Doom bursts forth as a water spout.
For the Day that has waited is come.
Joy has flown, spreading panic about.
Pride has blossomed and violence has grown, –
a rod for punishing, thick and stout, –
people wickeder cause them to groan.
Those escaping reflect and moan.
Limbs go limp, and their courage water,
shame will cover, and their schemes will falter.
The gold and jewels, their trust and pride,
salvation from hunger and sword can’t provide.
Calamity, calamity, rumour and fear:
no hope from prophet, the prince in despair.
In shame they can see,
and have to agree
his judgement is just,
he does what he must,
for he is the Lord,
he’s righteous and fair.
In the temple, place of worship, things detestable are seen.
Idols, worship to false gods, dishonour of the One who’d been
their Protector, Teacher, Saviour.
Now their leaders’ own behaviour
incites; and violence spreads, increases;
– God, his wrath at last releases.
Holy One must leave that day:
in this place he cannot stay:
God of glory driven away.
Exceeding great their sin, the land
was filled with bloodshed unconfined.
Injustice filled the city, so
they say, ‘The LORD has left us, cannot know’.
God’s warnings scorned, their time has come,
with coals of judgement from God’s throne.
A few, few only shared his grief.
They have God’s mark, and their belief
and faithfulness will save them from
the judgement full that has to come.
The LORD of glory cannot stay,
and leaves his temple on that day.
Those still in Jerusalem,
aren’t ‘choice meat within the pot’,
not the ‘cream’ kept safe; – that lot
far away, aren’t lost in Babylon, –
though they’ve suffered such affliction,
still they have God’s presence real:
he’s their sanctuary; his appeal
heeded, moulded by his hand,
they’ll be brought back to this land.
For, though you as yet are here,
you will not be safe from fear.
God will drive you from your pot,
your devotion has been not
for your God, but images –
with reward that ravages.
‘Days go by and every vision
comes to nothing’ so they say.
‘Days are near when God’s visions
all will be fulfilled his way.’
‘Many years before fulfilment, –
distant future, never fear.’
‘No more waiting, no more patient,
what God says is almost here.’
ch.13 – False Prophets
Scavenging jackals, hungry foxes,
– no repairers of the walls, –
no desire to search and rescue,
draw them back to God who calls.
Words seductive, false, inventing
lying cry of ‘Peace’, instead
of what God says he’s intending:
flimsy whitewashed wall will tumble,
with its builders false, will crumble.
Ensnaring God’s people;
who’re living in evil,
to stay as they chose,
not turn from the wickedness
to save their own lives;
disheartening the righteous
with murderous lies.
They will know he is the LORD,
who can bring his truth, his Word
to his people clearly.