1If my head were a flowing spring,
my eyes a fountain of tears,
I would weep day and night9:1 Ps 42:3; Jr 13:17; Lm 2:11; Lk 19:41
over the slain of my dear9:1 Lit slain among the daughter of my people.
2If only I had a traveler’s lodging place
in the wilderness,9:2 1Kg 19:9–10
I would abandon my people
and depart from them,
for they are all adulterers,9:2 Jr 23:10; Hs 7:4; Mal 3:5
a solemn assembly of treacherous people.9:2 Is 24:16; 33:1; Jr 12:1

3They bent their tongues like their bows;
lies and not faithfulness prevail in the land,
for they proceed from one evil to another,
and they do not take me into account.9:3 Jr 4:22
This is the Lord’s declaration.
Imminent Ruin and Exile
4Everyone has to be on guard against his friend.
Don’t trust any brother,
for every brother will certainly deceive,9:4 Gn 27:36
and every friend spread slander.9:4 Jr 6:28
5Each one betrays his friend;9:5 Gn 31:7
no one tells the truth.
They have taught their tongues to speak lies;
they wear themselves out doing wrong.
6You live in a world of deception.9:6 LXX reads Oppression on oppression, deceit on deceit9:6 Gn 27:35–36; 34:13
In their deception they refuse to know me.9:6 Rm 1:17
This is the Lord’s declaration.
7Therefore, this is what the Lord of Armies says:
I am about to refine them and test them,9:7 Is 1:25; Jr 6:27
for what else can I do
because of my dear9:7 Lit of the daughter of my people?9:7 LXX, Tg read because of their evils
8Their tongues are deadly arrows —
they speak deception.9:8 Ps 28:3
With his mouth
one speaks peaceably with his friend,
but inwardly he sets up an ambush.
9Should I not punish them for these things?
This is the Lord’s declaration.
Should I not avenge myself9:9 Jr 5:9,29
on such a nation as this?

10I will raise weeping and a lament
over the mountains,
a dirge over the wilderness grazing land,
for they have been so scorched
that no one passes through.
The sound of cattle is no longer heard.
From the birds of the sky to the animals,9:10 Jr 4:25; 12:4
everything has fled — they have gone away.
11I will make Jerusalem a heap of rubble,9:11 2Kg 19:25; Is 25:2
a jackals’ den.9:11 Jr 10:22; 49:33; 51:37
I will make the cities of Judah a desolation,
an uninhabited place.
12Who is the person wise enough to understand this?9:12 Ps 107:43; Ec 8:1; Hs 14:9 Who has the Lord spoken to, that he may explain it? Why is the land destroyed and scorched like a wilderness, so no one can pass through?
13The Lord said, “It is because they abandoned my instruction,9:13 2Ch 12:1 which I set before them, and did not obey my voice or walk according to it.
14Instead, they followed the stubbornness of their hearts9:14 Dt 29:19; Ps 81:12 and followed the Baals as their ancestors taught them.”9:14 Jr 2:8,23
15Therefore, this is what the Lord of Armies, the God of Israel, says: “I am about to feed this people wormwood9:15 Dt 29:18; Jr 23:15; Lm 3:19 and give them poisonous water to drink.9:15 Jr 8:14; 23:15
16I will scatter them among the nations9:16 Lv 26:33; Dt 4:27; 28:64 that they and their ancestors have not known. I will send a sword after them until I have finished them off.”
Mourning over Judah
17This is what the Lord of Armies says:
Consider, and summon the women who mourn;9:17 Ec 12:5; Am 5:16
send for the skillful women.
18Let them come quickly to raise a lament over us
so that our eyes may overflow with tears,
our eyelids be soaked with weeping.
19For a sound of lamentation is heard from Zion:
How devastated we are.
We are greatly ashamed,9:19 Jr 2:26; 6:15; 8:12
for we have abandoned the land;
our dwellings have been torn down.

20Now hear the word of the Lord, you women.
Pay attention to9:20 Lit Your ears must receive the words from his mouth.
Teach your daughters a lament
and one another a dirge,
21for Death9:21 Jb 18:13; 28:22; Ps 49:14 has climbed through our windows;
it has entered our fortresses,
cutting off children from the streets,
young men from the squares.
22“Speak as follows: ‘This is what the Lord declares: Human corpses will fall like manure on the surface of the field,9:22 2Kg 9:30,32,37 like newly cut grain9:22 Am 2:13; Mc 4:12; Zch 12:6 after the reaper with no one to gather it.
Boast in the Lord
23“‘This is what the Lord says:
The wise person should not boast in his wisdom;
the strong should not boast in his strength;
the wealthy should not boast in his wealth.
24But the one who boasts should boast in this:
that he understands and knows me9:24 Ps 34:2; 64:10; 105:3; 1Co 1:31; 2Co 10:17 —
that I am the Lord, showing faithful love,
justice, and righteousness on the earth,
for I delight in these things.
This is the Lord’s declaration.
25“‘Look, the days are coming — this is the Lord’s declaration — when I will punish all the circumcised yet uncircumcised:9:25 Jr 4:4; Rm 2:28–29
26Egypt, Judah, Edom, the Ammonites, Moab, and all the inhabitants of the desert who clip the hair on their temples.9:26 Or who live in distant places All these nations are uncircumcised, and the whole house of Israel is uncircumcised in heart.’”9:26 Lv 19:27; Jr 25:23; 49:32; Ezk 44:7,9