The Potter and the Clay 18 1The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying: 2“Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause you to hear My words.” 3Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something at the [G]wheel. 4And the vessel that he [H]made of clay was [I]marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make. 5Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: 6“O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter?” says the Lord. “Look, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel! 7The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, 8if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it. 9And the instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it, 10if it does evil in My sight so that it does not obey My voice, then I will relent concerning the good with which I said I would benefit it. 11“Now therefore, speak to the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord: “Behold, I am fashioning a disaster and devising a plan against you. Return now every one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good.” ’ ” God’s Warning Rejected 12And they said, “That is hopeless! So we will walk according to our own plans, and we will every one [J]obey the dictates [K]of his evil heart.” 13Therefore thus says the Lord: “Ask now among the Gentiles, Who has heard such things? The virgin of Israel has done a very horrible thing. 14Will a man [L]leave the snow water of Lebanon, Which comes from the rock of the field? Will the cold flowing waters be forsaken for strange waters? 15“Because My people have forgotten Me, They have burned incense to worthless idols. And they have caused themselves to stumble in their ways, From the ancient paths, To walk in pathways and not on a highway, 16To make their land desolate and a perpetual hissing; Everyone who passes by it will be astonished And shake his head. 17I will scatter them as with an east wind before the enemy; I will [M]show them the back and not the face In the day of their calamity.” Jeremiah Persecuted 18Then they said, “Come and let us devise plans 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 attack him with the tongue, and let us not give heed to any of his words.” 19Give heed to me, O Lord, And listen to the voice of those who contend with me! 20Shall evil be repaid for good? For they have dug a pit for my life. Remember that I stood before You To speak good [N]for them, To turn away Your wrath from them. 21Therefore deliver up their children to the famine, And pour out their blood By the force of the sword; Let their wives become widows And bereaved of their children. Let their men be put to death, Their young men be slain By the sword in battle. 22Let a cry be heard from their houses, When You bring a troop suddenly upon them; For they have dug a pit to take me, And hidden snares for my feet. 23Yet, Lord, You know all their counsel Which is against me, to slay me. Provide no atonement for their iniquity, Nor blot out their sin from Your sight; But let them be overthrown before You. Deal thus with them In the time of Your anger.
New King James Version® / © 1982 Thomas Nelson, Inc. About