The Lord Will Judge Jerusalem and Judah
1Here is what
the Lord who rules over all is about to do.
The Lord will take away from Jerusalem and Judah
supplies and help alike.
He will take away all the supplies of food and water.
2He’ll take away heroes and soldiers.
He’ll take away judges and prophets.
He’ll take away fortune tellers and elders.
3He’ll take away captains of groups of 50 men.
He’ll take away government leaders.
He’ll take away advisers, skilled workers
and those who are clever at doing evil magic.
4The Lord will make mere youths their leaders.
Children will rule over them.
5People will treat one another badly.
They will fight against one another.
They will fight against their neighbors.
Young people will attack old people.
Ordinary people will attack those who are more important.
6A man will grab one of his brothers
in his father’s house. He will say,
“You have a coat. So you be our leader.
Take charge of all these broken-down buildings!”
7But at that time the brother will cry out,
“I can’t help you.
I don’t have any food or clothing in my house.
Don’t make me the leader of these people.”
8Jerusalem is about to fall.
And so is Judah.
They say and do things against the Lord.
They dare to disobey him to his very face.
9The look on their faces is a witness against them.
They show off their sin, just as the people of Sodom did.
They don’t even try to hide it.
How terrible it will be for them!
They have brought trouble on themselves.
10Tell those who do what is right that things will go well with them.
They will enjoy the results of the good things they’ve done.
11But how terrible it will be for those who do what is evil!
Trouble is about to fall on them.
They will be paid back for the evil things they’ve done.
12Those who are young treat my people badly.
Women rule over them.
My people, your leaders have taken you down the wrong path.
They have turned you away from the right path.
13The Lord takes his place in court.
He stands up to judge the people.
14He judges the elders and leaders of his people.
He says to them,
“My people are like a vineyard.
You have destroyed them.
The things you have taken from poor people are in your houses.
15What do you mean by crushing my people?
Why are you grinding the faces of the poor into the dirt?”
announces the Lord. He is the Lord who rules over all.
16The Lord continues,
“The women in Zion are very proud.
They walk along with their noses in the air.
They tease men with their eyes.
They sway their hips as they walk along.
Little chains jingle on their ankles.
17So I will put sores on the heads of Zion’s women.
And I will remove the hair from their heads.”
18At that time the Lord will take away the beautiful things they wear. He will take away their decorations, headbands and moon-shaped necklaces. 19He’ll take away their earrings, bracelets and veils. 20He’ll remove their headdresses, anklets and belts. He’ll take away their perfume bottles and charms. 21He’ll remove the rings they wear on their fingers and in their noses. 22He’ll take away their fine robes and their capes and coats. He’ll take away their purses 23and mirrors. And he’ll take away their linen clothes, turbans and shawls.
24Instead of smelling sweet,
the women will smell bad.
Instead of wearing belts,
they will wear ropes.
Instead of having beautiful hair,
they won’t have any hair at all.
Instead of wearing fine clothes,
they’ll wear rough clothes to show how sad they are.
Instead of being beautiful,
on their bodies they’ll have the marks of their owners.
25Jerusalem, your men will be killed by swords.
Your soldiers will die in battle.
26The city of Zion will be very sad.
Like a widow, she will lose everything.
She will sit on the ground and mourn.