1Too righteous art thou, O Lord, that I could plead with thee; yet must I speak of the principles of justice with thee: Wherefore is the way of the wicked happy? do all those prosper that deal treacherously?
2Thou hast planted them; they have also taken root; they grow; they also bring forth fruit: thou art near, in their mouth, and far from their mind.
3But thou, O Lord, knowest me; thou seest me, and probest my heart toward thee; set them apart like sheep for the slaughter, and destine them for the day of slaying.
4How long shall the land mourn, and the herb of all the field wither? Because of the wickedness of those that dwell therein are wholly removed the beasts and the birds; because they said, He will not see our last end.
5If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, how then canst thou contend with the horses? and if in the land of peace, wherein thou trustedst, they wearied thee, how then wilt thou do in the swelling of the Jordan?
6For even thy brethren, and the house of thy father, even they have dealt treacherously with thee; yea, even they have called forth a crowd of men after thee: believe them not, though they speak kindly unto thee.
7I have forsaken my house, I have abandoned my heritage; I have given up the most dearly beloved of my soul into the hand of her enemies.
8My heritage is become unto me as a lion in the forest; it sent forth its voice against me: therefore do I hate it.
9Is my heritage become unto me as a bird of prey stained with blood? so that the birds of prey are all around it? Come ye, assemble all the beasts of the field, bring them hither to devour.
10Many shepherds have destroyed my vineyard, they have trodden under foot my field, they have rendered my pleasant field a desolate wilderness.
11They have made it a desert, and being desolate it mourneth before me: the whole land is made desolate, because no man laid it to heart.
12Over all the mountain-peaks in the wilderness did the destroyers come; for the sword of the Lord devoureth from the one end of the land even to the other end of the land: there is no peace to any flesh.
13They have sown wheat, but they reap thorns; they have put themselves to pain but have no profit; be therefore ashamed of your products, because of the fierce anger of the Lord.
14Thus hath said the Lord against all my bad neighbors, that touch the inheritance which I have caused my people Israel to inherit, Behold, I will pluck them out of their land, and the house of Judah will I pluck out from the midst of them.
15And it shall come to pass, that, after I have plucked them out, and I will again have mercy on them, and will restore them, every man to his heritage, and every man to his land.
16And it shall come to pass, if they will truly learn the ways of my people, to swear by my name, As the Lord liveth; as they had taught my people to swear by Ba'al: that they shall then be built up in the midst of my people.
17But if they will not hearken, then will I pluck out that nation, plucking out and exterminating them, saith the Lord.