Now the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
1"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born 2I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet 3to the nations."
Then I said, "Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, 4I do not know how to speak, 5for I am only a youth."
But the LORD said to me, "Do not say, 'I am only a youth'; for to all to whom I send you, you shall go, and 6whatever I command you, you shall speak.
7Do not be afraid of them, 8for I am with you to deliver you, declares the LORD."
9Then the LORD put out his hand and 10touched my mouth. And the LORD said to me, "Behold, I have put 11my words in your mouth.
See, I have set you this day 12over nations and over kingdoms, 13to pluck up and to break down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant."
And the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 14"Jeremiah, what do you see?" And I said, "I see an almond branch."
Then the LORD said to me, "You have seen well, for I am watching over my word to perform it."
The word of the LORD came to me a second time, saying, "What do you see?" And I said, "I see 15a boiling pot, facing away 16from the north."
Then the LORD said to me, 17"Out of the north disaster shall be let loose upon all the inhabitants of the land.
For behold, 18I am calling all the tribes of the kingdoms of the north, declares the LORD, 19and they shall come, and every one shall set his throne at the entrance of the gates of Jerusalem, against all its walls all around and against all the cities of Judah.
And 20I will declare my judgments against them, for all their evil 21in forsaking me. 22They have made offerings to other gods and 23worshiped the works of their own hands.
But you, 24dress yourself for work; arise, and 25say to them everything that I command you. 26Do not be dismayed by them, lest I dismay you before them.
And I, behold, I make you this day 27a fortified city, 28an iron pillar, and 29bronze walls, against the whole land, against the kings of Judah, its officials, its priests, and the people of the land.
30They will fight against you, but they shall not prevail against you, for 31I am with you, declares the LORD, to deliver you."