1 Hear this word, a lamentation, which I take up against you, O house of Israel.
2. The virgin of Israel is fallen; she shall no more arise: she is cast down upon her land; there is none to raise her up.
3. For thus saith the Lord Jehovah: The city that went forth a thousand shall have a hundred left, and that which went forth a hundred shall have ten left, for the house of Israel.
4. For thus saith Jehovah unto the house of Israel: Seek ye me, and ye shall live.
5. And seek not Bethel, neither go to Gilgal, and pass not to Beer-sheba; for Gilgal shall surely go into captivity, and Bethel shall come to nought.
6. Seek Jehovah, and ye shall live; lest he break out like fire in the house of Joseph, and devour [it], and there be none to quench [it] in Bethel.
7. Ye who turn judgment to wormwood, and cast down righteousness to the earth,
8. [seek him] that made the Pleiades and Orion, and turneth the shadow of death into the morning, and maketh the day dark with night; that calleth for the waters of the sea, and poureth them out upon the face of the earth: Jehovah is his name.
9. He causeth destruction to break forth suddenly upon the strong, and bringeth destruction upon the fortress.
10 They hate him that reproveth in the gate, and they abhor him that speaketh uprightly.
11. Forasmuch, therefore, as ye trample upon the poor, and take from him presents of wheat: ye have built houses of hewn stone, but ye shall not dwell in them; ye have planted pleasant vineyards, and ye shall not drink the wine of them.
12. For I know how manifold are your transgressions and your sins mighty: they afflict the just, they take a bribe, and they turn aside [the right of] the needy in the gate.
13. Therefore the prudent shall keep silence in this time; for it is an evil time.
14. Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live; and so Jehovah, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye say.
15. Hate evil, and love good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that Jehovah, the God of hosts, will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph.
16. Therefore thus saith Jehovah, the God of hosts, the Lord: Wailing shall be in all broadways; and they shall say in all the streets, Alas! alas! And they shall call the husbandman to mourning, and such as are skilful of lamentation to wailing.
17. And in all vineyards shall be wailing; for I will pass through the midst of thee, saith Jehovah.
18. Woe unto you that desire the day of Jehovah! To what end is the day of Jehovah for you? It shall be darkness and not light:
19. as if a man fled from a lion, and a bear met him; or went into the house and leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him.
20. Shall not the day of Jehovah be darkness, and not light? even very dark, and no brightness in it?
21. I hate, I despise your feasts, and I will not smell [a sweet odour] in your solemn assemblies.
22. For if ye offer up unto me burnt-offerings and your oblations, I will not accept [them]; neither will I regard the peace-offerings of your fatted beasts.
23. Take away from me the noise of thy songs, and I will not hear the melody of thy lutes;
24. but let judgment roll down as waters, and righteousness as an ever-flowing stream.
25. Did ye bring unto me sacrifices and oblations in the wilderness forty years, O house of Israel?
26. Yea, ye took up the tabernacle of your Moloch, and Chiun your images, the star of your god, which ye had made to yourselves;
27. and I will cause you to go into captivity beyond Damascus, saith Jehovah, whose name is the God of hosts.