‘This is your lot.
This is the portion
I have measured out to you.
Because you have forgotten me.
You trusted in lies.
I myself will lift up your skirts
Over your face.
Your shame will be seen.
I have seen your abominations.
I have seen your adulteries.
I have seen your neighing.
I have seen your shameless prostitution
On the hills of the countryside.
Woe to you!
How long will it be
Before you are made clean?’”
Yahweh was really upset, as Jeremiah indicates. Yahweh has chosen their lot and measured the size of it. They had forgotten Yahweh, but trusted in lies. Thus Yahweh was going to violate them by lifting up their skirts over their face, so that everyone could see the shame of their nakedness. Yahweh had seen enough of their abominations that included adultery, complaining, and senseless prostitution on the hills in the countryside. Thus Yahweh issued his curse on them. He had no idea how long it would take to make them clean.
“If you say in your heart,
‘Why have these things
Come upon me?’
It is for the greatness
Of your iniquity.
Thus your skirts are lifted up.
You are violated.
Can Ethiopians change their skin?
Can leopards change their spots?
Can you do good
Since you are so accustomed to do evil?
I will scatter you
Like chaff driven by the wind
From the desert.’”
Yahweh was concerned that they did not realize what was going to happen to them. Was it their iniquity that led them to this point? Yes, they would be ashamed, because their skirts would be lifted up, as they will be sexually violated. The problem is that they cannot change their ways. Just like the Ethiopians with their dark skin cannot change their skin color, so neither can a leopard change its spots. They had become so accustomed to evil that they could not do any good things anymore. Thus Yahweh will scatter them like useless chaff with a strong desert wind.
“How well you direct your course
To seek lovers!
So that even to wicked women
You have taught your ways.
Also on your skirts is found
The lifeblood of the innocent poor.
You did not catch them breaking in.
Yet in spite of all these things,
‘I am innocent.
Surely his anger has turned from me.’
Now I am bringing you to judgment
‘I have not sinned.’
How lightly you gad about
Changing your ways!
You shall be put to shame by Egypt
As you were put to shame by Assyria!
From there also
You will come away
With your hands
Upon your head.
Yahweh has rejected those
In whom you trust.
You will not prosper through them.”
The Israelites were seeking new lovers. They were teaching them their ways. They seem not to care about the innocent poor people, since they had their blood on their skirts. Yet they continued to proclaim their innocence. They thought that Yahweh was no longer angry with them. However, Yahweh was going to bring judgment upon them for saying that they had not sinned. They keep gadding about on their frivolous ways. They were going to be put to shame by Egypt and Assyria so that they would walk out with their hands on their heads as prisoners. Yahweh has rejected them and their leaders so that they would not prosper.