Haters of Good, Lovers of Evil 3 1Then I said: “Listen, leaders of Jacob, leaders of Israel: Don’t you know anything of justice? 2Haters of good, lovers of evil: Isn’t justice in your job description? But you skin my people alive. You rip the meat off their bones. 3You break up the bones, chop the meat, and throw it in a pot for cannibal stew.” 4The time’s coming, though, when these same leaders will cry out for help to God, but he won’t listen. He’ll turn his face the other way because of their history of evil. 5Here is God’s Message to the prophets, the preachers who lie to my people: “For as long as they’re well paid and well fed, the prophets preach, ‘Isn’t life wonderful! Peace to all!’ But if you don’t pay up and jump on their bandwagon, their ‘God bless you’ turns into ‘God damn you.’ 6Therefore, you’re going blind. You’ll see nothing. You’ll live in deep shadows and know nothing. The sun has set on the prophets. They’ve had their day; from now on it’s night. 7Visionaries will be confused, experts will be all mixed up. They’ll hide behind their reputations and make lame excuses to cover up their God–ignorance.” 8But me—I’m filled with God’s power, filled with God’s Spirit of justice and strength, Ready to confront Jacob’s crime and Israel’s sin. 9The leaders of Jacob and the leaders of Israel are Leaders contemptuous of justice, who twist and distort right living, 10Leaders who build Zion by killing people, who expand Jerusalem by committing crimes. 11Judges sell verdicts to the highest bidder, priests mass–market their teaching, prophets preach for high fees, All the while posturing and pretending dependence on God: “We’ve got God on our side. He’ll protect us from disaster.” 12Because of people like you, Zion will be turned back into farmland, Jerusalem end up as a pile of rubble, and instead of the Temple on the mountain, a few scraggly scrub pines.
The Message® / © 2002 Eugene H. Peterson About