False Gods Contrasted with the Creator

Hear the word that the Lord has spoken to[a] you, house of Israel. This is what the Lord says:

Do not learn the way of the nations

or be terrified by signs in the heavens,

although the nations are terrified by them,

for the customs of the peoples are worthless.

Someone cuts down a tree from the forest;

it is worked by the hands of a craftsman with a chisel.

He decorates it with silver and gold.

It is fastened with hammer and nails,

so it won’t totter.

Like scarecrows in a cucumber patch,

their idols cannot speak.

They must be carried because they cannot walk.

Do not fear them for they can do no harm—

and they cannot do any good.

Yahweh, there is no one like You.

You are great;

Your name is great in power.

Who should not fear You,

King of the nations?

It is what You deserve.

For among all the wise people of the nations

and among all their kingdoms,

there is no one like You.

They are both stupid and foolish,

instructed by worthless idols

made of wood!

Beaten silver is brought from Tarshish,

and gold from Uphaz[b]

from the hands of a goldsmith,

the work of a craftsman.

Their clothing is blue and purple,

all the work of skilled artisans.

10 But Yahweh is the true God;

He is the living God and eternal King.

The earth quakes at His wrath,

and the nations cannot endure His rage.

11 You are to say this to them, “The gods that did not make the heavens and the earth will perish from the earth and from under these heavens.”[c]

12 He made the earth by His power,

established the world by His wisdom,

and spread out the heavens by His understanding.

13 When He thunders,[d]

the waters in the heavens are in turmoil,

and He causes the clouds to rise

from the ends of the earth.

He makes lightning for the rain

and brings the wind from His storehouses.

14 Everyone is stupid and ignorant.

Every goldsmith is put to shame

by his carved image,

for his cast images are a lie;

there is no breath in them.

15 They are worthless, a work to be mocked.

At the time of their punishment

they will be destroyed.

16 Jacob’s Portion[e] is not like these

because He is the One who formed all things.

Israel is the tribe of His inheritance;

Yahweh of Hosts is His name.

Exile After the Siege

17 Gather up your belongings[f] from the ground,

you who live under siege.

18 For this is what the Lord says:

Look, I am slinging out

the land’s residents at this time

and bringing them such distress

that they will feel it.

Jeremiah Grieves

19 Woe to me because of my brokenness—

I am severely wounded!

I exclaimed, “This is my intense suffering,

but I must bear it.”

20 My tent is destroyed;

all my tent cords are snapped.

My sons have departed from me and are no more.

I have no one to pitch my tent again

or to hang up my curtains.

21 For the shepherds are stupid:

they don’t seek the Lord.

Therefore they have not prospered,

and their whole flock is scattered.

22 Listen! A noise—it is coming—

a great commotion from the land to the north.

The cities of Judah will be made desolate,

a jackals’ den.

23 I know, Lord,

that a man’s way of life is not his own;

no one who walks determines his own steps.

24 Discipline me, Lord, but with justice—

not in Your anger,

or You will reduce me to nothing.

25 Pour out Your wrath on the nations

that don’t recognize You

and on the families

that don’t call on Your name,

for they have consumed Jacob;

they have consumed him and finished him off

and made his homeland desolate.


  1. Jeremiah 10:1 Or against
  2. Jeremiah 10:9 Or Ophir
  3. Jeremiah 10:11 This is the only Aram v. in Jr.
  4. Jeremiah 10:13 Lit At His giving of the voice
  5. Jeremiah 10:16 = the Lord
  6. Jeremiah 10:17 Lit bundle