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Jeremiah 44 MSG/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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1 The Message that Jeremiah received for all the Judeans who lived in the land of Egypt, who had their homes in Migdol, Tahpanhes, Noph, and the land of Pathros: 1 This word came to Jeremiah concerning all the Jews living in Lower Egypt--in Migdol, Tahpanhes and Memphis--and in Upper Egypt:
2 "This is what God-of-the-Angel-Armies, the God of Israel, says: 'You saw with your own eyes the terrible doom that I brought down on Jerusalem and the Judean cities. Look at what's left: ghost towns of rubble and smoking ruins, 2 "This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: You saw the great disaster I brought on Jerusalem and on all the towns of Judah. Today they lie deserted and in ruins
3 and all because they took up with evil ways, making me angry by going off to offer sacrifices and worship the latest in gods - no-gods that neither they nor you nor your ancestors knew the first thing about. 3 because of the evil they have done. They provoked me to anger by burning incense and by worshiping other gods that neither they nor you nor your fathers ever knew.
4 Morning after morning and long into the night I kept after you, sending you all those prophets, my servants, begging you, "Please, please - don't do this, don't fool around in this loathsome gutter of gods that I hate with a passion." 4 Again and again I sent my servants the prophets, who said, 'Do not do this detestable thing that I hate!'
5 But do you think anyone paid the least bit of attention or repented of evil or quit offering sacrifices to the no-gods? Not one. 5 But they did not listen or pay attention; they did not turn from their wickedness or stop burning incense to other gods.
6 So I let loose with my anger, a firestorm of wrath in the cities of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem, and left them in ruins and wasted. And they're still in ruins and wasted.' 6 Therefore, my fierce anger was poured out; it raged against the towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem and made them the desolate ruins they are today.
7 "This is the Message of God, God-of-the-Angel-Armies, the God of Israel: 'So why are you ruining your lives by amputating yourselves - man, woman, child, and baby - from the life of Judah, leaving yourselves isolated, unconnected? 7 "Now this is what the LORD God Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Why bring such great disaster on yourselves by cutting off from Judah the men and women, the children and infants, and so leave yourselves without a remnant?
8 And why do you deliberately make me angry by what you do, offering sacrifices to these no-gods in the land of Egypt where you've come to live? You'll only destroy yourselves and make yourselves an example used in curses and an object of ridicule among all the nations of the earth. 8 Why provoke me to anger with what your hands have made, burning incense to other gods in Egypt, where you have come to live? You will destroy yourselves and make yourselves an object of cursing and reproach among all the nations on earth.
9 "'Have you so soon forgotten the evil lives of your ancestors, the evil lives of the kings of Judah and their wives, to say nothing of your own evil lives, you and your wives, the evil you flaunted in the land of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem? 9 Have you forgotten the wickedness committed by your fathers and by the kings and queens of Judah and the wickedness committed by you and your wives in the land of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem?
10 And to this day, there's not a trace of remorse, not a sign of reverence, nobody caring about living by what I tell them or following my instructions that I've set out so plainly before you and your parents! 10 To this day they have not humbled themselves or shown reverence, nor have they followed my law and the decrees I set before you and your fathers.
11 So this is what God-of-the-Angel-Armies decrees: 11 "Therefore, this is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: I am determined to bring disaster on you and to destroy all Judah.
12 I'm going to take what's left of Judah, those who have decided to go to Egypt and live there, and finish them off. In Egypt they will either be killed or starve to death. The same fate will fall upon both the obscure and the important. Regardless of their status, they will either be killed or starve. You'll end up cursed, reviled, ridiculed, and mocked. 12 I will take away the remnant of Judah who were determined to go to Egypt to settle there. They will all perish in Egypt; they will fall by the sword or die from famine. From the least to the greatest, they will die by sword or famine. They will become an object of cursing and horror, of condemnation and reproach.
13 I'll give those who are in Egypt the same medicine I gave those in Jerusalem: massacre, starvation, and disease. 13 I will punish those who live in Egypt with the sword, famine and plague, as I punished Jerusalem.
14 None of those who managed to get out of Judah alive and get away to Egypt are going to make it back to the Judah for which they're so homesick. None will make it back, except maybe a few fugitives.'" Making Goddess Cookies 14 None of the remnant of Judah who have gone to live in Egypt will escape or survive to return to the land of Judah, to which they long to return and live; none will return except a few fugitives."
15 The men who knew that their wives had been burning sacrifices to the no-gods, joined by a large crowd of women, along with virtually everyone living in Pathros of Egypt, answered Jeremiah: 15 Then all the men who knew that their wives were burning incense to other gods, along with all the women who were present--a large assembly--and all the people living in Lower and Upper Egypt, said to Jeremiah,
16 "We're having nothing to do with what you tell us is God's Message. 16 "We will not listen to the message you have spoken to us in the name of the LORD!
17 We're going to go right on offering sacrifices to the Queen of Heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, keeping up the traditions set by our ancestors, our kings and government leaders in the cities of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem in the good old days. We had a good life then - lots of food, rising standard of living, and no bad luck. 17 We will certainly do everything we said we would: We will burn incense to the Queen of Heaven and will pour out drink offerings to her just as we and our fathers, our kings and our officials did in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. At that time we had plenty of food and were well off and suffered no harm.
18 But the moment we quit sacrificing to the Queen of Heaven and pouring out offerings to her, everything fell apart. We've had nothing but massacres and starvation ever since. 18 But ever since we stopped burning incense to the Queen of Heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, we have had nothing and have been perishing by sword and famine."
19 " And then the women chimed in: "Yes! Absolutely! We're going to keep at it, offering sacrifices to the Queen of Heaven and pouring out offerings to her. Aren't our husbands behind us? They like it that we make goddess cookies and pour out our offerings to her." 19 The women added, "When we burned incense to the Queen of Heaven and poured out drink offerings to her, did not our husbands know that we were making cakes like her image and pouring out drink offerings to her?"
20 Then Jeremiah spoke up, confronting the men and the women, all the people who had answered so insolently. He said, 20 Then Jeremiah said to all the people, both men and women, who were answering him,
21 "The sacrifices that you and your parents, your kings, your government officials, and the common people of the land offered up in the cities of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem - don't you think God noticed? He noticed, all right. 21 "Did not the LORD remember and think about the incense burned in the towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem by you and your fathers, your kings and your officials and the people of the land?
22 And he got fed up. Finally, he couldn't take your evil behavior and your disgusting acts any longer. Your land became a wasteland, a death valley, a horror story, a ghost town. And it continues to be just that. 22 When the LORD could no longer endure your wicked actions and the detestable things you did, your land became an object of cursing and a desolate waste without inhabitants, as it is today.
23 This doom has come upon you because you kept offering all those sacrifices, and you sinned against God! You refused to listen to him, wouldn't live the way he directed, ignored the covenant conditions." 23 Because you have burned incense and have sinned against the LORD and have not obeyed him or followed his law or his decrees or his stipulations, this disaster has come upon you, as you now see."
24 Jeremiah kept going, but now zeroed in on the women: "Listen, all you who are from Judah and living in Egypt - please, listen to God's Word. 24 Then Jeremiah said to all the people, including the women, "Hear the word of the LORD, all you people of Judah in Egypt.
25 God-of-the-Angel-Armies, the God of Israel, says: 'You women! You said it and then you did it. You said, "We're going to keep the vows we made to sacrifice to the Queen of Heaven and pour out offerings to her, and nobody's going to stop us!"' 25 This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: You and your wives have shown by your actions what you promised when you said, 'We will certainly carry out the vows we made to burn incense and pour out drink offerings to the Queen of Heaven.' "Go ahead then, do what you promised! Keep your vows!
26 But also listen to what God has to say about it, all you who are from Judah but live in Egypt: 'I swear by my great name, backed by everything I am - this is God speaking! - that never again shall my name be used in vows, such as "As sure as the Master, God, lives!" by anyone in the whole country of Egypt. 26 But hear the word of the LORD, all Jews living in Egypt: 'I swear by my great name,' says the LORD, 'that no one from Judah living anywhere in Egypt will ever again invoke my name or swear, "As surely as the Sovereign LORD lives."
27 I've targeted each one of you for doom. The good is gone for good. 27 For I am watching over them for harm, not for good; the Jews in Egypt will perish by sword and famine until they are all destroyed.
28 The few who get out of Egypt alive and back to Judah will be very few, hardly worth counting. Then that ragtag bunch that left Judah to live in Egypt will know who had the last word. 28 Those who escape the sword and return to the land of Judah from Egypt will be very few. Then the whole remnant of Judah who came to live in Egypt will know whose word will stand--mine or theirs.
29 "'And this will be the evidence: I will bring punishment right here, and by this you'll know that the decrees of doom against you are the real thing. 29 " 'This will be the sign to you that I will punish you in this place,' declares the LORD, 'so that you will know that my threats of harm against you will surely stand.'
30 Watch for this sign of doom: I will give Pharaoh Hophra king of Egypt over to his enemies, those who are out to kill him, exactly as I gave Zedekiah king of Judah to his enemy Nebuchadnezzar, who was after him. 30 This is what the LORD says: 'I am going to hand Pharaoh Hophra king of Egypt over to his enemies who seek his life, just as I handed Zedekiah king of Judah over to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the enemy who was seeking his life.' "