1The word that came from the Lord to
2Jeremiah, saying, Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there thou shalt hear my words.
3So I went down to the potter’s house, and behold, he was making a vessel on the stones.
4And the vessel which he was making with his hands fell: so he made it again another vessel, as it seemed good to him to make it.
5And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,
6Shall I not be able, O house of Israel, to do to you as this potter? behold, as the clay of the potter are ye in my hands.
7If I shall pronounce a decree upon a nation, or upon a kingdom, to cut them off, and to destroy them;
8and that nation turn from all their sins, then will I repent of the evils which I purposed to do to them.
9And if I shall pronounce a decree upon a nation and kingdom, to rebuild and to plant it;
10and they do evil before me, so as not to hearken to my voice, then will I repent of the good which I spoke of, to do it to them.
11And now say to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, Behold, I prepare evils against you, and devise a device against you: let every one turn now from his evil way, and amend your practices.
12And they said, We will quit ourselves like men, for we will pursue our perverse ways, and we will perform each the lusts of his evil heart.
13Therefore thus saith the Lord; Inquire now among the nations, who has heard such very horrible things as the virgin of Israel has done?
14Will fertilizing streams fail to flow from a rock, or snow fail from Lebanon? will water violently impelled by the wind turn aside?
15For my people have forgotten me, they have offered incense in vain, and they fail in their ways, leaving the ancient tracks, to enter upon impassable paths;
16to make their land a desolation, and a perpetual hissing; all that go through it shall be amazed, and shall shake their heads.
17I will scatter them before their enemies like an east wind; I will show them the day of their destruction.
18Then they said, Come, and let us devise a device against Jeremiah; for the law shall not perish from the priest, nor counsel from the wise, nor the word from the prophet. Come, and let us smite him with the tongue, and we will hear all his words.
19Hear me, O Lord, and hear the voice of my pleading.
20Forasmuch as evil is rewarded for good; for they have spoken words against my soul, and they have hidden the punishment they meant for me; remember that I stood before thy face, to speak good for them, to turn away thy wrath from them.
21Therefore do thou deliver their sons to famine, and gather them to the power of the sword: let their women be childless and widows; and let their men be cut off by death, and their young men fall by the sword in war.
22Let there be a cry in their houses: thou shalt bring upon them robbers suddenly: for they have formed a plan to take me, and have hidden snares for me.
23And thou, Lord, knowest all their deadly counsel against me: account not their iniquities guiltless, and blot not out their sins from before thee: let their weakness come before thee; deal with them in the time of thy wrath.