The Bible in Its Traditions

Jeremiah 23:9–40

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Concerning the prophets. My heart within me is broken, all my bones shake; I am like a drunken man, and like a man whom wine hath overcome; because of YHWH, and because of His holy words.

My heart is broken within me; all my bones are shaken: I am become as a broken-down man, and as a man overcome with wine, because of the Lord, and because of the excellence of his glory.

To the prophets: “My heart is crushed within me. All my bones are trembling. I have become like an inebriated man, and like a man maddened by wine, before the face of the Lord, and before the face of his holy words.

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10  For the land is full of adulterers; for because of swearing the land mourneth, the pastures of the wilderness are dried up; and their course is evil, and their force is not right.

10  For because of these things the land mourns; the pastures of the wilderness are dried up; and their course is become evil, and so also their strength.

10  For the earth is full of adulterers! And the earth has mourned before the face of evil talk. The plains of the desert have dried up, and their course has become hazardous, and their firmness has become uneven.”

11  For both prophet and priest are ungodly; yea, in My house have I found their wickedness, saith YHWH.

11  For priest and prophet are defiled; and I have seen their iniquities in my house.

11  “For both the prophet and the priest have become polluted, and I have found their wickedness within my own house, says the Lord.

12  Wherefore their way shall be unto them as slippery places in the darkness, they shall be thrust, and fall therein; for I will bring evil upon them, even the year of their visitation, saith YHWH.

12  Therefore let their way be to them slippery and dark: and they shall be tripped up and fall in it: for I will bring evils upon them, in the year of their visitation.

12  For this reason, their way will be like a slippery path in the dark. For they will be impelled forward, and they will fall in it. For I will bring evils over them, in the year of their visitation, says the Lord.

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13  And I have seen unseemliness in the prophets of Samaria: they prophesied by Baal, and caused My people Israel to err.

13  And in the prophets of Samaria I have seen lawless deeds; they prophesied by Baal, and led my people Israel astray.

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14  But in the prophets of Jerusalem I have seen a horrible thing: they commit adultery, and walk in lies, and they strengthen the hands of evil-doers, that none doth return from his wickedness; they are all of them become unto Me as Sodom, and the inhabitants thereof as Gomorrah.

14  And in the prophets of Jerusalem, I have seen the likeness of adulterers and the path of falsehood. And they have strengthened the hands of the wicked, so that each one would not convert from his malice. They have all become to me like Sodom, and its inhabitants have become like Gomorrah.”

14  I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem folly; they commit adultery and walk in lies; they strengthen also the hands of their friends, so that no one turns from his evil way; they are all of them to me like Sodom, and its inhabitants like Gomorrah.

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15  Therefore thus saith YHWH of hosts concerning the prophets: Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, and make them drink the water of gall; for from the prophets of Jerusalem is ungodliness gone forth into all the land.

15  Because of this, thus says the Lord of hosts to the prophets: “Behold, I will feed them absinthe, and I will give them gall to drink. For from the prophets of Jerusalem corruption has gone forth over the entire earth.”

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16  Thus saith YHWH of hosts: Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you, they lead you unto vanity; they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the YHWH.

16  Thus saith the Lord Almighty, Hearken not to the words of the prophets: for they frame a vain vision for themselves; they speak from their own heart, and not from the mouth of the Lord.

16  Thus says the Lord of hosts: “Do not choose to listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you and deceive you. They speak a vision from their own heart, and not from the mouth of the Lord.

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17  They say continually unto them that despise Me: 'YHWH hath said: Ye shall have peace'; and unto every one that walketh in the stubbornness of his own heart they say: 'No evil shall come upon you';

17  They say to them that reject the word of the Lord, There shall be peace to you; and to all that walk after their own lusts, and to everyone that walks in the error of his heart, they have said, No evil shall come upon thee.

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18  For who hath stood in the council of YHWH, that he should perceive and hear His word? Who hath attended to His word, and heard it?

18  For who has stood in the counsel of the Lord, and seen his word? who has hearkened, and heard?

18  For who has been present in the counsel of the Lord, and who has seen and heard his word? Who has considered his word and heard it?

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19  Behold, a storm of YHWH is gone forth in fury, yea, a whirling storm; it shall whirl upon the head of the wicked.

19  Behold, there is an earthquake from the Lord, and anger proceeds to a convulsion, it shall come violently upon the ungodly.

19  Behold, the whirlwind of the Lord’s indignation will go forth, and a tempest will break out; it will overwhelm the head of the impious.

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20  The anger of YHWH shall not return, until He have executed, and till He have performed the purposes of His heart; in the end of days ye shall consider it perfectly.

20  And the Lord’s wrath shall return no more, until he have accomplished it, and until he have established it, according to the purpose of his heart: at the end of the days they shall understand it.

20  The fury of the Lord will not return until it succeeds, and until it completes the plan of his heart. In the last days, you will understand this counsel.

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21  I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran; I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.

21  I sent not the prophets, yet they ran: neither spoke I to them, yet they prophesied.

21  “I did not send these prophets, yet they hurry forward. I was not speaking to them, yet they were prophesying.

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22  But if they have stood in My council, then let them cause My people to hear My words, and turn them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings.

22  If they had stood in my counsel, and if I had made my words known to my people, certainly I would have turned them away from their evil ways and from their most wicked plans.

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23  Am I a God near at hand, saith YHWH, and not a God afar off?

23  I am a God nigh at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God afar off.

23  Do you not realize that I am a God close by, says the Lord, and not a God far away?

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24  Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith YHWH. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the YHWH.

24  If a man is hidden in concealed places, do I not see him, says the Lord? Do I not fill up heaven and earth, says the Lord?

24  If any man should hide himself in secret places, I will see him, says the LORD; behold, heaven and earth are filled with me, says the LORD of hosts.

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25  I have heard what the prophets have said, that prophesy lies in My name, saying: 'I have dreamed, I have dreamed.'

26  How long shall this be? Is it in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies, and the prophets of the deceit of their own heart?

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27  That think to cause My people to forget My name by their dreams which they tell every man to his neighbour, as their fathers forgot My name for Baal.

27  who devise that men may forget my law by their dreams, which they have told every one to his neighbour, as their fathers forgot my name in the worship of Baal.

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28  The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream; and he that hath My word; let him speak My word faithfully. What hath the straw to do with the wheat? saith YHWH.

28  The prophet who has a dream, let him tell his dream; and he in whom is my word spoken to him, let him tell my word truly: what is the chaff to the corn? so are my words, saith the Lord.

28  The prophet who sees a dream, let him tell a dream; but he who has my words, let him speak my words faithfully. Why do you mix chaff with the wheat? says the LORD.

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29  Is not My word like as fire? saith YHWH; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?

29  Behold, are not my words as fire? saith the Lord; and as an axe cutting the rock?

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30  Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets, saith YHWH, that steal My words every one from his neighbour.

30  Behold, I am therefore against the prophets, saith the Lord God, that steal my words every one from his neighbour.

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31  Behold, I am against the prophets, saith YHWH, that use their tongues and say: 'He saith.'

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32  Behold, I am against them that prophesy lying dreams, saith YHWH, and do tell them, and cause My people to err by their lies, and by their wantonness; yet I sent them not, nor commanded them; neither can they profit this people at all, saith the YHWH.

32  Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets that prophesy false dreams, and have not told them truly, and have caused my people to err by their lies, and by their errors; yet I sent them not, and commanded them not; therefore, they shall not profit this people at all.

32  Behold, I am against the prophets, who dream what is false, says the Lord; who explain and so seduce my people with their falsehoods and with their miracles, though I did not send them, nor did I command them. They have offer nothing beneficial to this people, says the Lord.

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33  And when this people, or the prophet, or a priest, shall ask thee, saying: 'What is the burden of YHWH?' then shalt thou say unto them: 'What burden! I will cast you off, saith the YHWH.'

33  Therefore, if this people, or a prophet, or a priest questions you, saying, ‘What is the burden of the Lord?’ you shall say to them, ‘You are the burden. And certainly I will cast you away, says the Lord.’

33  land when this people, or a prophet or a priest, shall ask you, and say to you, What is the word of the LORD? you shall say to them, This is the word of the LORD: I will utterly uproot you, says the LORD.

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34  And as for the prophet, and the priest, and the people, that shall say: 'The burden of YHWH', I will even punish that man and his house.

34  As for the prophet, and the priests, and the people, who shall say, The burden of the Lord, I will even take vengeance on that man, and on his house.

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35  Thus shall ye say every one to his neighbour, and every one to his brother: 'What hath YHWH answered?' and: 'What hath the YHWH spoken?'

35  And then you will speak in this way, each one to his neighbor and to his brother: ‘What has the Lord answered? And what has the Lord said?’

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36  And the burden of YHWH shall ye mention no more; for every man's own word shall be his burden; and would ye pervert the words of the living God, of the YHWH of hosts our God?

36  And do ye name no more the burden of the Lord; for his own word shall be a man’s burden.

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37  Thus shalt thou say to the prophet: 'What hath YHWH answered thee?' and: 'What hath the YHWH spoken?'

37  But wherefore, say ye, has the Lord our God spoken?

37  And then you will speak in this way to the prophet: ‘What has the Lord answered you? And what has the Lord spoken?’

38  But if ye say: 'The burden of YHWH'; therefore thus saith the YHWH: Because ye say this word: 'The burden of the LORD', and I have sent unto you, saying: 'Ye shall not say: The burden of the LORD';

38  Therefore thus saith the Lord our God; Because ye have spoken this word, The burden of the Lord, and I sent to you, saying, ye shall not say, The burden of the Lord;

38  But if you say, ‘The burden of the Lord!’ then because of this, thus says the Lord: Since you have spoken this word, ‘The burden of the Lord!’ though I sent to you telling you not to say: ‘The burden of the Lord,’

39  therefore, behold, I will utterly tear you out, and I will cast you off, and the city that I gave unto you and to your fathers, away from My presence;

39  therefore, behold, I will seize, and dash down you and the city which I gave to you and your fathers.

39  because of this, behold, I will take you away, like a burden, and I will forsake you, as well as the city that I gave to you and to your fathers, before my face.

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40  and I will bring an everlasting reproach upon you, and a perpetual shame, which shall not be forgotten.

40  And I will give you over to an everlasting reproach and an eternal disgrace, which shall never be wiped away into oblivion.”