Let me sing, please, to my beloved one a song of my loved one concerning his vineyard. There was a vineyard that my beloved one came to have on a fruitful hillside. And he proceeded to dig it up and to rid it of stones and to plant it with a choice red vine, and to build a tower in the middle of it. And there was also a winepress that he hewed out in it. And he kept hoping for it to produce grapes, but it gradually produced wild grapes.
“And now, O YOU inhabitants of Jerusalem and YOU men of Judah, please judge between me and my vineyard. What is there yet to do for my vineyard that I have not already done in it? Why is it that I hoped for it to produce grapes, but it gradually produced wild grapes? And now, please, may I make known to YOU men what I am doing to my vineyard: There will be a removing of its hedge, and it must be destined for burning down. There must be a breaking down of its stone wall, and it must be destined for a place of trampling. And I shall set it as a thing destroyed. It will not be pruned, nor will it be hoed. And it must come up with the thornbush and weeds; and upon the clouds I shall lay a command to keep from precipitating any rain upon it. For the vineyard of Jehovah of armies is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah are the plantation of which he was fond. And he kept hoping for judgment, but, look! the breaking of law; for righteousness, but, look! an outcry.””
There was a word that Jehovah sent against Jacob, and it fell upon Israel. And the people will certainly know [it], even all of them, E′phra·im and the inhabitant of Sa·mar′i·a, because of [their] haughtiness and because of [their] insolence of heart in saying:
“Bricks are what have fallen, but with hewn stone we shall build. Sycamore trees are what have been cut down, but with cedars we shall make replacement.” And Jehovah will set the adversaries of Re′zin on high against him, and the enemies of that one he will goad on, Syria from the east and the Phi·lis′tines from behind, and they will eat up Israel with open mouth. In view of all this his anger has not turned back, but his hand is stretched out still.”
And the people themselves have not returned to the One striking them, and Jehovah of armies they have not sought. And Jehovah will cut off from Israel head and tail, shoot and rush, in one day. The aged and highly respected one is the head, and the prophet giving false instruction is the tail. And those who are leading this people on prove to be the ones causing [them] to wander; and those of them who are being led on, the ones who are being confused.
That is why Jehovah will not rejoice even over their young men, and upon their fatherless boys and upon their widows he will have no mercy; because all of them are apostates and evildoers and every mouth is speaking senselessness. In view of all this his anger has not turned back, but his hand is stretched out still.”
For wickedness has become aflame just like a fire; thornbushes and weeds it will eat up. And it will catch fire in the thickets of the forest, and they will be borne aloft as the billowing of smoke. In the fury of Jehovah of armies the land has been set afire, and the people will become as food for the fire. No one will show compassion even on his brother.
And one will cut down on the right and will certainly be hungry; and one will eat on the left, and they will certainly not be satisfied. They will each one eat the flesh of his own arm, Ma·nas′seh E′phra·im, and E′phra·im Ma·nas′seh. Together they will be against Judah. In view of all this his anger has not turned back, but his hand is stretched out still.”
Woe to those who are enacting harmful regulations and those who, constantly writing, have written out sheer trouble, in order to push away the lowly ones from a legal case and to wrest away justice from the afflicted ones of my people, for the widows to become their spoil, and that they may plunder even the fatherless boys!
And what will YOU men do at the day of being given attention and at the ruin, when it comes from far away? Toward whom will YOU flee for assistance, and where will YOU leave YOUR glory, except it be that one must bow down under the prisoners and that people keep falling under those who have been killed? In view of all this his anger has not turned back, but his hand is stretched out still.”
Woe to those who are mighty in drinking wine, and to the men with vital energy for mixing intoxicating liquor, those who are pronouncing the wicked one righteous in consideration of a bribe, and who take away even the righteousness of the righteous one from him!
Therefore just as a tongue of fire eats up the stubble and into the flames mere dried grass sinks down, their very rootstock will become just like a musty smell, and their blossom itself will go up just like powder, because they have rejected the law of Jehovah of armies, and the saying of the Holy One of Israel they have disrespected. That is why the anger of Jehovah has grown hot against his people, and he will stretch out his hand against them and strike them. And the mountains will be agitated, and their dead bodies will become like the offal in the midst of the streets. In view of all this his anger has not turned back, but his hand is stretched out still.”
In that day earthling man will look up to his Maker, and his own eyes will gaze at the Holy One of Israel himself. And he will not look to the altars, the work of his hands; and at what his fingers have made he will not gaze, either at the sacred poles or at the incense stands. In that day his fortress cities will become like a place left entirely in the woodland, even the branch that they have left entirely on account of the sons of Israel; and it must become a desolate waste.
For you have forgotten the God of your salvation; and the Rock of your fortress you have not remembered. That is why you plant pleasant plantations, and with the shoot of a stranger you set it. In the day you may carefully fence about the plantation of yours, and in the morning you may cause the seed of yours to sprout, [but] the harvest will certainly flee in the day of the disease and incurable pain.”