Let me sing for my beloved a love song concerning his vineyard: My beloved had a vineyard on a very fertile hill.
He digged it and cleared it of stones, and planted it with choice vines; he built a watchtower in the midst of it, and hewed out a wine vat in it; and he looked for it to yield grapes, but it yielded wild grapes.
And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, between me and my vineyard.
What more was there to do for my vineyard, that I have not done in it? When I looked for it to yield grapes, why did it yield wild grapes?
And now I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard. I will remove its hedge, and it shall be devoured; I will break down its wall, and it shall be trampled down.
I will make it a waste; it shall not be pruned or hoed, and briers and thorns shall grow up; I will also command the clouds that they rain no rain upon it.
For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah are his pleasant planting; and he looked for justice, but behold, bloodshed; for righteousness, but behold, a cry!
Woe to those who join house to house, who add field to field, until there is no more room, and you are made to dwell alone in the midst of the land.
The LORD of hosts has sworn in my hearing: "Surely many houses shall be desolate, large and beautiful houses, without inhabitant.
For ten acres of vineyard shall yield but one bath, and a homer of seed shall yield but an ephah."
Woe to those who rise early in the morning, that they may run after strong drink, who tarry late into the evening till wine inflames them!
They have lyre and harp, timbrel and flute and wine at their feasts; but they do not regard the deeds of the LORD, or see the work of his hands.
Therefore my people go into exile for want of knowledge; their honored men are dying of hunger, and their multitude is parched with thirst.
Therefore Sheol has enlarged its appetite and opened its mouth beyond measure, and the nobility of Jerusalem and her multitude go down, her throng and he who exults in her.
Man is bowed down, and men are brought low, and the eyes of the haughty are humbled.
But the LORD of hosts is exalted in justice, and the Holy God shows himself holy in righteousness.
Then shall the lambs graze as in their pasture, fatlings and kids shall feed among the ruins.
Woe to those who draw iniquity with cords of falsehood, who draw sin as with cart ropes,
who say: "Let him make haste, let him speed his work that we may see it; let the purpose of the Holy One of Israel draw near, and let it come, that we may know it!"
Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!
Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and shrewd in their own sight!
Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine, and valiant men in mixing strong drink,
who acquit the guilty for a bribe, and deprive the innocent of his right!
Therefore, as the tongue of fire devours the stubble, and as dry grass sinks down in the flame, so their root will be as rottenness, and their blossom go up like dust; for they have rejected the law of the LORD of hosts, and have despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.
Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against his people, and he stretched out his hand against them and smote them, and the mountains quaked; and their corpses were as refuse in the midst of the streets. For all this his anger is not turned away and his hand is stretched out still.
He will raise a signal for a nation afar off, and whistle for it from the ends of the earth; and lo, swiftly, speedily it comes!
None is weary, none stumbles, none slumbers or sleeps, not a waistcloth is loose, not a sandal-thong broken;
their arrows are sharp, all their bows bent, their horses' hoofs seem like flint, and their wheels like the whirlwind.
Their roaring is like a lion, like young lions they roar; they growl and seize their prey, they carry it off, and none can rescue.
They will growl over it on that day, like the roaring of the sea. And if one look to the land, behold, darkness and distress; and the light is darkened by its clouds.
In the year that King Uzzi'ah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and his train filled the temple.
Above him stood the seraphim; each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew.
And one called to another and said: "Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory."
And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke.
And I said: "Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!"
Then flew one of the seraphim to me, having in his hand a burning coal which he had taken with tongs from the altar.
And he touched my mouth, and said: "Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin forgiven."
And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" Then I said, "Here am I! Send me."
And he said, "Go, and say to this people: 'Hear and hear, but do not understand; see and see, but do not perceive.'
Make the heart of this people fat, and their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their hearts, and turn and be healed."
Then I said, "How long, O Lord?" And he said: "Until cities lie waste without inhabitant, and houses without men, and the land is utterly desolate,
and the LORD removes men far away, and the forsaken places are many in the midst of the land.
And though a tenth remain in it, it will be burned again, like a terebinth or an oak, whose stump remains standing when it is felled." The holy seed is its stump.
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To the saints who are also faithful in Christ Jesus:
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places,
even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him.
He destined us in love to be his sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,
to the praise of his glorious grace which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.
In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace
which he lavished upon us.
For he has made known to us in all wisdom and insight the mystery of his will, according to his purpose which he set forth in Christ
as a plan for the fulness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.
In him, according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to the counsel of his will,
we who first hoped in Christ have been destined and appointed to live for the praise of his glory.
In him you also, who have heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and have believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,
which is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.
For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints,
I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers,
that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him,
having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,
and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power in us who believe, according to the working of his great might
which he accomplished in Christ when he raised him from the dead and made him sit at his right hand in the heavenly places,
far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come;
and he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church,
which is his body, the fulness of him who fills all in all.
Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright 1952 [2nd edition, 1971] by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (Revised Standard Version - Holy Bible)