1 The LORD God of Israel said, "Jeremiah, get a scroll and write down everything I have told you.
2 (SEE 30:1)
3 Someday I will let my people from both Israel and Judah return to the land I gave their ancestors."
4 Then the LORD told me to say to Israel and Judah: I, the LORD, hear screams of terror, and there is no peace.
5 (SEE 30:4)
6 Can men give birth? Then why do I see them looking so pale and clutching their stomachs like women in labor?
7 My people, soon you will suffer worse than ever before, but I will save you.
8 Now you are slaves of other nations, but I will break the chains and smash the yokes that keep you in slavery.
9 Then you will be my servants, and I will choose a king for you from the family of David. *
10 Israel, you belong to me, so don't be afraid. You deserved to be punished; that's why I scattered you in distant nations. But I am with you, and someday I will destroy those nations.
11 Then I will bring you and your descendants back to your land, where I will protect you and give you peace. Then your fears will be gone. I, the LORD, have spoken.
12 The LORD said: My people, you are wounded and near death.
13 You are accused of a crime with no one to defend you, and you are covered with sores that no medicine can cure. *
14 Your friends have forgotten you; they don't care anymore. Even I have acted like an enemy. And because your sins are horrible and countless, I will be cruel as I punish you.
15 So don't bother to cry out for relief from your pain.
16 But if your enemies try to rob or destroy you, I will rob and destroy them, and they will be led as captives to foreign lands.
17 No one wants you as a friend or cares what happens to you. But I will heal your injuries, and you will get well.
18 The LORD said: Israel, I will be kind to you and let you come home. Jerusalem now lies in ruins, but you will rebuild it, complete with a new palace.
19 Other nations will respect and honor you. Your homes will be filled with children, and you will celebrate, singing praises to me.
20 It will be just like old times. Your nation will worship me, and I will punish anyone who abuses you.
21 One of your own people will become your ruler. And when I invite him to come near me at the place of worship, he will do so. No one would dare to come near without being invited.
22 You will be my people, and I will be your God. I, the LORD, have spoken.
23 I am furious! And like a violent storm I will strike those who do wrong.
24 I won't calm down until I have finished what I have decided to do. Someday, you will understand what I mean.
The Contemporary English Version, c1995 by the American Bible Society.
Selected texts provided for use with the Hypertext Bible Commentary