1 When that time comes – it is Yahweh who speaks – they will bring from the tombs the bones of the kings of Judah, the bones of their leaders, priests, prophets and of the inhabitants of Jeru salem. 2 They will expose them to the Sun and Moon and all the gods of the skies, because they have loved and served them, and they have followed and worshiped them. These bones will not be gathered up to be replaced in tombs but will remain like dung on the ground.
3 Death will be preferable to life for the survivors of this perverse race who re main in places to which I have driven them.
Sin and punishment
4 This is what Yahweh told me, “You will say to them: Doesn’t the one who falls get up and the one who goes away return? 5 Why then has this people turned away in stubborn rebellion? They make a habit of deceit and refuse to repent.
6 I listened attentively; they did not speak truthfully nor did they repent of their wickedness. No one says: ‘What have I done!’ They all follow their own course like horses plunging into battle. 7 Even the stork in the sky knows her times; the dove, the swallow and the crane know the time to return, but my people do not know the ordinances of Yahweh.
8 How dare you say: ‘We are wise and the Law of Yahweh is with us’ when the de ceiving pen of the scribe has turned it in to a lie? 9 The wise will be put to shame; they shall be dismayed and trapped. Since they have despised the word of Yahweh, what then is left as the basis of their wisdom?
10 That is why I will give their wives to other men, their fields to conquerors, for all of them, the smallest to the greatest, are greedy for gain. All, from the prophet to the priest, practice deceit. 11 They treat lightly the wound of my people saying ‘Peace, peace!’ when there is no peace.
12 They should be ashamed of their abom inable deeds. They have no shame and don’t even know how to blush. Surely they shall fall along with those who will fall; for I will ask them to account and they will stumble.
13 I will make an end of them – it is Yahweh who speaks – for the vine yields no grapes, the fig tree no figs, even the leaves are withered. I will hand them over to the passersby.”
14 “Why do we sit still? Get up! We shall go to the fortified cities to perish there. See, Yahweh our God wants us to die and gives us poisoned water, because we have sinned against him.
15 We hoped for peace and we see nothing good! for a time of healing, but terror came! 16 From Dan we hear the snorting of his horses; at the sound of the neighing of his stallions the whole earth trembles.”
16 – “They are coming to devour the land and all it contains, the city and all who dwell in it. 17 For I am letting loose against you snakes and adders that cannot be charmed, and they will bite you.”
18 Sorrow takes hold of me, my heart fails me. 19 The pleading of the daughter of my people is heard all over the land: Has Yahweh abandoned Zion? Is her king no longer there?—“Why have they provoked me with their images, with their foreign gods?”
20 The harvest is over, the summer is past and we have not been saved. 21 I am brokenhearted because of my people’s misfortune.
21 I am crushed and dismayed. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no healer there? Why is no remedy given to my people?
23 I would that my head were a well of water and my eyes a fountain of tears to weep day and night for the slain of my people.