Why standest thou afar off, O LORD? Why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble? The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined. For the wicked boasts of his heart’s desire, and blesses the covetous, whom the LORD abhors. The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts. His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight: as for all his enemies, he puffs at them. He has said in his heart, I shall not be moved: for I shall never be in adversity. His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud: under his tongue is mischief and vanity. He sits in the lurking places of the villages: in the secret places doth he murder the innocent: his eyes are privily set against the poor. He lies in wait secretly as a lion in his den: he lies in wait to catch the poor: he doth catch the poor, when he draws him into his net. He crouches, and humbles himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones. He has said in his heart, God has forgotten: he hides his face; he will never see it.
Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up thy hand: forget not the humble. Wherefore doth the wicked contemn God? He has said in his heart, Thou wilt not require it. Thou hast seen it; for thou beholdest mischief and spite, to requite it with thy hand: the poor commits himself unto thee; thou art the helper of the fatherless. Break thou the arm of the wicked and the evil man: seek out his wickedness till thou find none. The LORD is King for ever and ever: the heathen are perished out of his land. LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear: to judge the fatherless and the oppressed, that the man of the earth may no more oppress.
The word which came unto Jeremiah from Jehovah, when king Zedekiah sent unto him Pashur the son of Melchiah, and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah the priest, saying, Enquire, I pray thee, of Jehovah for us; for Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon maketh war against us; if so be that Jehovah will deal with us according to all his wondrous works, that he may go up from us.
Then said Jeremiah unto them, Thus shall ye say to Zedekiah: Thus saith Jehovah God of Israel; Behold, I will turn back the weapons of war that are in your hands, wherewith ye fight against the king of Babylon, and against the Chaldeans, which besiege you without the walls, and I will assemble them into the midst of this city. And I myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and with a strong arm, even in anger, and in fury, and in great wrath. And I will smite the inhabitants of this city, both man and beast: they shall die of a great pestilence. And afterward, saith Jehovah, I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, and his servants, and the people, and such as are left in this city from the pestilence, from the sword, and from the famine, into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those that seek their life: and he shall smite them with the edge of the sword; he shall not spare them, neither have pity, nor have mercy.
And unto this people thou shalt say, Thus saith Jehovah; Behold, I set before you the way of life, and the way of death. He that abideth in this city shall die by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence: but he that goeth out, and falleth to the Chaldeans that besiege you, he shall live, and his life shall be unto him for a prey. For I have set my face against this city for evil, and not for good, saith Jehovah: it shall be given into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall burn it with fire.
And touching the house of the king of Judah, say, Hear ye the word of Jehovah; O house of David, thus saith Jehovah,
Execute judgment in the morning, and deliver him that is spoiled out of the hand of the oppressor, lest my fury go out like fire, and burn that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings. Behold, I am against thee, O inhabitant of the valley, and rock of the plain, saith Jehovah; which say, Who shall come down against us? or who shall enter into our habitations? But I will punish you according to the fruit of your doings, saith Jehovah: and I will kindle a fire in the forest thereof, and it shall devour all things round about it.
Thus saith Jehovah; Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and speak there this word, And say, Hear the word of Jehovah, O king of Judah, that sittest upon the throne of David, thou, and thy servants, and thy people that enter in by these gates: Thus saith Jehovah; Execute ye judgment and righteousness, and deliver the spoiled out of the hand of the oppressor: and do no wrong, do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, nor the widow, neither shed innocent blood in this place. For if ye do this thing indeed, then shall there enter in by the gates of this house kings sitting upon the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, he, and his servants, and his people. But if ye will not hear these words, I swear by myself, saith Jehovah, that this house shall become a desolation. For thus saith Jehovah unto the king’s house of Judah; Thou art Gilead unto me, and the head of Lebanon: yet surely I will make thee a wilderness, and cities which are not inhabited. And I will prepare destroyers against thee, every one with his weapons: and they shall cut down thy choice cedars, and cast them into the fire. And many nations shall pass by this city, and they shall say every man to his neighbour, Wherefore hath Jehovah done thus unto this great city? Then they shall answer, Because they have forsaken the covenant of Jehovah their God, and worshipped other gods, and served them.
Weep ye not for the dead, neither bemoan him: but weep sore for him that goeth away: for he shall return no more, nor see his native country. For thus saith Jehovah touching Shallum the son of Josiah king of Judah, which reigned instead of Josiah his father, which went forth out of this place; He shall not return thither any more: But he shall die in the place whither they have led him captive, and shall see this land no more.
Woe unto him that buildeth his house by unrighteousness, and his chambers by wrong; that useth his neighbour’s service without wages, and giveth him not for his work; That saith, I will build me a wide house and large chambers, and cutteth him out windows; and it is cieled with cedar, and painted with vermilion. Shalt thou reign, because thou closest thyself in cedar? did not thy father eat and drink, and do judgment and justice, and then it was well with him? He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well with him: was not this to know me? saith Jehovah. But thine eyes and thine heart are not but for thy covetousness, and for to shed innocent blood, and for oppression, and for violence, to do it. Therefore thus saith Jehovah concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah;
They shall not lament for him, saying, Ah my brother! or, Ah sister! they shall not lament for him, saying, Ah lord! or, Ah his glory! He shall be buried with the burial of an ass, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jerusalem.
Go up to Lebanon, and cry; and lift up thy voice in Bashan, and cry from the passages: for all thy lovers are destroyed. I spake unto thee in thy prosperity; but thou saidst, I will not hear. This hath been thy manner from thy youth, that thou obeyedst not my voice. The wind shall eat up all thy pastors, and thy lovers shall go into captivity: surely then shalt thou be ashamed and confounded for all thy wickedness. O inhabitant of Lebanon, that makest thy nest in the cedars, how gracious shalt thou be when pangs come upon thee, the pain as of a woman in travail!
As I live, saith Jehovah, though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah were the signet upon my right hand, yet would I pluck thee thence; And I will give thee into the hand of them that seek thy life, and into the hand of them whose face thou fearest, even into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of the Chaldeans. And I will cast thee out, and thy mother that bare thee, into another country, where ye were not born; and there shall ye die. But to the land whereunto they desire to return, thither shall they not return.
Is this man Coniah a despised broken idol? is he a vessel wherein is no pleasure? wherefore are they cast out, he and his seed, and are cast into a land which they know not? O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of Jehovah. Thus saith Jehovah, Write ye this man childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days: for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah.
A wise son hears his father’s instruction: but a scorner hears not rebuke.
A man shall eat good by the fruit of his mouth: but the soul of the transgressors shall eat violence.
He that keeps his mouth keeps his life: but he that opens wide his lips shall have destruction.
The soul of the sluggard desires, and has nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat.
A righteous man hates lying: but a wicked man is loathsome, and comes to shame.
Righteousness keeps him that is upright in the way: but wickedness overthrows the sinner.
There is that makes himself rich, yet has nothing: there is that makes himself poor, yet has great riches.
The ransom of a man’s life are his riches: but the poor hears not rebuke.
The light of the righteous rejoices: but the lamp of the wicked shall be put out.
Only by pride comes contention: but with the well advised is wisdom.
Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathers by labor shall increase.
Hope deferred makes the heart sick: but when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.
Whoso despises the word shall be destroyed: but he that fears the commandment shall be rewarded.
The law of the wise is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.
Good understanding gives favor: but the way of transgressors is hard.
Every prudent man deals with knowledge: but a fool lays open his folly.
A wicked messenger falls into mischief: but a faithful ambassador is health.
Poverty and shame shall be to him that refuses instruction: but he that regards reproof shall be honored.
The desire accomplished is sweet to the soul: but it is abomination to fools to depart from evil.
He that walks with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.
Evil pursues sinners: but to the righteous good shall be repaid.
A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children: and the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just.
Much food is in the tillage of the poor: but there is that is destroyed for want of judgment.
He that spares his rod hates his son: but he that loves him chastens him betimes.
The righteous eats to the satisfying of his soul: but the belly of the wicked shall want.