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Jehovah’s Witnesses

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Jeremiah 5:1-31

5*  Range through the streets of Jerusalem, look and learn, and search her squares, whether you find a man, whether there is one that does the right thing, that aims at good faith, and I should forgive it, quoth Jehovah. 2*  They say “By Jehovah”; they are sworn to lies after all; 3  Jehovah, are your eyes not on the side of good faith? You struck them, but they were not put out of health; you stamped them out, they refused to take a lesson; they made their faces stonier than a cliff, they refused to turn back. 4  But I thought “They are just poor folks, they make fools of themselves because they do not know Jehovah’s way, the law of their God; 5  I will go to the big men and talk with them, because they know Jehovah’s way, the law of their God”; they themselves had together broken yoke and snapped tether. 6  Therefore a lion out of badlands strikes them down, desert wolves make havoc of them, a leopard is watching by their cities—everyone who comes out of them falls a prey; because their rebellions are many and their apostasies numerous. 7*  On what ground should I forgive you? your sons have left me and sworn by what are not gods, and I gave them full meals and they took to adultery and colonized themselves in a prostitute’s house. 8*  They became foddered teaser-ponies, each neighing after its neighbor’s wife. 9*  Am I not to punish these things, quoth Jehovah, or not to have my revenge on such a nation as this? 10**  Go up among its trellises and ravage, but do not give the finishing stroke; take off its tendrils, because they do not belong to Jehovah; 11  for the house of Israel and the house of Judah have played me false, quoth Jehovah. 12  They have denied Jehovah and said “Not he; no harm will come upon us, we shall not see warfare and famine; 13***  the prophets will fade away, they have not the word in them; so shall they be dealt with.” 14*  So Jehovah the God of Armies says “Since they say this thing, here I am making my word in your mouth a fire and this people wood, and it shall eat them up. 15  Here I am bringing a nation against you from far away, house of Israel,” quoth Jehovah; “it is an elemental nation, it is a primeval nation, it is a nation whose language you do not know and will not understand what they say. 16  Their quiver is an open grave; they are all champions; 17  and they will eat up your harvest and your bread, eat up your sons and your daughters, eat up your sheep and your cattle, eat up your grapevine and your fig-tree; they will lay waste with the sword your fortified cities that you trust in. 18  And I will not make an end with you in those days either,” quoth Jehovah. 19*  And when they say “In return for what has our God Jehovah done all these things to us?” you shall say to them “As you left me and worshiped foreign gods in your country, so you shall be subject to aliens in a country not your own.” 20  Tell this among the house of Jacob and give out in Judah 21  “Listen to this, foolish and senseless people that have eyes but do not see, have ears but do not hear: 22  Will you not fear me, quoth Jehovah, or be in trepidation before me, who have made sand a limit for the sea, a perpetual mark that it is not to pass? its waves roll but can do nothing, roar but do not pass it. 23  But this people has a stubborn and disobedient heart, they have broken away and gone, 24*  and not said to themselves ‘Let us fear our God Jehovah, who gives rain, fall rains and spring rains in season, keeping for us the system of harvest-time’; 25*  your offenses have deranged these and your sins have withheld good from you. 26*  For among my people are found miscreants peering as bird-catchers peer; they have set up a deadfall, they catch men; 27*  just like a basket full of birds their houses are full of swindle; that is how they have become great and rich 28**  and fat. They have thought, and also wrought, wicked things: they have not executed justice, the justice due to an orphan, so as to prosper, nor vindicated poor men’s rights. 29  Am I not to punish these things, quoth Jehovah, or not to have my revenge on such a nation as this? 30  A burning shame and horror has come about in the country: 31*  the prophets prophesy by sham inspiration and the priests give instructions on the same level, and my people love that sort of thing; and what will you do about the upshot?”

Footnotes

5:1 Var. look, and search
5:2 Var. forgive it. And if they say “By Jehovah,” they are
5:7 (first part) Susp.
5:8 (teaser-ponies) Unc.
5:9 Or punish these, quoth
5:10 (first part) Susp.
5:10 Or take off its branches
5:13 Lit. will became air
5:13 Var. Jehovah’s word
5:13 (last six words) Or that for them!
5:14 Codd. Since you say
5:19 Lit. subject to strangers
5:24 Lit. the weeks of the rules of harvest
5:25 Var. our offenses . . . our sins . . . from us
5:26 Codd. miscreants, one peers as bird-catchers crouch
5:27-28 Codd. and rich. They have become fat, they have thought
5:28 Codd. also passed
5:28 Var. a widow’s rights
5:31 Codd. the priests dominate on the same level (lit. parallel to them) Var. the priests shake hands with them