English Revised Version
The Prosperity of the Wicked
1Righteous art thou, O LORD, when I plead with thee: yet would I reason the cause with thee: wherefore doth the way of the wicked prosper? wherefore are all they at ease that deal very treacherously?
2Thou hast planted them, yea, they have taken root; they grow, yea, they bring forth fruit: thou art near in their mouth, and far from their reins.
3But thou, O LORD, knowest me; thou seest me, and triest mine heart toward thee: pull them out like sheep for the slaughter, and prepare them for the day of slaughter.
4How long shall the land mourn, and the herbs of the whole country wither? for the wickedness of them that dwell therein, the beasts are consumed, and the birds; because they said, He shall not see our latter end.
God's Answer to Jeremiah
5If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? and though in a land of peace thou art secure, yet how wilt thou do in the pride of Jordan?
6For even thy brethren, and the house of thy father, even they have dealt treacherously with thee; even they have cried aloud after thee: believe them not, though they speak fair words unto thee.
7I have forsaken mine house, I have cast off mine heritage; I have given the dearly beloved of my soul into the hand of her enemies.
8Mine heritage is become unto me as a lion in the forest: she hath uttered her voice against me; therefore I have hated her.
9Is mine heritage unto me as a speckled bird of prey? are the birds of prey against her round about? go ye, assemble all the beasts of the field, bring them to devour.
10Many shepherds have destroyed my vineyard, they have trodden my portion under foot, they have made my pleasant portion a desolate wilderness.
11They have made it a desolation; it mourneth unto me, being desolate; the whole land is made desolate, because no man layeth it to heart.
12Spoilers are come upon all the bare heights in the wilderness: for the sword of the LORD devoureth from the one end of the land even to the other end of the land: no flesh hath peace.
13They have sown wheat, and have reaped thorns; they have put themselves to pain, and profit nothing: and ye shall be ashamed of your fruits, because of the fierce anger of the LORD.
A Message for Israel's Neighbors
14Thus saith the LORD against all mine evil neighbours, that touch the inheritance which I have caused my people Israel to inherit: Behold, I will pluck them up from off their land, and will pluck up the house of Judah from among them. 15And it shall come to pass, after that I have plucked them up, I will return and have compassion on them; and I will bring them again, every man to his heritage, and every man to his land. 16and it shall come to pass, if they will diligently learn the ways of my people, to swear by my name, As the LORD liveth; even as they taught my people to swear by Baal; then shall they be built up in the midst of my people. 17But if they will not hear, then will I pluck up that nation, plucking up and destroying it, saith the LORD.