How Lonely Sits the City
1 aHow lonely sits the city
that was full of people!
How like ba widow has she become,
she who was great among the nations!
She who was ca princess among the provinces
has become da slave.
2 eShe weeps bitterly in the night,
with tears on her cheeks;
famong all her lovers
she has gnone to comfort her;
hall her friends have dealt treacherously with her;
they have become her enemies.
3 iJudah has gone into exile because of affliction1
and hard servitude;
jshe dwells now among the nations,
kbut finds no resting place;
her pursuers have all overtaken her
in the midst of her distress.2
4 The roads to Zion mourn,
for none come to lthe festival;
mall her gates are desolate;
her priests ngroan;
her virgins have been afflicted,3
and she herself suffers bitterly.
5 oHer foes have become the head;
her penemies prosper,
because qthe Lord has afflicted her
rfor the multitude of her transgressions;
sher children have gone away,
captives before the foe.
6 From the daughter of Zion
all her majesty has departed.
Her princes have become like deer
tthat find no pasture;
they fled without strength
before the pursuer.
7 Jerusalem remembers
in the days of her affliction and wandering
uall the precious things
that were hers from vdays of old.
When her people fell into the hand of the foe,
and there was none to help her,
her foes gloated over her;
they wmocked at her downfall.
8 xJerusalem sinned grievously;
therefore she became filthy;
all who honored her despise her,
yfor they have seen her nakedness;
she herself zgroans
and turns her face away.
9 Her uncleanness was ain her skirts;
bshe took no thought of her future;4
therefore her fall is terrible;
cshe has no comforter.
“O Lord, behold my affliction,
for the enemy has dtriumphed!”
10 The enemy has stretched out his hands
over all her eprecious things;
for she has seen fthe nations
enter her sanctuary,
those whom you gforbade
to enter your congregation.
11 All her people zgroan
as hthey search for bread;
they trade their etreasures for ifood
to revive their strength.
“Look, O Lord, and see,
for I am despised.”
12 “Is it nothing to you, all jyou who pass by?
kLook and see
if there is any sorrow like my sorrow,
which was brought upon me,
which lthe Lord inflicted
on mthe day of his fierce anger.
13 “From on high he nsent fire;
into my bones5 he made it descend;
ohe spread a net for my feet;
he turned me back;
phe has left me stunned,
faint all the day long.
14 “My transgressions were bound6 into qa yoke;
by his hand they were fastened together;
they were set upon my neck;
he caused my strength to fail;
the Lord gave me into the hands
of those whom I cannot withstand.
15 “The Lord rejected
all my mighty men in my midst;
he summoned an assembly against me
to crush my young men;
rthe Lord has trodden as in a winepress
the virgin daughter of Judah.
16 “For these things sI weep;
my eyes flow with tears;
for ta comforter is far from me,
one to urevive my spirit;
my children are desolate,
for the enemy has prevailed.”
17 vZion stretches out her hands,
but tthere is none to comfort her;
the Lord has commanded against Jacob
that his neighbors should be his foes;
Jerusalem has become
a filthy thing among them.
18 w“The Lord is in the right,
xfor I have rebelled against his word;
but hear, all you peoples,
and see my suffering;
ymy young women and my young men
have gone into captivity.
19 “I called to zmy lovers,
but they deceived me;
my priests and elders
perished in the city,
while athey sought food
to revive their strength.
20 “Look, O Lord, for I am in distress;
bmy stomach churns;
my heart is wrung within me,
because I have been very rebellious.
cIn the street the sword bereaves;
in the house it is like death.
yet ethere is no one to comfort me.
All my enemies have heard of my trouble;
fthey are glad that you have done it.
You have brought8 the day you announced;
fnow let them be as I am.
22 g“Let all their evildoing come before you,
and deal with them
as hyou have dealt with me
because of all my transgressions;
for dmy groans are many,
and imy heart is faint.”
The Lord Has Destroyed Without Pity
2 How the Lord in his anger
has set the daughter of Zion junder a cloud!
kHe has cast down from heaven to earth
the splendor of Israel;
he has not remembered lhis footstool
in the day of his anger.
2 The Lord mhas swallowed up nwithout mercy
all the habitations of Jacob;
in his wrath ohe has broken down
the strongholds of the daughter of Judah;
he has brought pdown to the ground pin dishonor
the kingdom qand its rulers.
3 He has cut down in rfierce anger
all sthe might of Israel;
the has withdrawn from them his right hand
in the face of the enemy;
uhe has burned like a flaming fire in Jacob,
consuming all around.
4 vHe has bent his bow like an enemy,
with his right hand set wlike a foe;
and he has killed all who were delightful in our eyes
in the tent of the daughter of Zion;
he has poured out his fury like fire.
5 wThe Lord has become like an enemy;
xhe has swallowed up Israel;
yhe has swallowed up all its palaces;
he has laid in ruins its strongholds,
and he has multiplied in the daughter of Judah
zmourning and lamentation.
6 He has laid waste his booth like a garden,
laid in ruins ahis meeting place;
athe Lord has made Zion forget
festival and bSabbath,
and in his fierce indignation has spurned king and priest.
7 cThe Lord has scorned his altar,
ddisowned his sanctuary;
ehe has delivered into the hand of the enemy
the walls of her palaces;
fthey raised a clamor in the house of the Lord
as on the day of festival.
8 gThe Lord determined to lay in ruins
hthe wall of the daughter of Zion;
ihe stretched out the measuring line;
he did not restrain his hand from destroying;
jhe caused rampart and wall to lament;
jthey languished together.
9 Her gates have sunk into the ground;
khe has ruined kand broken her bars;
lher king and princes are among the nations;
the law is no more,
and mher prophets find
no vision from the Lord.
10 The elders of the daughter of Zion
nsit on the ground oin silence;
pthey have thrown dust on their heads
and qput on sackcloth;
the young women of Jerusalem
have bowed their heads to the ground.
11 rMy eyes are spent with weeping;
smy stomach churns;
tmy bile is poured out to the ground
ubecause of the destruction of the daughter of my people,
vbecause infants and babies wfaint
in the streets of the city.
12 They cry to their mothers,
x“Where is bread and wine?”
was they faint like a wounded man
in the streets of the city,
as their life is poured out
on their mothers’ bosom.
13 What can I say for you, yto what compare you,
O daughter of Jerusalem?
yWhat can I liken to you, that I may comfort you,
O virgin daughter of Zion?
zFor your ruin is vast as the sea;
who can heal you?
14 aYour prophets have seen for you
false and deceptive visions;
bthey have not exposed your iniquity
to crestore your fortunes,
dbut have seen for you eoracles
that are false and misleading.
15 All who pass along the way
clap their hands at you;
fthey hiss and wag their heads
at the daughter of Jerusalem:
“Is this the city that was called
gthe perfection of beauty,
gthe joy of all the earth?”
16 hAll your enemies
rail against you;
they hiss, they gnash their teeth,
they cry: “We ihave swallowed her!
Ah, this is the day we longed for;
now we have it; jwe see it!”
17 The Lord has done what he purposed;
he has carried out khis word,
which he commanded llong ago;
mhe has thrown down nwithout pity;
ohe has made the enemy rejoice over you
and exalted the pmight of your foes.
18 Their heart cried to the Lord.
O qwall of the daughter of Zion,
rlet tears stream down like a torrent
sday and night!
tGive yourself no rest,
uyour eyes no respite!
19 “Arise, vcry out in the night,
at the beginning of the night watches!
wPour out your heart like water
before the presence of the Lord!
xLift your hands to him
for the lives of your children,
ywho faint for hunger
at the head of every street.”
20 Look, O Lord, and see!
zWith whom have you dealt thus?
aShould women eat the fruit of their womb,
the children of btheir tender care?
Should cpriest and prophet be killed
in the sanctuary of the Lord?
21 In the dust of the streets
dlie the young and the old;
dmy young women and my young men
have fallen by the sword;
eyou have killed them in the day of your anger,
slaughtering fwithout pity.
22 You summoned as if to ga festival day
hmy terrors on every side,
iand on the day of the anger of the Lord
no one escaped or survived;
jthose whom I held and raised
my enemy destroyed.
Great Is Your Faithfulness
3 kI am the man who has seen affliction
under the lrod of his wrath;
2 he has driven and brought me
minto darkness without any light;
3 surely against me he turns his hand
again and again the whole day long.
4 He has made my flesh and my skin waste away;
nhe has broken my bones;
5 ohe has besieged and enveloped me
with pbitterness and tribulation;
6 qhe has made me dwell in darkness
like the dead of long ago.
7 rHe has walled me about so that sI cannot escape;
he has made my chains heavy;
8 though tI call and cry for help,
he shuts out my prayer;
9 rhe has blocked my ways with blocks of stones;
he has made my paths crooked.
10 uHe is a bear lying in wait for me,
a lion in hiding;
11 vhe turned aside my steps and utore me to pieces;
whe has made me desolate;
12 xhe bent his bow yand set me
as a target for his arrow.
13 He drove into my kidneys
zthe arrows of his quiver;
14 aI have become the laughingstock of all peoples,
bthe object of their taunts all day long.
15 cHe has filled me with bitterness;
he has sated me with dwormwood.
16 eHe has made my teeth grind on gravel,
and fmade me cower in ashes;
17 my soul is bereft of peace;
I have forgotten what happiness9 is;
18 gso I say, “My endurance has perished;
so has my hope from the Lord.”
19 hRemember my affliction and my wanderings,
20 My soul continually remembers it
jand is bowed down within me.
21 But this I call to mind,
and ktherefore I have hope:
22 lThe steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;10
lhis mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new mevery morning;
ngreat is your faithfulness.
24 o“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
k“therefore I will hope in him.”
25 The Lord is good to those who pwait for him,
to the soul who seeks him.
26 qIt is good that one should wait quietly
for the salvation of the Lord.
27 rIt is good for a man that he bear
the yoke sin his youth.
28 Let him tsit alone in silence
when it is laid on him;
29 ulet him put his mouth in the dust—
there may yet be hope;
30 vlet him give his cheek to the one who strikes,
and let him be filled with insults.
31 wFor the Lord will not
cast off forever,
32 but, though he xcause grief, yhe will have compassion
zaccording to the abundance of his steadfast love;
33 afor he does not afflict from his heart
or bgrieve the children of men.
34 To crush underfoot
all cthe prisoners of the earth,
35 dto deny a man justice
in the presence of the Most High,
36 to subvert a man in his lawsuit,
dthe Lord does not approve.
37 eWho has spoken and it came to pass,
unless the Lord has commanded it?
38 fIs it not from the mouth of the Most High
that good and bad come?
39 gWhy should a living man complain,
a man, about the punishment of his sins?
40 Let us test and examine our ways,
hand return to the Lord!
41 iLet us lift up our hearts and hands
to God in heaven:
42 j“We have transgressed and krebelled,
and you have not forgiven.
43 “You have wrapped yourself with anger and pursued us,
lkilling without pity;
44 myou have wrapped yourself with a cloud
so that no prayer can pass through.
45 nYou have made us scum and garbage
among the peoples.
46 o“All our enemies
open their mouths against us;
47 ppanic and pitfall have come upon us,
devastation and qdestruction;
48 rmy eyes flow with rivers of tears
because of the destruction of the daughter of my people.
49 r“My eyes will flow without ceasing,
50 suntil the Lord from heaven
looks down and sees;
51 my eyes cause me grief
at the fate of all the daughters of my city.
52 t“I have been hunted ulike a bird
by those who were my enemies vwithout cause;
53 wthey flung me alive into the pit
xand cast stones on me;
54 ywater closed over my head;
I said, z‘I am lost.’
55 a“I called on your name, O Lord,
from the depths of the pit;
56 byou heard my plea, ‘Do not close
your ear to my cry for help!’
57 cYou came near when I called on you;
you said, d‘Do not fear!’
58 “You have etaken up my cause, fO Lord;
you have eredeemed my life.
59 You have seen the wrong done to me, gO Lord;
judge my cause.
60 You have seen all their vengeance,
all htheir plots against me.
61 i“You have heard their taunts, O Lord,
all htheir plots against me.
62 The lips and thoughts jof my assailants
are against me all the day long.
63 kBehold their sitting and their rising;
lI am the object of their taunts.
64 m“You will repay them,11 O Lord,
naccording to the work of their hands.
65 You will give them12 dullness of heart;
your curse will be13 on them.
66 You will pursue them14 in anger and odestroy them
The Words of King Lemuel
31 The words of King Lemuel. An oracle that his mother taught him:
2 What are you doing, my son?1 What are you doing, fson of my womb?
What are you doing, gson of my vows?
3 Do hnot give your strength to women,
your ways to those iwho destroy kings.
4 jIt is not for kings, O Lemuel,
it is not for kings kto drink wine,
or for rulers to take lstrong drink,
5 lest they drink and forget what has been decreed
and mpervert the rights of all the afflicted.
6 Give strong drink to the one who nis perishing,
and wine to othose in bitter distress;2
7 plet them drink and forget their poverty
and remember their misery no more.
8 qOpen your mouth for the mute,
for the rights of all who are destitute.3
9 Open your mouth, rjudge righteously,
The Woman Who Fears the Lord
10 4 uAn excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than vjewels.
11 The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12 She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13 She wseeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14 She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15 She xrises while it is yet night
and yprovides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17 She zdresses herself5 with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18 She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19 She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20 She aopens her hand to bthe poor
and reaches out her hands to bthe needy.
21 She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in cscarlet.6
22 She makes dbed coverings for herself;
her clothing is efine linen and fpurple.
23 Her husband is known in gthe gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24 She makes hlinen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 iStrength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27 She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many jwomen have done kexcellently,
but you surpass them all.”
30 lCharm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.