1 The LORD gave another message to Jeremiah. He said,
2 "Remind the people of Judah and Jerusalem about the terms of their covenant with me.
3 Say to them, `This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: Cursed is anyone who does not obey the terms of my covenant!
4 For I said to your ancestors when I brought them out of slavery in Egypt, "If you obey me and do whatever I command you, then you will be my people, and I will be your God."
5 I said this so I could keep my promise to your ancestors to give you a land flowing with milk and honey--the land you live in today.' " Then I replied, "So be it,* LORD!"1
6 Then the LORD said, "Broadcast this message in the streets of Jerusalem. Go from town to town throughout the land and say, `Remember the covenant your ancestors made, and do everything they promised.
7 For I solemnly warned your ancestors when I brought them out of Egypt, repeating over and over again to this day: "Obey me!"
8 But your ancestors did not pay any attention; they would not even listen. Instead, they stubbornly followed their own evil desires. And because they refused to obey, I brought upon them all the curses described in our covenant.' "
9 Again the LORD spoke to me and said, "I have discovered a conspiracy against me among the people of Judah and Jerusalem.
10 They have returned to the sins of their forefathers. They have refused to listen to me and are worshiping idols. Israel and Judah have both broken the covenant I made with their ancestors.
11 Therefore, says the LORD, I am going to bring calamity upon them, and they will not escape. Though they beg for mercy, I will not listen to their cries.
12 Then the people of Judah and Jerusalem will pray to their idols and offer incense before them. But the idols will not save them when disaster strikes!
13 Look now, people of Judah, you have as many gods as there are cities and towns. Your altars of shame--altars for burning incense to your god Baal--are along every street in Jerusalem.
14 "Pray no more for these people, Jeremiah. Do not weep or pray for them, for I will not listen to them when they cry out to me in distress.
15 What right do my beloved people have to come to my Temple, where they have done so many immoral things? Can their sacrifices avert their destruction? They actually rejoice in doing evil!
16 "I, the LORD, once called them a thriving olive tree, beautiful to see and full of good fruit. But now I have sent the fury of their enemies to burn them with fire, leaving them charred and broken.
17 I, the LORD Almighty, who planted this olive tree, have ordered it destroyed. For the people of Israel and Judah have done evil, provoking my anger by offering incense to Baal."
18 Then the LORD told me about the plots my enemies were making against me.
19 I had been as unaware as a lamb on the way to its slaughter. I had no idea that they were planning to kill me! "Let's destroy this man and all his words," they said. "Let's kill him, so his name will be forgotten forever."
20 O LORD Almighty, you are just, and you examine the deepest thoughts of hearts and minds. Let me see your vengeance against them, for I have committed my cause to you.
21 The men of Anathoth wanted me dead. They said they would kill me if I did not stop speaking in the LORD's name.
22 So this is what the LORD Almighty says about them: "I will punish them! Their young men will die in battle, and their little boys and girls will starve.
23 Not one of these plotters from Anathoth will survive, for I will bring disaster upon them when their time of punishment comes."
Read Jeremiah 12