Yahweh Disciplines Israel
“Flee for safety, O sons of Benjamin,
From the midst of Jerusalem!
Now blow a trumpet in Tekoa
And raise a signal over Beth‑haccerem,
For evil looks down from the north,
As well as great destruction. 2
The comely and delicate one, the daughter of Zion, I will ruin. 3
Shepherds and their flocks will come to her;
They will pitch their tents around her;
They will pasture each in his place. 4
Set yourselves apart for war against her;
Arise, and let us go up at noon.
Woe to us, for the day declines,
For the shadows of the evening stretch out! 5
Arise, and let us go up by night
And destroy her palaces!” 6
For thus says Yahweh of hosts,
“Cut down her trees
And cast up a siege against Jerusalem.
This is the city to be punished,
In whose midst there is only oppression. 7
Like a well keeps its waters fresh,
So she keeps fresh her evil.
Violence and devastation are heard in her;
Sickness and wounds are continually before Me. 8
Heed discipline, O Jerusalem,
Lest My soul become disgusted at you,
Lest I make you a desolation,
A land not inhabited.”
9 Thus says Yahweh of hosts,
“They will thoroughly glean as the vine the remnant of Israel;
Pass your hand again like a grape gatherer
Over the branches.” 10
To whom shall I speak and give warning
That they may hear?
Behold, their ears are uncircumcised,
And they cannot give heed.
Behold, the word of Yahweh has become a reproach to them;
They have no delight in it. 11
But I am full of the wrath of Yahweh;
I am weary of holding it in.
“Pour it out on the infants in the street
And on the gathering of choice men together;
For both husband and wife shall be captured,
The aged with the one full of days. 12
Their houses shall be turned over to others,
Their fields and their wives together,
For I will stretch out My hand
Against the inhabitants of the land,” declares Yahweh. 13
“For from the least of them even to the greatest of them,
Everyone is greedy for gain,
And from the prophet even to the priest
Everyone practices lying. 14
They have healed the brokenness of My people superficially,
Saying, ‘Peace, peace,’
But there is no peace. 15
Were they ashamed because of the abomination they have done?
They were not even ashamed at all;
They did not even know how to feel dishonor.
Therefore they shall fall among those who fall;
At the time that I punish them,
They shall be cast down,” says Yahweh.
16 Thus says Yahweh,
“Stand by the ways and see and ask for the ancient paths,
Where the good way is, and walk in it;
And you will find rest for your souls.
But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’ 17
And I set watchmen over you, saying,
‘Give heed to the sound of the trumpet!’
But they said, ‘We will not give heed.’ 18
Therefore hear, O nations,
And know, O congregation, what is among them. 19
Hear, O earth: behold, I am bringing evil on this people,
The fruit of their plans,
Because they have not given heed to My words,
And as for My law, they have rejected it also. 20
For what purpose does frankincense come to Me from Sheba
And the sweet cane from a distant land?
Your burnt offerings are not acceptable,
And your sacrifices are not pleasing to Me.” 21
Therefore, thus says Yahweh,
“Behold, I am laying stumbling blocks before this people.
And they will stumble against them,
Fathers and sons together;
Neighbor and friend will perish.”
Mourn the Coming Destroyer22 Thus says Yahweh,
“Behold, a people is coming from the land of the north,
And a great nation will be aroused from the remote parts of the earth. 23
They take hold of bow and spear;
They are cruel and have no compassion;
Their voice roars like the sea,
And they ride on horses,
Arranged as a man for the battle
Against you, O daughter of Zion!” 24
We have heard the report of it;
Our hands are limp.
Distress has taken hold of us,
Pain as of a woman in childbirth. 25
Do not go out into the field
And do not walk on the road,
For the enemy has a sword;
Terror is on every side. 26
O daughter of my people, gird yourself with sackcloth
And roll in ashes;
Mourn as for an only son,
A lamentation most bitter.
For suddenly the destroyer
Will come upon us.
“I have made you a tester of metals and an assayer among My people,
That you may know and test their way.” 28
All of them are rebelliously stubborn,
Going about as a slanderer.
They are bronze and iron;
They, all of them, are corrupt. 29
The bellows blow fiercely;
The lead is consumed by the fire;
In vain the refining goes on,
But the evil ones are not separated. 30
They call them rejected silver
Because Yahweh has rejected them.