Exhortation to Repent
1Thus says the Lord: "Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and speak there this word, 2and say, 'Hear the word of the Lord, O King of Judah, who sit on the throne of David, you, and your servants, and your people who enter these gates. 3Thus says the Lord: Do justice and righteousness, and deliver from the hand of the oppressor him who has been robbed. And do no wrong or violence to the alien, the fatherless, and the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place. 4For if you will indeed obey this word, then there shall enter the gates of this house kings who sit on the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, they, and their servants, and their people. 5But if you will not heed these words, I swear by myself, says the Lord, that this house shall become a desolation. 6For thus says the Lord concerning the house of the king of Judah:
" 'You are as Gilead to me,
as the summit of Lebanon,
yet surely I will make you a desert,
an uninhabited city.a
7I will prepare destroyers against you,
each with his weapons;
and they shall cut down your choicest cedars,
and cast them into the fire.
8" 'And many nations will pass by this city, and every man will say to his neighbor, "Why has the Lord dealt thus with this great city?" 9And they will answer, "Because they forsook the covenant of the Lord their God, and worshiped other gods and served them." ' "
10Weep not for him who is dead,
nor bemoan him;
but weep bitterly for him who goes away,
for he shall return no more
to see his native land.
Message to the Sons of Josiah
11For thus says the Lord concerning Shallum the son of Josi'ah, king of Judah, who reigned instead of Josi'ah his father, and who went away from this place: "He shall return here no more, 12but in the place where they have carried him captive, there shall he die, and he shall never see this land again."
13"Woe to him who builds his house by unrighteousness,
and his upper rooms by injustice;
who makes his neighbor serve him for nothing,
and does not give him his wages;
14who says, 'I will build myself a great house
with spacious upper rooms,'
and cuts out windows for it,
paneling it with cedar,
and painting it with vermilion.
15Do you think you are a king
because you compete in cedar?
Did not your father eat and drink
and do justice and righteousness?
Then it was well with him.
16He judged the cause of the poor and needy;
then it was well.
Is not this to know me?
says the Lord.
17But you have eyes and heart
only for your dishonest gain,
for shedding innocent blood,
and for practicing oppression and violence."
18Therefore thus says the Lord concerning Jehoi'akim the son of Josi'ah, 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 majesty!'
19With the burial of an ass he shall be buried,
dragged and cast forth beyond the gates of Jerusalem."
20"Go up to Lebanon, and cry out,
and lift up your voice in Bashan;
cry from Ab'arim,
for all your lovers are destroyed.
21I spoke to you in your prosperity,
but you said, 'I will not listen.'
This has been your way from your youth,
that you have not obeyed my voice.
22The wind shall shepherd all your shepherds,
and your lovers shall go into captivity;
then you will be ashamed and confounded
because of all your wickedness.
23O inhabitant of Lebanon,
nested among the cedars,
how you will groanb when pangs come upon you,
pain as of a woman in travail!"
Judgment on Coniah (Jehoiachin)
24"As I live, says the Lord, though Coni'ah the son of Jehoi'akim, king of Judah, were the signet ring on my right hand, yet I would tear you off 25and give you into the hand of those who seek your life, into the hand of those of whom you are afraid, even into the hand of Nebuchadrez'zar king of Babylon and into the hand of the Chalde'ans. 26I will hurl you and the mother who bore you into another country, where you were not born, and there you shall die. 27But to the land to which they will long to return, there they shall not return."
28Is this man Coni'ah a despised, broken pot,
a vessel no one cares for?
Why are he and his children hurled and cast
into a land which they do not know?
29O land, land, land,
hear the word of the Lord!
30Thus says the Lord:
"Write this man down as childless,
a man who shall not succeed in his days;
for none of his offspring shall succeed
in sitting on the throne of David,
and ruling again in Judah."