Jeremiah received the LORD's word:
The LORD, the God of Israel, proclaims: Write down in a scroll all the words I have spoken to you.
The time is coming, declares the LORD, when I will bring back my people Israel and Judah from captivity, says the LORD. I will bring them home to the land that I gave to their ancestors, and they will possess it.
Here are the words that the LORD spoke concerning Israel and Judah:
The LORD proclaims: I hear screams of panic and terror; no one is safe.
Ask and see: Can men bear children? Then why do I see every man bent over in pain, as if he's in labor? Why have all turned pale?
That day is awful, beyond words. A time of unspeakable pain for my people Jacob. But they will be delivered from it.
At that time, I will break the yoke off their necks and remove their shackles. Foreigners will no longer enslave them, declares the LORD of heavenly forces.
They will serve the LORD their God and the king whom I will raise up for them from David's family.
So don't be afraid, my servant Jacob, declares the LORD, Don't lose hope, Israel. I will deliver you from faraway places and your children from the land of their exile. My people Jacob will again be safe and sound, with no one harassing them.
I am with you and will rescue you, declares the LORD. I will put an end to all the nations where I have scattered you. But I won't put an end to you. I won't let you remain unpunished: I will discipline you as you deserve.
This is what the LORD says: Your injury is incurable; your illness is grave.
No one comes to your aid; no one attends to your wound; your disease is incurable.
All your lovers disregard you; they write you off as a lost cause, because I have dealt harshly with you as an enemy would, because your guilt is great and your sins are many.
Why cry out for relief from your pain? Your wound is incurable. I have done these things to you, because your guilt is great and your sins are many.
Yet all who ravage you will be ravaged; all who oppress you will go into exile. Those who rob you will be robbed, and all who plunder you will be plundered.
I will restore your health, and I will heal your wounds, declares the LORD, because you were labeled an outcast, "Zion, the lost cause."
The LORD proclaims: I will restore Jacob's tents and have pity on their birthplace. Their city will be rebuilt on its ruins and the palace in its rightful place.
There will be laughter and songs of thanks. I will add to their numbers so they don't dwindle away. I will honor them so they aren't humiliated.
Their children will thrive as they did long ago, and their community will be established before me. I will punish their oppressors.
They will have their own leader; their ruler will come from among them. I will let him approach me, and he will draw near. Who would dare approach me unless I let them come? declares the LORD.
You will be my people, and I will be your God.
Look! The LORD's anger breaks out like a violent storm, a fierce wind that strikes the heads of the wicked.
The LORD's fierce anger won't turn back until God's purposes are entirely accomplished. In the days to come, you will understand what this means.