Jerusalem's Godlessness

1 "1Roam to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, And look now and take note. And seek in her open squares, If you can 2find a man, 3If there is one who does justice, who seeks truth, Then I will pardon her.
2 "And 4although they say, 'As the LORD lives,' Surely they swear falsely."
3 O LORD, do not 5Your eyes look for truth? You have 6smitten them, But they did not weaken; You have consumed them, But they 7refused to take correction. They have 8made their faces harder than rock; They have refused to repent.
4 Then I said, "They are only the poor, They are foolish; For they 9do not know the way of the LORD Or the ordinance of their God.
5 "I will go to the great And will speak to them, For 10they know the way of the LORD And the ordinance of their God." But they too, with one accord, have 11broken the yoke And burst the bonds.
6 Therefore * 12a lion from the forest will slay them, A 13wolf of the deserts will destroy them, A 14leopard is watching their cities. Everyone who goes out of them will be torn in pieces, Because their 15transgressions are many, Their apostasies are numerous.
7 "Why should I pardon you? Your sons have forsaken Me And 16sworn by those who are 17not gods. When I had fed them to the full, They 18committed adultery And trooped to the harlot's house.
9 "Shall I not punish these people," declares the LORD, "And on a nation such as this 20Shall I not avenge Myself?
10 "Go up through her vine rows and destroy, But do not execute a complete destruction; Strip away her branches, For they are not the LORD'S.
11 "For the 21house of Israel and the house of Judah Have dealt very treacherously with Me," declares the LORD.
12 They have 22lied about the LORD And said, "23Not He; Misfortune will 24not come on us, And we 25will not see sword or famine.
13 "The 26prophets are as wind, And the word is not in them. Thus it will be done to them!"

Judgment Proclaimed

14 Therefore, thus says the LORD, the God of hosts, "Because you have spoken this word, Behold, I am 27making My words in your mouth fire And this people wood, and it will consume them.
15 "Behold, I am 28bringing a nation against you from afar, O house of Israel," declares the LORD. "It is an enduring nation, It is an ancient nation, A nation whose 29language you do not know, Nor can you understand what they say.
16 "Their 30quiver is like an 31open grave, All of them are mighty men.
17 "They will 32devour your harvest and your food; They will devour your sons and your daughters; They will devour your flocks and your herds; They will devour your 33vines and your fig trees; They will demolish with the sword your 34fortified cities in which you trust.
18 "Yet even in those days," declares the LORD, "I will not make you a complete destruction.
19 "It shall come about 35when they say, 'Why * has the LORD our God done all these things to us?' then you shall say to them, 'As you have forsaken Me and served foreign gods in your land, so you will 36serve strangers in a land that is not yours.'
20 "Declare this in the house of Jacob And proclaim it in Judah, saying,
21 'Now hear this, O foolish and senseless * people, Who have 37eyes but do not see; Who have ears but do not hear.
22 'Do you not 38fear Me?' declares the LORD. 'Do you not tremble in My presence? For I have 39placed the sand as a boundary for the sea, An eternal decree, so it cannot cross over it. Though the waves toss, yet they cannot prevail; Though they roar, yet they cannot cross over it.
23 'But this people has a 40stubborn and rebellious heart; They have turned aside and departed.
24 'They do not say in their heart, "Let us now fear the LORD our God, Who 41gives rain in its season, Both 42the autumn rain and the spring rain, Who keeps for us The 43appointed weeks of the harvest."
25 'Your 44iniquities have turned these away, And your sins have withheld good from you.
26 'For wicked men are found among My people, They 45watch like fowlers lying in wait; They set a trap, They catch men.
27 'Like a cage full of birds, So their houses are full of 46deceit; Therefore * they have become great and rich.
28 'They are 47fat, they are sleek, They also excel in deeds of wickedness; They do not plead the cause, The cause of the 48orphan, that they may prosper; And they do not defend the rights of the poor.
29 '49Shall I not punish these people?' declares the LORD, 'On a nation such as this Shall I not avenge Myself?'
30 "An appalling and 50horrible thing Has happened in the land:
31 The 51prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests rule on their own authority; And My people 52love it so! But what will you do at the end of it?