Jeremiah 12 (Today's New International Version)

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Jeremiah's Complaint

1 You are always righteous,1 LORD, when I bring a case2 before you. Yet I would speak with you about your justice:3 Why does the way of the wicked prosper?4 Why do all the faithless live at ease? 2 You have planted5 them, and they have taken root; they grow and bear fruit.6 You are always on their lips but far from their hearts.7 3 Yet you know me, LORD; you see me and test8 my thoughts about you. Drag them off like sheep9 to be butchered! Set them apart for the day of slaughter!10 4 How long will the land lie parched11 and the grass in every field be withered?12 Because those who live in it are wicked, the animals and birds have perished.13 Moreover, the people are saying, "He will not see what happens to us."

God's Answer

5 "If you have raced with people on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses? If you stumblea in safe country, how will you manage in the thickets14 byb the Jordan? 6 Your relatives, members of your own family-- even they have betrayed you; they have raised a loud cry against you.15 Do not trust them, though they speak well of you.16 7 "I will forsake17 my house, abandon18 my inheritance; I will give the one I love19 into the hands of her enemies.20 8 My inheritance has become to me like a lion21 in the forest. She roars at me; therefore I hate her.22 9 Has not my inheritance become to me like a speckled bird of prey that other birds of prey surround and attack? Go and gather all the wild beasts; bring them to devour.23 10 Many shepherds24 will ruin my vineyard and trample down my field; they will turn my pleasant field into a desolate wasteland.25 11 It will be made a wasteland,26 parched and desolate before me;27 the whole land will be laid waste because there is no one who cares. 12 Over all the barren heights in the desert destroyers will swarm, for the sword28 of the LORD29 will devour30 from one end of the land to the other;31 no one will be safe.32 13 They will sow wheat but reap thorns; they will wear themselves out but gain nothing.33 They will bear the shame of their harvest because of the LORD's fierce anger."34 14 This is what the LORD says: "As for all my wicked neighbors who seize the inheritance35 I gave my people Israel, I will uproot36 them from their lands and I will uproot37 the house of Judah from among them. 15 But after I uproot them, I will again have compassion38 and will bring39 each of them back to their own inheritance and their own country. 16 And if they learn40 well the ways of my people and swear by my name, saying, 'As surely as the LORD lives'41--even as they once taught my people to swear by Baal42--then they will be established among my people.43 17 But if any nation does not listen, I will completely uproot and destroy44 it," declares the LORD.
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