Lamentations 2

1Look how the Lord has set the Daughter of Zion under a cloud. He has thrown the glory of Israel from the sky to the ground. The Lord didn’t keep in mind that Israel was his footstool, on the day of his anger. 2The Lord destroyed the houses of Jacob. He destroyed them without mercy. He destroyed in his anger the fortresses of the Daughter of Judah. The Lord threw the kingdom of Judah and its rulers to the ground. He ruined the kingdom of Judah. 3The Lord was angry and he destroyed all the strength of Israel. He took away his right hand from Israel. He did this when the enemy came. He burned like a flaming fire in Jacob. He was like a fire that burns all around. 4The Lord bent his bow like an enemy. He held his sword in his right hand. He killed all the good looking men of Judah. The Lord killed them as if he were the enemy. The Lord poured out his anger. He poured it out on the tents of Zion. 5The Lord has become like an enemy. He has swallowed up Israel. He has swallowed up all her palaces. He has swallowed up all her fortresses. He has made much sadness and crying for the dead in the Daughter of Judah. 6The Lord pulled up his own tent as if it were a garden. He has ruined the place where the people went to meet to worship him. The Lord has made people forget the special assemblies and special days of rest in Zion. The Lord rejected the king and the priests. He was angry and rejected them. 7The Lord rejected his altar. He rejected his Holy Place of worship. He let the enemy pull down the walls of the palaces of Jerusalem. The enemy shouted with joy in the Lord’s temple. They made noise, as if it were a holiday. 8The Lord planned to destroy the wall of the Daughter of Zion. He marked the wall with a measuring line ˻to show where the wall should be torn down˼. He didn’t stop himself from destroying. So he made all the walls cry out in sadness. Together they wasted away. 9Jerusalem’s gates have sunk into the ground. He destroyed and smashed the bars of the gates. Her king and princes are in other nations. There is no more teaching for them. Also Jerusalem’s prophets have not found any visions from the Lord. 10The elders of Zion sit on the ground. They sit on the ground and are quiet. They pour dust on their heads. They put on sackcloth. The young women of Jerusalem bow their heads to the ground in sorrow. 11My eyes are worn out with tears! My insides are upset! My heart feels like it has been poured on the ground! I feel this way because of the destruction of my people. Children and babies are fainting. They are fainting in the public squares of the city. 12Those children say to their mothers, ”Where is bread and wine?” They ask this question as they die. They die on their mother’s laps. 13Daughter of Zion, what can I compare you to? What can I compare you to, Virgin Daughter of Zion? How can I comfort you? Your destruction is as big as the sea! I don’t think anyone can heal you. 14Your prophets saw visions for you. But their visions were only worthless lies. They didn’t preach against your sins. They didn’t try to make things better. They preached messages for you, but they were false messages that fooled you. 15The people that pass by on the road clap their hands at you in shock. They whistle and shake their heads at the Daughter of Jerusalem. They ask, ”Is this the city that people called, 'The Perfectly Beautiful City’ and 'The Joy of all the Earth’?” 16All your enemies laugh at you. They whistle and grind their teeth at you. They say, ”We have swallowed them up! This is truly the day we were hoping for. We have finally seen this happen.” 17The Lord did what he planned to do. He has done what he said he would do. He has done what he commanded from times of long ago. He destroyed, and he had no pity. He made your enemies happy because of what happened to you. He made your enemies strong. 18Cry out with your hearts to the Lord! Wall of the Daughter of Zion, let tears roll down like a stream! let your tears roll down day and night. Don’t stop! Don’t let your eyes be still! 19Get up! Cry out in the night! Cry out at the beginning of each of the parts of the night! Pour out your heart as if it were water! Pour out your heart before the Lord! Lift up your hands in prayer to the Lord. Ask him to let your children live. Ask him to let your children live that are fainting with starvation. They are fainting with starvation in all the streets of the city. 20Look at me, Lord! See who it is that you have treated this way! Let me ask this question: Should women eat the children they have given birth to? Should women eat the children that they have cared for? Should priest and prophet be killed in the temple of the Lord? 21Young men and old men lie on the ground in the streets of the city. My young women and young men have been killed by the sword. You, Lord, killed them on the day of your anger! You killed them without mercy! 22You invited terror to come to me from all around. You invited terror like you were inviting it to a holiday. No person escaped on the day of the Lord’s anger. My enemy has killed those that I raised and brought up.

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