1The word which came to Jeremiah from Yahweh, saying, 2“Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause you to hear my words.”
3Then I went down to the potter’s house, and behold, he was making a work on the wheels. 4When the vessel that he made of the clay was marred in the hand of the potter, he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.
5Then Yahweh’s word came to me, saying, 6“House of Israel, can’t I do with you as this potter?” says Yahweh. “Behold, as the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand, house of Israel. 7At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up and to break down and to destroy it; 8if that nation, concerning which I have spoken, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do to them. 9At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it; 10if they do that which is evil in my sight, that they not obey my voice, then I will repent of the good, with which I said I would benefit them.
11“Now therefore, speak to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Yahweh says: “Behold, I frame evil against you, and devise a device against you. Everyone return from his evil way now, and amend your ways and your doings.”’ 12But they say, ‘It is in vain; for we will walk after our own devices, and we will do everyone after the stubbornness of his evil heart.’”
13Therefore Yahweh says:
“Ask now among the nations,
who has heard such things.
The virgin of Israel has done a very horrible thing.
14Shall the snow of Lebanon fail from the rock of the field?
Shall the cold waters that flow down from afar be dried up?
15For my people have forgotten me.
They have burned incense to false gods.
They have been made to stumble in their ways,
in the ancient paths,
to walk in byways, in a way not built up;
16to make their land an astonishment,
and a perpetual hissing.
Everyone who passes thereby shall be astonished,
and shake his head.
17I will scatter them as with an east wind before the enemy.
I will show them the back, and not the face,
in the day of their calamity.
18Then they said, “Come, and let us devise devices against Jeremiah; for the law shall not perish from the priest, nor counsel from the wise, nor the word from the prophet. Come, and let us strike him with the tongue, and let us not give heed to any of his words.”
19Give heed to me, Yahweh,
and listen to the voice of those who contend with me.
20Shall evil be recompensed for good?
For they have dug a pit for my soul.
Remember how I stood before you to speak good for them,
to turn away your wrath from them.
21Therefore deliver up their children to the famine,
and give them over to the power of the sword.
Let their wives become childless, and widows;
and let their men be slain of death,
and their young men struck by the sword in battle.
22Let a cry be heard from their houses,
when you shall bring a troop suddenly on them;
for they have dug a pit to take me,
and hidden snares for my feet.
23Yet, Yahweh, you know all their counsel against me to kill me.
Don’t forgive their iniquity,
neither blot out their sin from your sight;
but let them be overthrown before you.
Deal you with them in the time of your anger.