The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Prophecy of Jeremias
When Jeremias uttered this prophecy, one of those who heard him was Phassur, son of Emmer, a priest who was entrusted with the care of the temple.
This Phassur gave Jeremias a beating, and put him in the stocks at the upper gate of Benjamin, in the temple precincts,
but next day released him. A new name the Lord has for thee, Jeremias told him, instead of Phassur; he means to call thee Danger-Everywhere.
Danger enough thou shalt have, the Lord says, thou and those friends of thine; with thy own eyes thou shalt see the enemy put them to the sword, when I make the king of Babylon master of Juda; to Babylon he will take them, and put them to the sword there.
All the wealth of this city, all the fruits of its toil, all that is of price, all the treasury of Juda’s kings, those enemies shall have in their power, to plunder and carry off and take back to Babylon with them.
And thou, Phassur, with all thy household, shalt go into exile; to Babylon thou shalt go, in Babylon thou shalt die, and there find burial with all such friends of thine as listened to thy lying prophecy.
Lord, thou hast sent me on a fool’s errand; if I played a fool’s part, a strength greater than mine overmastered me; morn to night, what a laughing-stock am I, every man’s nay-word!
Long have I prophesied, and still I clamoured against men’s wickedness, and still cried ruin; day in, day out, nothing it earns me, this divine spokesmanship, but reproach and mockery.
Did I essay to put the Lord out of my thoughts, and speak no more in his name, all at once it seemed as though a raging fire were locked in my bosom, pierced my whole frame, till I was worn out with it, and could bear no more.
For me, danger everywhere; so many crying, Denounce him, and that contemptuous cry echoed by all the companions I trusted, ever at my side: Denounce him we will; he may be fooled yet! Then we can overmaster him, and take our vengeance!
But the Lord stands at my side, a strong champion; fall and fail they must, my persecutors, and be disappointed of their hopes; fools, that cannot foresee shame eternal, shame indelible, awaiting them!
But thou, Lord of hosts, true judge that canst read the inmost thoughts of man’s heart, let me live to see thee punish them; to thee I have made my plea known.✻
Sing to the Lord yet, praise the Lord yet; he does not leave a defenceless life at the mercy of the wicked.
Cursed be the day of my birth! A time for cursing it was, not for blessing, when my mother brought me into the world.
Cursed be the man who told my father a son had been born to him, and brought gladness, ay, gladness, into his heart!
For that good news, be he rewarded with the noise of battle-cry at morn, dirge at noon, like some city the Lord overthrows in anger unrelenting!
Why did he not slay me yet unborn, the womb for my tomb, and frustrate my mother’s hope eternally?
Why must I come out into the light of day, where only labour and sorrow greet me, and in disappointed striving all my life is spent?
The Holy Bible