The Persistent Sin of Judah
1The sin of Judah is inscribed
with an iron stylus.#Jb 19:24
With a diamond point
it is engraved on the tablet of their hearts#Pr 3:3; 7:3; Jr 31:33-34
and on the horns of their#17:1 Some Hb mss, Syr, Vg; other Hb mss read your altars,
2while their children remember their altars
and their Asherah poles, by the green trees
on the high hills #Dt 16:21; 1Kg 14:23; 2Kg 17:10—
3my mountains in the countryside.
I will give up your wealth
and all your treasures as plunder#Ps 44:10; Is 10:6; 42:22-24; Jr 20:5; 49:31-32; Ezk 7:21; 26:12; 29:19; 36:4; Am 3:11; Zph 1:13
because of the sin of your high places#17:3 Lit plunder, your high places because of sin
in all your borders.#Jr 15:13
4You will, on your own, relinquish your inheritance
that I gave you.
I will make you serve your enemies
in a land you do not know,#Jr 16:13; 22:28; Ezk 32:9
for you have set my anger on fire;#Dt 32:22; Jr 15:14
it will burn forever.
Curse and Blessing
5This is what the Lord says:
Cursed is the person who trusts in mankind.#Ps 146:3
He makes human flesh his strength,#2Ch 32:8
and his heart turns from the Lord.
6He will be like a juniper in the Arabah;#Jr 48:6
he cannot see when good comes
but dwells in the parched places in the wilderness,
in a salt land where no one lives.#Gn 19:24-26; Ps 107:34
7The person who trusts in the Lord,
whose confidence indeed is the Lord, is blessed.#Ps 40:4
8He will be like a tree planted by water:#Ps 1:3; Ezk 17:5-8
it sends its roots out toward a stream,
it doesn’t fear when heat comes,
and its foliage remains green.
It will not worry in a year of drought
or cease producing fruit.
The Deceitful Heart
9The heart is more deceitful than anything else,#Gn 6:5
and incurable — who can understand it?#Jr 15:18; Mc 1:9
10I, the Lord, examine the mind,
I test the heart#17:10 Lit kidneys#Dt 8:2; Ps 17:3; 26:2
to give to each according to his way,
according to what his actions deserve.#Jr 4:18; 7:3,5; 18:11; 23:22; 25:5; 26:3,13; 32:19; Rm 2:6
11He who makes a fortune unjustly
is like a partridge that hatches eggs it didn’t lay.
In the middle of his life
his riches will abandon him,
so in the end he will be a fool.#Lk 12:20
12A glorious throne#Is 6:1-3; Jr 14:21; Ezk 1:26-28
on high#Ps 102:19; Jr 25:30 from the beginning
is the place of our sanctuary.#Ps 68:33-35; Is 60:13
13 Lord, the hope of Israel,#Jr 14:8; 50:7
all who abandon you
will be put to shame.
All who turn away from me
will be written in the dirt,
for they have abandoned
the Lord, the fountain of living water.#Jr 2:13
14Heal me, Lord, and I will be healed;
save me, and I will be saved,
for you are my praise.#Ps 22:25; 71:6; 109:1
15Hear how they keep challenging me,#Is 5:19; 2Pt 3:4
“Where is the word of the Lord?
Let it come!”
16But I have not run away from being your shepherd,
and I have not longed for the fatal day.#Am 5:18
You know my words were spoken in your presence.
17Don’t become a terror to me.
You are my refuge#Ps 46:1; 61:3; 62:7-8 in the day of disaster.
18Let my persecutors be put to shame,#Ps 35:4
but don’t let me be put to shame.
Let them be terrified, but don’t let me be terrified.
Bring on them the day of disaster;#Ps 35:8
shatter them with total#17:18 Lit double destruction.
Observing the Sabbath
19This is what the Lord said to me, “Go and stand at the People’s Gate, through which the kings of Judah enter and leave, as well as at all the gates of Jerusalem. 20Announce to them, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, kings of Judah, all Judah, and all the residents of Jerusalem who enter through these gates. 21This is what the Lord says: Watch yourselves; do not pick up a load and bring it in through Jerusalem’s gates on the Sabbath day.#Neh 13:15-21; Jn 5:9-12 22Do not carry a load out of your houses on the Sabbath day or do any work,#Ex 20:8-10; Dt 5:12-14; Is 56:2-6 but keep the Sabbath day holy, just as I commanded your ancestors.#Ezk 20:12 23They wouldn’t listen or pay attention but became obstinate,#Jr 7:26 not listening or accepting discipline.
24“‘However, if you listen to me — this is the Lord’s declaration — and do not bring loads through the gates of this city on the Sabbath day, but keep the Sabbath day holy and do no work on it, 25kings and princes will enter through the gates of this city. They will sit on the throne of David;#Jr 22:2,30; 29:16; 36:30 they will ride in chariots and on horses#Jr 22:4 with their officials, the men of Judah, and the residents of Jerusalem. This city will be inhabited forever. 26Then people will come from the cities of Judah and from the area around Jerusalem, from the land of Benjamin and from the Judean foothills, from the hill country and from the Negev#Jr 32:44; 33:13 bringing burnt offerings and sacrifices, grain offerings and frankincense, and thank offerings to the house of the Lord. 27But if you do not listen to me to keep the Sabbath day holy by not carrying a load while entering the gates of Jerusalem on the Sabbath day, I will set fire to its gates,#Lm 4:11 and it will consume the citadels#Jr 49:27; Am 1:14 of Jerusalem#2Kg 25:9 and not be extinguished.’”#Jr 7:20