Israel’s Irresponsible Leaders
9 All you beasts of the field, come to devour,
All you beasts in the forest.
10 His watchmen are blind,
They are all ignorant;
They are all dumb dogs,
They cannot bark;
Sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber.
11 Yes, they are greedy dogs
Which never have enough.
And they are shepherds
Who cannot understand;
They all look to their own way,
Every one for his own gain,
From his own territory.
12 “Come,” one says, “I will bring wine,
And we will fill ourselves with intoxicating drink;
Tomorrow will be as today,
And much more abundant.”
Israel’s Futile Idolatry
57 The righteous perishes,
And no man takes it to heart;
Merciful men are taken away,
While no one considers
That the righteous is taken away from evil.
2 He shall enter into peace;
They shall rest in their beds,
Each one walking in his uprightness.
3 “But come here,
You sons of the sorceress,
You offspring of the adulterer and the harlot!
4 Whom do you ridicule?
Against whom do you make a wide mouth
And stick out the tongue?
Are you not children of transgression,
Offspring of falsehood,
5 Inflaming yourselves with gods under every green tree,
Slaying the children in the valleys,
Under the clefts of the rocks?
6 Among the smooth stones of the stream
Is your portion;
They, they, are your lot!
Even to them you have poured a drink offering,
You have offered a grain offering.
Should I receive comfort in these?
7 “On a lofty and high mountain
You have set your bed;
Even there you went up
To offer sacrifice.
8 Also behind the doors and their posts
You have set up your remembrance;
For you have uncovered yourself to those other than Me,
And have gone up to them;
You have enlarged your bed
And made a covenant with them;
You have loved their bed,
Where you saw their nudity.
9 You went to the king with ointment,
And increased your perfumes;
You sent your messengers far off,
And even descended to Sheol.
10 You are wearied in the length of your way;
Yet you did not say, ‘There is no hope.’
You have found the life of your hand;
Therefore you were not grieved.
11 “And of whom have you been afraid, or feared,
That you have lied
And not remembered Me,
Nor taken it to your heart?
Is it not because I have held My peace from of old
That you do not fear Me?
12 I will declare your righteousness
And your works,
For they will not profit you.
13 When you cry out,
Let your collection of idols deliver you.
But the wind will carry them all away,
A breath will take them.
But he who puts his trust in Me shall possess the land,
And shall inherit My holy mountain.”
Healing for the Backslider
14 And one shall say,
“Heap it up! Heap it up!
Prepare the way,
Take the stumbling block out of the way of My people.”
15 For thus says the High and Lofty One
Who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy:
“I dwell in the high and holy place,
With him who has a contrite and humble spirit,
To revive the spirit of the humble,
And to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
16 For I will not contend forever,
Nor will I always be angry;
For the spirit would fail before Me,
And the souls which I have made.
17 For the iniquity of his covetousness
I was angry and struck him;
I hid and was angry,
And he went on backsliding in the way of his heart.
18 I have seen his ways, and will heal him;
I will also lead him,
And restore comforts to him
And to his mourners.
19 “I create the fruit of the lips:
Peace, peace to him who is far off and to him who is near,”
Says the Lord,
“And I will heal him.”
20 But the wicked are like the troubled sea,
When it cannot rest,
Whose waters cast up mire and dirt.
21 “There is no peace,”
Says my God, “for the wicked.”