Table of Contents
The Book of the Prophet Jeremie
The First Chapter
These are the Sermons of Jeremie the son of Helkiah the Priest, one of them that dwell at Anathoth in the land of Ben Jamin: when the Lord had first spoken to him, in the time of Josiah the son of Amon king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his kingdom: and so during unto the time of Jehoakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, and until the eleven years of Zedekiah the son of Josiah king of Judah were ended: when Jerusalem was taken, even in the fifth Month. The word of the Lord spoke thus unto me: Before I fashioned you in your mothers womb, I did know you: And or ever you was born, I sanctified you, and ordained you, to be a Prophet unto the people. Then said I: O' Lord God, I am unmete, (not creditable) for I am but young. And the Lord answered me thus: Say not so, I am too young: For you shall go to all that I shall send you unto, and whatsoever I command you, you shall you speak. Be not afraid of their faces, for I will be with you, to deliver you, says the Lord.
And with that, the Lord stretched out his hand, and touched my mouth, and said moreover unto me. Behold I put my words in your mouth, and this day I set you over the people and kingdoms: that you may root out, break off, destroy, and make waste: and that you may build up and plant. After this, the Lord spoke unto me saying: Jeremie, what see you? And I said: I see a waking rod. Then said the Lord: you have seen right, for I will watch diligently upon my word, to perform it.
It happened afterward, that the Lord spoke to me again, and said: What see you? And I said: I see a seesing pot, looking out of the north hitherward.
Then the Lord said unto me: Out of the north shall come a plague upon all the dwellers of the land. For lo, I will call all the officers of the kingdoms of the north (says the Lord) And they shall come, and every one shall set his feet in the gates of Jerusalem, and in all their walls round about and through all the cities of Judah. And through them shall I declare my judgment, upon all the wickedness of those men that have forsaken me: that have offered unto strange gods and worshipped the works of their own hands.
And therefore gird up your loins, arise, and tell them all, that I give you in commandment. Fear them not, I will not have you to be afraid of them. For behold, this day do I make you a strong fenced town, an iron pillar, and a wall of steel against the whole land, against the kings and mighty men of Judah, against the priests and people of the land. They shall fight against you, but they shall not be able to overcome you: for I am with you, to deliver you, says the Lord.
The Second Chapter
Moreover, the word of the Lord commanded me thus: Go your way, and cry in the ears Jerusalem, and say: Thus says the Lord: I remember you for the kindness of your youth, and because of your steadfast love: in that you follow me through the wilderness, in an untilled land. You Israel was hallowed unto the Lord, and so was his firstfruits. All they that devoured Israel, offended: misfortune fell upon them, says the Lord. Hear therefore the word of the Lord, O you house of Jacob, and all the generation of the house of Israel. Thus says the Lord unto you.
What unfaithfulness found your fathers in me, that they went so far away from me, falling to lightness, and being so vain? They thought not in their hearts: Where have we left the Lord, that brought us out of the land of Egypt, that led us through the wilderness, through a desert and rough land, through a dry and deadly land, yes a land that no man had gone through, and wherein no man had dwelt. And when I had brought you into a pleasant well builded land, that you might enjoy the fruits and all the commodities of the same: you went forth and defiled my land, and brought mine heritage to abomination.
The priests themselves said not once: Where is the Lord? They that have the law in their hands, know me not: The shepherds offend against me. The Prophets do service to Baal, and follow such things as bring them no profit.
Wherefore I am constrained (says the Lord) to make my complaint upon you, and upon your children. Go into the Isles of Cethim, and look well: and send unto Cedar, take diligent heed: and see, whether such things be done there, whether the Gentiles themselves deal so falsely and untruly with their gods, (which are no gods indeed) But my people has given over their high honor, for a thing that may not help them.
Be astonished (O you heavens) be afraid, and abashed at such a thing, says the Lord. For my people has done two evils. They have forsaken me the well of the water of life, and digged them pits, yes vile and broken pits, that hold no water. Is Israel a bond servant, or one of the household? Why is he then so spoiled? Why do they roar and cry upon him, as a lion? They have made his land waste, his cities are so burnt up, that there is no man dwelling in them. Yes the children of Noph and Taphnes have defiled your neck.
Come not this unto you, because you have forsaken the Lord your God, ever since he led you by the way? And what have you now to do in the street of Egypt? to drink foul water? Ether, what make you in the way of Assiria? To drink water of the flood? your own wickedness shall reprove you, and your turning away shall condemn you: that you may know and understand, how evil and hurtful a thing it is, that you have forsaken the Lord your God, and not feared him, says the Lord God of Hosts.
I have ever broken your yoke of old, and burst your bonds: yet say you, I will no more serve, but (like an harlot) you run about upon all high hills, and among all green trees where as I planted you out of noble grapes and good roots. How are you turned then in to a bitter, unfruitful, strange grape? Yes and that so sore: that though you wash you with *Nitrus and make yourself to favor with that sweet smelling herb of Borith: yet in my sight you are stained with your wickedness, says the Lord your God. *Nitrus = to shake tremble, loose, walls. to be loose of the walls (hedge of the Lord) replaced by the walls of false teachings. Borith = Berith meaning a covenant between men.( not of God) RN
Say not now: I am not unclean, and I have not followed strange Gods. Look upon your own ways in the woods, valleys and dens: so shall you know, what you have done. You are like a swift Dromedary, that goes easily his way: and your wantonness is like a wild Ass, that uses the wilderness, and that snuffs and blows at his will. Who can tame you? All they that seek you, shall not fail, but find you in your own uncleanness. You keep your foot from nakedness, and your throat from thirst, and think thus in yourself: tush: I will take no sorrow, I will love the strange gods, and hang upon them.
Like as a thief that is taken with the deed comes to shame, even so is the house of Israel come to confusion: the common people, their kings and rulers, their priests and prophets. For they say to a stock, you are my father, and to a stone: you have begotten me, yes they have turned their back upon me, and not their face. But in the time of their trouble, when they say: stand up, help us, I shall answer them: Where are now your gods, that you have made you? bid them stand up, and help you in the time of need? For look how many cities you have (O Judah) so many gods have you also.
Wherefore then will you go to law with me, seeing you are all sinners against me, says the Lord? In is but lost labor, that I smite your children, for they receive not my correction. Your own sword devours your prophets, like a devouring lion. If you be the people of the Lord, then hearken unto his word: Am I then become a wilderness unto the people of Israel? or a land that has no light? Wherefore says my people then: we are fallen off, and we will come no more unto you? does a maiden forget her raiment, or a bride her stomacher? And does my people forget me so long? Why boasts you your ways so highly (to obtain favor there through) when you have yet stained them with blasphemies?
Upon your wings is found the blood of poor and innocent people, and that not in corners and holes only, but openly in all these places. Yet dare you say: I am guiltless: Tush, his wrath can not come upon me. Behold, I will reason with you because you dare say: I have not offended. O how evil will it be for you, to abide it: when it shall be known, how often you have gone backward? For you shall be confounded, as well of Egypt, as of the Assirians: yes you shall go your way from them, and smite your hands together upon your head. Because the lord shall bring that confidence and hope of your to naught, and you shall not prosper with all.
The Third Chapter
Commonly, when a man puts away his wife, and she goes from him, and marries with another, then the question is: should he restore unto her any more after that? Is not this field then defiled and unclean? But as for you, you have played the harlot with many lovers, yet turn again to me, says the Lord. Lift up your eyes on every side, and look, if you be not defiled. You have waited for them in the streets, and as a murderer in the wilderness. Through your whoredoms and blasphemes, the land is defiled.
This is the cause, that the rain and evening dew has ceased. You had gotten you an whores forehead, and can not be ashamed. Else would you say unto me: O my father, you are he that have brought me up, and led me from my youth: Will you then put me away and cast me off for ever? Or will you withdraw yourself clean from me? Nevertheless, you speak such words, but you are ever doing worse and worse.
The Lord said also unto me: in the time of Josiah the king: have you seen what that shrinking Israel has done? how she has run upon all the high hills, and among all thick trees, and there played the harlot: have you seen also (when she had done all this) how I said unto her: that she should turn again unto me, and yet she is not returned? Judah that unfaithful sister of hers also saw this: Namely, that after I had seen the *advoutry of the stinking harlot Israel, I put her away, and give her a bill of divorcement. *advouterer: prefix "a" meaning not or without, devout: devotion; plain hearted to God only see James 2 for adultery
For all this, her unfaithful sister Judah was not ashamed, but went back and played the harlot also. Yes and the noise of her whoredom has defiled the whole land. For she has committed her *advoutry with stones and with stocks. *here we see the truth of this word, as these are devoted to any thing but our living God. see James 2 for adultery
Nevertheless, her unfaithful sister Judah is not turned unto me again with her whole heart, but *feignedly (pretended affection), says the Lord. And the Lord said unto me. The backslider Israel is more righteous, then the unfaithful Judah: and therefore go preach these words toward the north, and say: You shrinking Israel, turns again (says the Lord) and I will not turn my face from you, for I am merciful, says the Lord, and I will not always bare displeasure against you: but on this condition, that you know your great blaspheme: Namely, that you have unfaithfully forsaken the Lord your God, and have made yourself partaker of strange Gods under all green trees, but have no will to hear my voice, says the Lord.
O you shrinking children, turn again, says the Lord: and I will be married with you. For I will take one out of the city, and two out of one generation from among you, and bring you out of Sion: and I will give you herdsmen after my own mind, which shall feed you with learning and wisdom. Moreover, when you be increased and multiplied in the land, then (says the Lord) there shall no more boast be made of the ark of the Lords Testament: No man shall think upon it, neither shall any man make mention of it: for from that place forth it shall neither be visited, nor honored with gifts.
Then shall Jerusalem be called the Lords seat and all Heathen shall be gathered unto it, for the name of the Lords sake, which shall be set up in Jerusalem. And from that time forth, they shall follow no more the imagination of their own froward heart.
Then those that be of the house of Judah shall go into the house of Israel: and they shall come together out of the North, into the same land that I have gave their fathers. I have showed also, how I took you up being but a child, and give you a pleasant land for your heritage, yes and a goodly Hosts of the Heathen: and how I commanded you, that you should call me father only, and not to shrink from me.
But like as a woman fails her lover, so are you unfaithful to me (O you house of Israel) says the Lord. And therefore the voice of the children of Israel was heard on every side, weeping and wailing: for they have defiled their way, and forgotten God their Lord.
O you shrinking children, turn again (saying: lo, we are yours, for you are the Lord our God:) And so I will heal your backturnings. The hills fall, and all the high pride of the mountains, but the health of Israel stands only upon God our Lord.
Confusion has devoured our fathers labor from our youth up: yes their sheep and bullocks, their sons and daughters. So do we also sleep in our confusion, and shame covers us: for we and our fathers from our youth up unto this day have sinned against the Lord our God, and have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God.
The Fourth Chapter
O Israel, if you will turn you, then turn unto me, says the Lord. And if you will put away your abominations out of my sight, you shall not be moved: And shall swear: The Lord lives: in truth, in equity and righteousness: and all people shall be fortuable and joyful in him. For thus says the Lord, to all Judah and Jerusalem: plow your land, and sow not among the thorns.
Be circumcised in the Lord, and cut away the foreskins of your heart, all you of Judah, and all the indwellers of Jerusalem: that my indignation break not out like fire and kindle, so that no man can quench it, because of the wickedness of your imaginations.
Preach in Judah and Jerusalem, cry out and speak: Blow the trumpets in the land, cry that every man may hear, and say: Gather you together, and we will go into the strong cities. Set up the token in Sion, speed you, and make no tarrying: for I will bring a great plague, and a great destruction from the north. For the spoiler of the Gentiles is broken up from his place, as a lion out of his den, that he may make the land waste, and destroy the cities, so that no man may dwell therin. Wherefore gird yourselves about with sackcloth, mourn and weep for the fearful wrath of the Lord shall not be withdrawn from you.
At the same time (says the Lord) the heart of the kings and of the princes shall be gone, the priests shall be astonished, and the prophets shall be sore afraid. Then said I, O' Lord God, have you deceived this people and Jerusalem, saying: you shall have peace, and now the sword goes through their lives? Then shall it be said to the people and to Jerusalem: there comes a warm wind from the north through the way of my people, but neither to fan nor to cleanse.
After that shall there come unto me a strong wind, and then will I give sentence upon them. For lo, he comes down as a cloud, and his chariots are like a stormy wind: his horsemen are swifter than the Eagle. Woe unto us, for we are destroyed. O Jerusalem, wash your heart from wickedness, that you may be helped. How long shall your noisesome thoughts remain with you?
For a voice from Dan and form the hill of Ephraim speaks out, and tells of a destruction. Behold the Heathen give Jerusalem a warning, and preach unto her, that her destroyers are coming from far countries. They tell the cities of Juda the same also, they shall give them warning in every place, like as watchmen in the field. For they have provoked me to wrath, says the Lord.
Thy ways and your thoughts, have brought you unto this, this is your own wickedness and disobedience, that has possessed your heart: Ah my belly, Ah my belly (shall you cry) how is my heart so sore? my heart pants within me, I cannot be still, for I have heard the crying of the trumpets, and the peals of war.
They cry murder upon murder, the whole land shall perish. Immediately my tents were destroyed, and my hangings in the twinkling of an eye. How long shall I see the tokens of war, and hear the noise of the trumpets.
Nevertheless this shall come upon them because my people is become foolish, and has utterly no understanding. They are the children of foolishness, and without any discretion. To do evil, they have wit enough: but to do well, they have no wisdom. I have looked upon the earth, and see, it is waste and void. I looked toward heaven, and it had no shine.
I beheld the mountains, and they tremble, and all the hills were in fear. I looked about me, and there was nobody, and all the birds of the air were away. I marked well, and the plowed field was become waste: yes all their cities were broken down at the presence of the Lord, and indignation of his wrath.
For thus has the Lord said: The whole land shall be desolate, yet will I not have then done. And therefore let the earth mourn, and let the heaven be sorry above: for the things that I have purposed and taken upon me to do, shall not repent me, and I will not go from it. The whole land shall flee, for the noise of the horsemen and bowmen: they shall run into dens in to woods, and climb up the rocks. All the cities shall be void, and no man dwelling therein.
What will you now do, you being destroyed? For though you clothe yourself with scarlet, and deck you with gold: though you paint your face with colors, yet shall trim yourself in vain.
For those that hitherto have been your great favorers, shall abhor you, and go about to slay you. For (me think) I hear a noise, like as it were of a woman travailing, or one laboring of her first child: Even the voice of the daughter Sion, that casts out her arms, and sorrows, saying: Ah woe is me, how sore vexed and faint is my heart, for them that are slain?
The Fifth Chapter
Look through Jerusalem, behold and see: Seek through her streets also within, if you can find one man, that does equal and right, or that labors to be faithful: and I shall spare him (says the Lord) For though they can say: the Lord lives, yet do they swear to deceive: Where as you (O' Lord) look only upon faith and truth.
You have scourged them, but they took no repentance: you have corrected them for amendment, but they refused your correction. They made their faces harder than stone, and would not amend.
Therefore thought I in myself: peradventure (perhaps, perchance) they are so simple and foolish, that they know nothing of the Lords way, and judgments of our God. Therefore will I go unto their heads and rulers, and talk with them: if they know the way of the Lord, and the judgments of our God. But these (in like manner) have broken the yoke, and burst the bonds in sunder.
Wherefore a lion out of the wood shall hurt them, and a wolf in the evening shall destroy them. The cat of the mountain shall lie lurking by their cities, to tare in pieces all of them, that come thereout. For their offenses are many, and their departing way is great. Should I then for all this have mercy upon you? your children have forsaken me, and sworn by them that are no gods. And albeit (even if, even though) they were bound to me in marriage, yet they fell to advoutry, and hunted harlots houses.*advouterer: prefix "a" meaning not or without, devout: devotion; plain hearted to God, here devoted to the flesh. see James 2 for adultery
In the desire of uncleanly lust they are become like the stoned horse, every man neighed at his neighbors wife: Should I not correct this? says the Lord.
Should I not be avenged of every people, that is like unto this? Climb up upon their walls and beat them down, but destroy them not utterly. Cut off their branches because they are not the Lords. For unfaithfully has the house of Israel and Judah forsaken me, says the Lord. They have denied the Lord, and said: It is not he. Tush, there shall no misfortune come upon us, we shall see neither sword nor hunger. As for the warning of the Prophets, they take it but for wind, yes there is none of these, which will tell them, that such things shall happen unto them.
Wherefore thus says the Lord God of Hosts: Because you speak such words, behold: The words that are in your mouth will I turn to fire, and make the people to be wood, that it may consume them.
Lo, I will bring a people upon you from far, O house of Israel,(says the Lord) a mighty people, an old people, a people whos speech you know not, neither understands what they say. Their arrows are sudden death, yes they themselves be very giants. This people shall eat up your fruit and your meat, yes they shall devour your sons and your daughters, your sheep and your bullocks.
They shall eat up your grapes and figs. As for your strong and well fenced cities, wherein you did trust, they shall destroy them with the sword. Nevertheless I will not then have done with you, says the Lord. But if they say: wherefore does the Lord our God all this unto us?
Then answer them: because, that like as you have forsaken me, and served strange gods in your land, even so shall you serve other gods also in a strange land. Preach this unto the house of Jacob, and cry it out in Judah, and say thus: Hear this (you foolish and undiscrete people) you have eyes, but you see not: ears have ye, but hear not.
Fear you not me, says the Lord? Are you not ashamed, to look me in the face? which bind the sea with the sand, so that it can not pass its bounds: for you it rage, yet it can do nothing, and though the waves thereof do swell, yet may they not go over.
But this people has a false and *obstinate heart, they are departed and gone away from me. They think not in their hearts: O let us fear the Lord our God, that gives us rain, early and late, when need is: which keeps ever still the harvest for us yearly. *obstinate= Stubbornly adhering to an attitude, an opinion, or a course of action;
Nevertheless your misdeeds have turned these from you, and your sins have robbed you hereof. For among my people are found wicked persons, that privately lay snares and wait for me, to take them and destroy them. And like as a net is full of birds, so are their houses full of that which they have gotten with falsehood and deceit. Hereof comes their great substance and riches, hereof they are fat and wealthy, and blasphemies. They minister not the law, they make no end of the fatherless cause, they judge not the poor according to equity.
Should I not punish these things, says the Lord? should I not be avenged of all such people, as these be? Horrible and grievous things are done in the land.
The Prophets teach falsely, and the priests follow them, and my people has pleasure therin. What will become thereof at the last.
The Sixth Chapter
Come out of Jerusalem, you strong children of Ben Jamin: blow up the trumpets you Tecuites, set up a token unto Bethcarem, for a plague and great misery peeps out from the North. Jerusalem = "teaching of peace" Benjamin = "son of the right hand" Tekoite 5, = see Tekoa "trumpet blast" 5 = "God given" Bethhaccerem = "house of the vineyard" North = secret, hidden ones, esteemed, hide from discovery, Hoshama = "whom Jehovah hears" from the Hebrew . RN
I will likened the daughter of Sion to a fair and tender woman, and to her will come the shepherds with their flocks. Their tents shall they shall pitch round about her, and every one shall feed them that are under his hand. Make battle against her (shall they say) Arise, let us go up, while it is yet day.
Alas the day goes away, and the night shadows fall down: Arise, let us go up by night, and destroy her strongholds, for thus has the Lord of Hosts commanded. Hew down her trees, and set up bulwarks against Jerusalem. This is the city that must be punished, for in her is all maliciousness. Like as a conduit abounds in water, even so this city abounds in wickedness. Robbery and unrighteousness is heard in her, sorrow and wounds are ever there in my sight. Amend you (O Jerusalem) least I withdraw my heart from you, and make you desolate: and your land also, that no man dwell in it. For thus says the Lord of Hosts: The residue of Israel shall be gathered, as the remanent of grapes.
And therefore turn your hand again in to the basket, like a grape gatherer. But unto whom shall I speak, whom shall I warn, that he may take heed? Their ears are so uncircumcised, that they may not hear.
Behold, they take the word of God but for scorn, and have no *lust (deep lov) thereto. And therefore I am so full of your indignation O' Lord, that I may suffer no longer. Shed out your wrath upon the children that are without, and upon all young men. Yes the man must be taken prisoner with the wife, and the aged with the cripple. Their houses with their lands and wives shall be turned unto strangers, when I stretch out mine hand upon the inhabitors of this land, says the Lord. For from the least to the most, they hang all upon covetousness: and from the prophet unto the priest, they go all about with falsehood and lies.
And beside that, they heal the hurt of my people with sweet words, saying peace, peace, when there is no peace at all. Therefore they must be ashamed, for they have committed abomination. But how could they be ashamed, when they know nothing, neither of shame or good nurture? Therefore they shall fall among the slain, and in the hour when I shall visit them, they shall be brought down, says the Lord.
Thus says the Lord: go into the streets, consider and make inquisition for the old way: and if it be the good and right way: then go therin, that you may find rest for your souls. But if they say: we will not walk therin, and I will set watchmen over you, and therefore take heed unto the voice of the trumpet. But they say: we will not take heed. Hear therefore you Gentiles, and you congregation shall know, what I have devised for them. Hear you earth also: behold, I will cause a plague upon this people, even the fruit of their own imaginations.
For they have not been obedient unto my words and my law, but abhorred them. Wherefore bring you me incense from Saba, and sweet smelling Calamus from far countries? Your burnt offerings displease me, and I rejoice not in your sacrifices.
And therefore thus says the Lord: Behold, I will make this people fall, and there shall fall from among them the father with the children, one neighbor shall perish with another.
Moreover thus says the Lord: Behold, there shall come a people from the North, and a great people shall rise from the ends of the earth, with bows and with darts shall they be weaponed: It is a rough an fierce people, an unmerciful people: their voice roars like the sea, they ride upon horses well appointed to the battle against you, O daughter Sion. Then shall this cry be heard: Our arms are feeble, heaviness an sorrow is come upon us, as upon a woman travailing with child. No man goes forth in to the field, no man come upon the high street: for the sword and fear of the enemy shall be on every side.
Wherefore gird you a sackcloth about you (O daughter of my people) sprinkle yourself with ashes, mourn and weep bitterly, as upon the only beloved son: for the destroyer shall suddenly fall upon us. You have I set as a prover of my hard people, to seek out and try their ways. For they are all unfaithful and fallen away, they hang upon filthy lucre, they are clean brass and iron, for they have hurt and destroyed every man. The bellows are burnt in the fire, the lead is consumed, the melter melts in vain, for the evil is not taken away from them. Therefore shall they be called naughty silver, because the Lord has cast them out.
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