The unfaithful bride
1 The word of Yahweh came to me in these terms, 2 “Son of man, make known to Jerusalem its sins. 3 You say on my behalf: Your beginning was in Canaan; there you were born. Your father was an Amorite and your mother a Hittite. 4 On the day you were born your cord was not cut, you were not bathed in water to make you clean, you were not rubbed with salt nor were you wrapped in cloth. 5 There was no one to look with pity on you or compassionate enough to give you any of these attentions. You were left exposed in the open fields because you were looked upon with disgust on the day you were born.
6 But I passed by and saw you immersed in your blood. I said to you in the midst of your blood, “Live!” 7 I made you grow like a plant of the field. 8 You grew up and became tall and were becoming of marriageable age. Your breasts were formed and your hair had grown but you were naked and exposed. I passed by later and saw you were at the age of love and spread part of my garment over you to cover your nudity. I made a covenant with you with an oath – word of Yahweh – and you were mine. 9 Then I bathed you in water, I cleansed you of your blood and anointed you with oil. 10 I clothed you with embroidered cloth and put soft leather sandals on your feet. I dressed you in fine linen and covered you with silk. 11 I adorned you with jewelry, putting bracelets on your arms, a necklace around your neck 12 and a ring in your nose. 13 I gave you earrings and a magnificent crown for your head. You were adorned with gold and silver; your clothing was fine linen, silk and embroidered cloth. You were fed on finest flour, honey and oil; you became very beautiful and rose to be queen. 14 Your beauty was perfect and your renown spread through the nations, because of the splendor I had given you – word of Yahweh.
15 But you relied on your beauty; you trusted in your fame and you began to give yourself to every passerby like a pros titute. 16 With some of your garments you made your high places where you played the harlot (the like has never been and never will be). 17 With my silver and my gold and with the ornaments that were your splendor and which I had given you, you formed male idols and gave yourself to them. 18 With your embroidered garments you covered them and before them you have placed my oil and my incense.
19 My bread which I gave you, the fine flour, the oil and the honey with which I fed you, you offered as fragrant incense before them, word of Yahweh. 20 You took the sons and daughters you bore for me and sacrificed them as food to the idols. Was it not enough to prostitute your self? 21 Did you have to slaughter my children as an offering to your idols? 22 You revel in your abominations and prostitution without remembering the days of your youth when you were naked and ex posed, lying in your blood.
23 Woe, woe to you – declares Yahweh – for all this wicked ness! 24 You built your mounds and made your high places at every crossroad. 25 At the entrance to every road you built your lofty shrines; you defiled your beauty giving yourself to every passerby and always increasing your harlotry. 26 You gave yourself to the Egyptians, your large-limbed neighbors and provoked my anger with your in creasing promiscuity. 27 And I stretched out my hand against you and reduced your territory and gave you over to the mercy of your enemies, the daughters of the Philistines who were shocked by your filthy ways.
28 You played the harlot with the Assyrians as well because you were never satisfied. Yes, you played the harlot with them but you remained insatiable. 29 Then you multiplied your prostitutions in a land of merchants, Chaldea, and even with that you were not satisfied. 30 Ah! How my anger rose against you, word of Yahweh, as you did all that, the work of an accomplished harlot, 31 when you built your mounds at the entrance to every road and your shrines in every square! You were not like a prostitute because you scorned payments. 32 Adul te rous wife! You prefer strangers to your husband. 33 All prostitutes receive fees, but you gave gifts to your lovers, bribing them to come to you for your favors. 34 In your prostitution you have been different from other women; no one approaches you and whereas you offer payment no one gives you any. You are completely different.
35 Therefore harlot, hear the word of Yahweh! 36 This is what Yahweh says, “For having exposed yourself and uncovered your nakedness to your lovers and your abominable idols and because you have offered them the blood of your children, because of that, 37 I will gather all the lovers that found pleasure in you and all those you loved, as well as those you hated; I will assemble them from all around to come against you and I will strip you before them and they will see your nakedness. 38 I will judge you as adulterous women are judged and as those who shed blood and I will bring upon you the blood vengeance of anger and jealousy. 39 I will hand you over to them; they will tear down your mounds and shrines; they shall strip you of your clothes, taking from you the ornaments that were your splendor and leaving you naked and bare. 40 They shall bring a troop against you to stone you and gash you with swords. 41 Your houses will be burned by fire. Sentence shall be passed on you in the presence of many women. I will make you cease your prostitutions and you shall no longer be hired. 42 But when I have exhausted my fury against you, my jealousy shall leave you. I will be calm and no longer angry.
43 Because you did not remember the days of your youth and roused my anger with all these things, I in turn will make you responsible for all you did, word of Yahweh. Have you not added detestable deeds to all your other abominations?
44 Every maker of proverbs will say of you: “Like mother, like daugh ter!” 45 You are the daughter of your mother who loathed her husband and her children, and you are the sister of your sisters who loathed their husbands and their children. Your mother was a Hittite, your father an Amorite. 46 Your elder sister is Sama ria who with her daughters lives on your left, and your younger sister at your right is Sodom with her daughters. 47 You have followed their ways insanely and given yourself to the same abominations. You have been more corrupt than they in every way. 48 As I live, word of Yahweh, So dom your sister and her daughters have not done as you have done.
49 The sins of Sodom your sister were pride, over-indulgence in food, complacency and indifference to the poor and needy. 50 They were arrogant and did detestable things in my sight. For that reason I destroyed them as you have seen. 51 As for Samaria she has not committed half of your sins. Your abominations are more numerous than hers and in comparison make your sisters appear righteous. 52 So bear your disgrace, you who have committed such detestable sins that have provided excuses to your sisters! They appear to be more righteous than you are. Be ashamed and bear your disgrace since your sisters seem holy compared to you.
53 When I restore the fortunes of Sodom and her daughters, I will restore your own fortunes in their midst, 54 that you may bear your shame and confusion because they now feel they are better than you. 55 When your sister Sodom and her daughters and Samaria with hers will return to what they were before, you and your daughters will also return to what you were before. 56 Had not Sodom your sister become a byword for you in the time when you felt proud, 57 before your wickedness had become known? But now you have become the taunt of the daughters of Edom and all her neighbors, of the daughters of the Philistines who all around show their disgust for you. 58 You shall bear the consequences of your foul behavior and your abominations, word of Yahweh.
That you may be put to shame
59 For thus says Yahweh: “I will treat you as you deserve, you who despised the oath and broke the covenant. 60 But I will remember my covenant with you in the days of your youth and make in your favor an eternal covenant. 61 You will be mindful of your ways and be ashamed when I take your sisters, both the elder and the younger, and give them to you as daughters, without prejudice to my covenant with you. 62 For I will uphold my covenant with you and you will know that I am Yahweh, 63 so that you may remember, be ashamed and never open your mouth again because of your humiliation, when I have pardoned you for all you have done,” word of Yahweh.