loose all of his anger; he poured out his strong anger. He set fire to Jerusalem, burning it down to the foundations. 11 The LORD has given full vent to his wrath; he has poured out his fierce anger. He kindled a fire in Zion that consumed her foundations.
12 Kings of the earth and people of the world could not believe that enemies and foes could enter the gates of Jerusalem. 12 The kings of the earth did not believe, nor did any of the world's people, that enemies and foes could enter the gates of Jerusalem.
13 It happened because her prophets sinned and her priests did evil. They killed in the city those who did what was right. 13 But it happened because of the sins of her prophets and the iniquities of her priests, who shed within her the blood of the righteous.
14 They wandered in the streets as if they were blind. They were dirty with blood, so no one would touch their clothes. 14 Now they grope through the streets like men who are blind. They are so defiled with blood that no one dares to touch their garments.
15 "Go away! You are unclean," people shouted at them. "Get away! Get away! Don't touch us!" So they ran away and wandered. Even the other nations said, "Don't stay here." 15 "Go away! You are unclean!" men cry to them. "Away! Away! Don't touch us!" When they flee and wander about, people among the nations say, "They can stay here no longer."
16 The Lord himself scattered them and did not look after them anymore. No one respects the priests or honors the older leaders. 16 The LORD himself has scattered them; he no longer watches over them. The priests are shown no honor, the elders no favor.
17 Also, our eyes grew tired, looking for help that never came. We kept watch from our towers for a nation to save us. 17 Moreover, our eyes failed, looking in vain for help; from our towers we watched for a nation that could not save us.
18 Our enemies hunted us, so we could not even walk in the streets. Our end is near. Our time is up. Our end has come. 18 Men stalked us at every step, so we could not walk in our streets. Our end was near, our days were numbered, for our end had come.
19 Those who chased us were faster than eagles in the sky. They ran us into the mountains and ambushed us in the desert. 19 Our pursuers were swifter than eagles in the sky; they chased us over the mountains and lay in wait for us in the desert.
20 The Lord's appointed king, who was our very breath, was caught in their traps. We had said about him, "We will be protected by him among the nations." 20 The LORD's anointed, our very life breath, was caught in their traps. We thought that under his shadow we would live among the nations.
21 Be happy and glad, people of Edom, you who live in the land of Uz. The cup of God's anger will come to you; then you will get drunk and go naked. 21 Rejoice and be glad, O Daughter of Edom, you who live in the land of Uz. But to you also the cup will be passed; you will be drunk and stripped naked.
22 Your punishment is complete, Jerusalem. He will not send you into captivity again. But the Lord will punish the sins of Edom; he will uncover your evil. 22 O Daughter of Zion, your punishment will end; he will not prolong your exile. But, O Daughter of Edom, he will punish your sin and expose your wickedness.