“He has bent
Like an enemy.
His right hand
Like a foe.
He has killed all
In whom we took pride
In the tent
Of daughter Zion.
He has poured out
Yahweh has become like an enemy of Israel. He bent his bow like an enemy archer about to release an arrow. His right hand was like an enemy warrior. He has killed all the important prideful people of Zion. He has poured out his fury like a raging fire. Yahweh was really mad. This verse starts with the Hebrew consonant letter Daleth. Each verse after this will use the next letter of the Hebrew alphabet in this acrostic poem.
“‘O that my head were a spring of water!
O that my eyes were a fountain of tears!
Thus I might weep day and night
For the slain of my poor people!
O that I had in the desert
A traveler’s lodging place!
Thus I might leave my people!
Thus I might go away from them!
They are all adulterers.
They are a band of traitors.
They bend their tongue
They have grown strong in the land
Because of falsehood,
Not because of truth.
They proceed from evil to evil.
They do not know me.’
Jeremiah has another oracle of Yahweh that speaks out about his lament over the corruption in Judah. Yahweh wished that he had a head with a spring of water or fountain of tears in his eyes, so that he could weep all day and night for the dead people of Judah. He wished that he had a lodging place in the desert so that he could get away from his poor people. They were all adulterers and traitors. They bent their tongues like bows with all their falsehood, instead of truth. They simply went from one evil to another evil. They did not even know Yahweh. It was a terrible scene. There is a slight discrepancy of the verse numbers since this first verse in the Jerusalem Bible is the last of the preceding chapter. However, I will follow the Revised Standard edition numbering for this chapter.