Chapter 6

1Flee for refuge, O people of Binyamin, Out of the midst of Yerushalayim! Blow the shofar in Tekoa, Set up a signal at Beth-haccerem! For evil is appearing from the north, And great disaster.

אהָעִזוּ בְּנֵי בִניָמִן מִקֶּרֶב יְרוּשָׁלַ ִם וּבִתְקוֹעַ תִּקְעוּ שׁוֹפָר וְעַל־בֵּית הַכֶּרֶם שְׂאוּ מַשְׂאֵת כִּי רָעָה נִשְׁקְפָה מִצָּפוֹן וְשֶׁבֶר גָּדוֹל׃

2Fair Tzion, the lovely and delicate, I will destroy.

ha-na-VAH v'-ha-m'-u-na-GAH da-MEE-tee bat tzi-YON

בהַנָּוָה וְהַמְּעֻנָּגָה דָּמִיתִי בַּת־צִיּוֹן׃

 6:2   The lovely and delicate

Rashi (1040-1105)

In describing the coming invasion, Yirmiyahu describes Tzion as “lovely and delicate.” Some commentators suggest that this is a mocking reference to the women of Yerushalayim, whose extravagant tastes and styles contrast with the simple and honest manners of the country dwellers. Rashi, however, understands the phrase “lovely and delicate” as a description of the Land of Israel itself. Her gentle green hills and rolling pastures provided perfect grounds for shepherds to graze their flocks, as described in the next verse.

3Against her come shepherds with their flocks, They pitch tents all around her; Each grazes the sheep under his care.

גאֵלֶיהָ יָבֹאוּ רֹעִים וְעֶדְרֵיהֶם תָּקְעוּ עָלֶיהָ אֹהָלִים סָבִיב רָעוּ אִישׁ אֶת־יָדוֹ׃

4Prepare for battle against her: “Up! we will attack at noon.” “Alas for us! for day is declining, The shadows of evening grow long.”

דקַדְּשׁוּ עָלֶיהָ מִלְחָמָה קוּמוּ וְנַעֲלֶה בַצָּהֳרָיִם אוֹי לָנוּ כִּי־פָנָה הַיּוֹם כִּי יִנָּטוּ צִלְלֵי־עָרֶב׃

5“Up! let us attack by night, And wreck her fortresses.”

הקוּמוּ וְנַעֲלֶה בַלָּיְלָה וְנַשְׁחִיתָה אַרְמְנוֹתֶיהָ׃

6For thus said the lord of Hosts: Hew down her trees, And raise a siegemound against Yerushalayim. She is the city destined for punishment; Only fraud is found in her midst.

וכִּי כֹה אָמַר יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת כִּרְתוּ עֵצָה וְשִׁפְכוּ עַל־יְרוּשָׁלַ ִם סֹלְלָה הִיא הָעִיר הָפְקַד כֻּלָּהּ עֹשֶׁק בְּקִרְבָּהּ׃

7As a well flows with water, So she flows with wickedness. Lawlessness and rapine are heard in her; Before Me constantly are sickness and wounds.

זכְּהָקִיר בור [בַּיִר] מֵימֶיהָ כֵּן הֵקֵרָה רָעָתָהּ חָמָס וָשֹׁד יִשָּׁמַע בָּהּ עַל־פָּנַי תָּמִיד חֳלִי וּמַכָּה׃

8Accept rebuke, O Yerushalayim, Lest I come to loathe you, Lest I make you a desolation, An uninhabited land.

חהִוָּסְרִי יְרוּשָׁלַ ִם פֶּן־תֵּקַע נַפְשִׁי מִמֵּךְ פֶּן־אֲשִׂימֵךְ שְׁמָמָה אֶרֶץ לוֹא נוֹשָׁבָה׃

9Thus said the lord of Hosts: Let them glean over and over, as a vine, The remnant of Yisrael. Pass your hand again, Like a vintager, Over its branches.

טכֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת עוֹלֵל יְעוֹלְלוּ כַגֶּפֶן שְׁאֵרִית יִשְׂרָאֵל הָשֵׁב יָדְךָ כְּבוֹצֵר עַל־סַלְסִלּוֹת׃

10To whom shall I speak, Give warning that they may hear? Their ears are blocked And they cannot listen. See, the word of Hashem has become for them An object of scorn; they will have none of it.

יעַל־מִי אֲדַבְּרָה וְאָעִידָה וְיִשְׁמָעוּ הִנֵּה עֲרֵלָה אָזְנָם וְלֹא יוּכְלוּ לְהַקְשִׁיב הִנֵּה דְבַר־יְהֹוָה הָיָה לָהֶם לְחֶרְפָּה לֹא יַחְפְּצוּ־בוֹ׃

11But I am filled with the wrath of Hashem, I cannot hold it in. Pour it on the infant in the street, And on the company of youths gathered together! Yes, men and women alike shall be captured, Elders and those of advanced years.

יאוְאֵת חֲמַת יְהֹוָה מָלֵאתִי נִלְאֵיתִי הָכִיל שְׁפֹךְ עַל־עוֹלָל בַּחוּץ וְעַל סוֹד בַּחוּרִים יַחְדָּו כִּי־גַם־אִישׁ עִם־אִשָּׁה יִלָּכֵדוּ זָקֵן עִם־מְלֵא יָמִים׃

12Their houses shall pass to others, Fields and wives as well, For I will stretch out My arm Against the inhabitants of the country —declares Hashem.

יבוְנָסַבּוּ בָתֵּיהֶם לַאֲחֵרִים שָׂדוֹת וְנָשִׁים יַחְדָּו כִּי־אַטֶּה אֶת־יָדִי עַל־יֹשְׁבֵי הָאָרֶץ נְאֻם־יְהֹוָה׃

13For from the smallest to the greatest, They are all greedy for gain; Kohen and Navi alike, They all act falsely.

יגכִּי מִקְּטַנָּם וְעַד־גְּדוֹלָם כֻּלּוֹ בּוֹצֵעַ בָּצַע וּמִנָּבִיא וְעַד־כֹּהֵן כֻּלּוֹ עֹשֶׂה שָּׁקֶר׃

14They offer healing offhand For the wounds of My people, Saying, “All is well, all is well,” When nothing is well.

ידוַיְרַפְּאוּ אֶת־שֶׁבֶר עַמִּי עַל־נְקַלָּה לֵאמֹר שָׁלוֹם שָׁלוֹם וְאֵין שָׁלוֹם׃

15They have acted shamefully; They have done abhorrent things— Yet they do not feel shame, And they cannot be made to blush. Assuredly, they shall fall among the falling, They shall stumble at the time when I punish them —said Hashem.

טוהֹבִישׁוּ כִּי תוֹעֵבָה עָשׂוּ גַּם־בּוֹשׁ לֹא־יֵבוֹשׁוּ גַּם־הַכְלִים לֹא יָדָעוּ לָכֵן יִפְּלוּ בַנֹּפְלִים בְּעֵת־פְּקַדְתִּים יִכָּשְׁלוּ אָמַר יְהֹוָה׃

16Thus said Hashem: Stand by the roads and consider, Inquire about ancient paths: Which is the road to happiness? Travel it, and find tranquillity for yourselves. But they said, “We will not.”

טזכֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה עִמְדוּ עַל־דְּרָכִים וּרְאוּ וְשַׁאֲלוּ לִנְתִבוֹת עוֹלָם אֵי־זֶה דֶרֶךְ הַטּוֹב וּלְכוּ־בָהּ וּמִצְאוּ מַרְגּוֹעַ לְנַפְשְׁכֶם וַיֹּאמְרוּ לֹא נֵלֵךְ׃

17And I raised up watchmen for you: “Hearken to the sound of the shofar!” But they said, “We will not.”

יזוַהֲקִמֹתִי עֲלֵיכֶם צֹפִים הַקְשִׁיבוּ לְקוֹל שׁוֹפָר וַיֹּאמְרוּ לֹא נַקְשִׁיב׃

18Hear well, O nations, And know, O community, what is in store for them.

יחלָכֵן שִׁמְעוּ הַגּוֹיִם וּדְעִי עֵדָה אֶת־אֲשֶׁר־בָּם׃

19Hear, O earth! I am going to bring disaster upon this people, The outcome of their own schemes; For they would not hearken to My words, And they rejected My Instruction.

יטשִׁמְעִי הָאָרֶץ הִנֵּה אָנֹכִי מֵבִיא רָעָה אֶל־הָעָם הַזֶּה פְּרִי מַחְשְׁבוֹתָם כִּי עַל־דְּבָרַי לֹא הִקְשִׁיבוּ וְתוֹרָתִי וַיִּמְאֲסוּ־בָהּ׃

20What need have I of frankincense That comes from Sheba, Or fragrant cane from a distant land? Your burnt offerings are not acceptable And your sacrifices are not pleasing to Me.

כלָמָּה־זֶּה לִי לְבוֹנָה מִשְּׁבָא תָבוֹא וְקָנֶה הַטּוֹב מֵאֶרֶץ מֶרְחָק עֹלוֹתֵיכֶם לֹא לְרָצוֹן וְזִבְחֵיכֶם לֹא־עָרְבוּ לִי׃

21Assuredly, thus said Hashem: I shall put before this people stumbling blocks Over which they shall stumble— Fathers and children alike, Neighbor and friend shall perish.

כאלָכֵן כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה הִנְנִי נֹתֵן אֶל־הָעָם הַזֶּה מִכְשֹׁלִים וְכָשְׁלוּ בָם אָבוֹת וּבָנִים יַחְדָּו שָׁכֵן וְרֵעוֹ יאבדו [וְאָבָדוּ׃]

22Thus said Hashem: See, a people comes from the northland, A great nation is roused From the remotest parts of the earth.

כבכֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה הִנֵּה עַם בָּא מֵאֶרֶץ צָפוֹן וְגוֹי גָּדוֹל יֵעוֹר מִיַּרְכְּתֵי־אָרֶץ׃

23They grasp the bow and javelin; They are cruel, they show no mercy; The sound of them is like the roaring sea. They ride upon horses, Accoutered like a man for battle, Against you, O Fair Tzion!

כגקֶשֶׁת וְכִידוֹן יַחֲזִיקוּ אַכְזָרִי הוּא וְלֹא יְרַחֵמוּ קוֹלָם כַּיָּם יֶהֱמֶה וְעַל־סוּסִים יִרְכָּבוּ עָרוּךְ כְּאִישׁ לַמִּלְחָמָה עָלַיִךְ בַּת־צִיּוֹן׃

24“We have heard the report of them, Our hands fail; Pain seizes us, Agony like a woman in childbirth.

כדשָׁמַעְנוּ אֶת־שָׁמְעוֹ רָפוּ יָדֵינוּ צָרָה הֶחֱזִיקַתְנוּ חִיל כַּיּוֹלֵדָה׃

25Do not go out into the country, Do not walk the roads! For the sword of the enemy is there, Terror on every side.”

כהאַל־תצאי [תֵּצְאוּ] הַשָּׂדֶה וּבַדֶּרֶךְ אַל־תלכי [תֵּלֵכוּ] כִּי חֶרֶב לְאֹיֵב מָגוֹר מִסָּבִיב׃

26My poor people, Put on sackcloth And strew dust on yourselves! Mourn, as for an only child; Wail bitterly, For suddenly the destroyer Is coming upon us.

כובַּת־עַמִּי חִגְרִי־שָׂק וְהִתְפַּלְּשִׁי בָאֵפֶר אֵבֶל יָחִיד עֲשִׂי לָךְ מִסְפַּד תַּמְרוּרִים כִּי פִתְאֹם יָבֹא הַשֹּׁדֵד עָלֵינוּ׃

27I have made you an assayer of My people —A refiner— You are to note and assay their ways.

כזבָּחוֹן נְתַתִּיךָ בְעַמִּי מִבְצָר וְתֵדַע וּבָחַנְתָּ אֶת־דַּרְכָּם׃

28They are copper and iron: They are all stubbornly defiant; They deal basely All of them act corruptly.

כחכֻּלָּם סָרֵי סוֹרְרִים הֹלְכֵי רָכִיל נְחֹשֶׁת וּבַרְזֶל כֻּלָּם מַשְׁחִיתִים הֵמָּה׃

29The bellows puff; The lead is consumed by fire. Yet the smelter smelts to no purpose— The dross is not separated out.

כטנָחַר מַפֻּחַ מאשתם [מֵאֵשׁ] [תַּם] עֹפָרֶת לַשָּׁוְא צָרַף צָרוֹף וְרָעִים לֹא נִתָּקוּ׃

30They are called “rejected silver,” For Hashem has rejected them.

לכֶּסֶף נִמְאָס קָרְאוּ לָהֶם כִּי־מָאַס יְהֹוָה בָּהֶם׃