Chapter 5

1Stroll in the streets of Jerusalem, and see now and know, and seek in its squares, whether you will find a man, whether there is one who performs justice, who seeks faith, and I will forgive her.   אשֽׁוֹטְט֞וּ בְּחוּצ֣וֹת יְרֽוּשָׁלִַ֗ם וּרְאוּ־נָ֚א וּדְעוּ֙ וּבַקְשׁ֣וּ בִרְחֽוֹבוֹתֶ֔יהָ אִם־תִּמְצְא֣וּ אִ֔ישׁ אִם־יֵ֛שׁ עֹשֶׂ֥ה מִשְׁפָּ֖ט מְבַקֵּ֣שׁ אֱמוּנָ֑ה וְאֶסְלַ֖ח לָֽהּ:
2And if they say, "As the Lord lives," they, nevertheless, will swear falsely.   בוְאִ֥ם חַי־יְהֹוָ֖ה יֹאמֵ֑רוּ לָכֵ֥ן לַשֶּׁ֖קֶר יִשָּׁבֵֽעוּ:
3O Lord, are not Your eyes upon faith? You smote them but they felt no pain, You consumed them, [but] they refused to receive correction. They have made their faces harder than a rock, they have refused to repent.   גיְהֹוָ֗ה עֵינֶיךָ֘ הֲל֣וֹא לֶֽאֱמוּנָה֒ הִכִּ֚יתָה אֹתָם֙ וְלֹא־חָ֔לוּ כִּלִּיתָ֕ם מֵֽאֲנ֖וּ קַ֣חַת מוּסָ֑ר חִזְּק֚וּ פְנֵיהֶם֙ מִסֶּ֔לַע מֵֽאֲנ֖וּ לָשֽׁוּב:
O Lord, Your eyes: are they not on people with faith, to do good to them? Now why have these betrayed You, and they do not seek faith?  
You smote them: and they did not become ill because of the blow to lay it to their heart to repent of their evil.  
to receive: Heb. קחת, equivalent to (לקחת) , to receive.  
4And I said, "But they are poor, they have become foolish, for they did not know the way of the Lord, the judgment of their God.   דוַֽאֲנִ֣י אָמַ֔רְתִּי אַךְ־דַּלִּ֖ים הֵ֑ם נֽוֹאֲל֕וּ כִּ֣י לֹ֚א יָֽדְעוּ֙ דֶּ֣רֶךְ יְהֹוָ֔ה מִשְׁפַּ֖ט אֱלֹֽהֵיהֶֽם:
And I said: The prophet says so, “They are but impoverished of wisdom,” these with whom I speak.  
they have become foolish: Heb. נואלו, an expression of אויל, a fool, as the Targum renders: אטפשו.  
5I will go to the great ones and speak with them, for they know the way of the Lord, the judgment of their God: but they together broke the yoke, burst the bands.   האֵֽלְכָה־לִּ֚י אֶל־הַגְּדֹלִים֙ וַֽאֲדַבְּרָ֣ה אוֹתָ֔ם כִּ֣י הֵ֗מָּה יָֽדְעוּ֙ דֶּ֣רֶךְ יְהֹוָ֔ה מִשְׁפַּ֖ט אֱלֹֽהֵיהֶ֑ם אַ֣ךְ הֵ֚מָּה יַחְדָּו֙ שָׁ֣בְרוּ עֹ֔ל נִתְּק֖וּ מֽוֹסֵרֽוֹת:
I will go to the great ones: They will hearken. But I did not avail, and they too together broke the yoke of the Holy One, blessed be He, off them.  
6Therefore, a lion from the forest smote them, a wolf of the deserts spoils them, a leopard hastens upon their cities, anyone who comes out of them shall be torn to pieces, for their transgressions are many, their backslidings are increased.   ועַל־כֵּן֩ הִכָּ֨ם אַרְיֵ֜ה מִיַּ֗עַר זְאֵ֚ב עֲרָבוֹת֙ יְשָׁדְדֵ֔ם נָמֵ֚ר שֹׁקֵד֙ עַל־עָ֣רֵיהֶ֔ם כָּל־הַיּוֹצֵ֥א מֵהֵ֖נָּה יִטָּרֵ֑ף כִּ֚י רַבּוּ֙ פִּשְׁעֵיהֶ֔ם עָֽצְמ֖וּ מְשֻׁבֽוֹתֵיהֶֽם:
a lion: The kingdom of Babylon.  
a wolf: The kingdom of Media.  
a leopard: The kingdom of Greece.  
shall be torn to pieces: by Edom.  
a wolf of the deserts: Heb. ערבות, an expression of (supra 2:6) ערבה ושוחה“plains and pits,” a wolf of the desert.  
hastens: Heb. שקד. Menahem (p. 180) associates it with an expression of watching. Comp. (Prov. 8:34) “To watch (לשקוד) My doors daily.” And Jonathan rendered it as an expression of lying in wait.  
7Shall I forgive you for this? Your children have forsaken Me, and they swore by no-gods. Here I sated them and they committed adultery, and they banded together in the house of a harlot.   זאֵ֚י לָזֹאת֙ אֶסְלַח־ (כתיב אֶסְלַוח־) לָ֔ךְ בָּנַ֣יִךְ עֲזָב֔וּנִי וַיִּשָּֽׁבְע֖וּ בְּלֹ֣א אֱלֹהִ֑ים וָֽאַשְׂבִּ֚עַ אוֹתָם֙ וַיִּנְאָ֔פוּ וּבֵ֥ית זוֹנָ֖ה יִתְגּוֹדָֽדוּ:
Shall I forgive you for this?: This is the rhetorical question, Shall I forgive you for this? And Menahem (p. 22) explains אי like אין, not. For this I will not forgive you, because your children have forsaken Me, when I sated them with all good.  
they banded together: They gather in troops.  
8Like armed stallions, they would arise early; they would neigh, each one over his friend's wife.   חסוּסִ֥ים מְיֻזָּנִ֖ים (כתיב מְוֻזָּנִ֖ים) מַשְׁכִּ֣ים הָי֑וּ אִ֛ישׁ אֶל־אֵ֥שֶׁת רֵעֵ֖הוּ יִצְהָֽלוּ:
Like armed stallions they would arise early: Like these stallions who are armed with erect membra, every morning they would arise at daybreak.  
they would neigh: Heb. יצהלו. This too is an expression appropriate for horses. Comp. (8:16) “From the sound of the neighing (מצהלות) of his steeds,” an expression of shouting (esjodement in O.F.).  
9Shall I not punish for these things? says the Lord, or for a nation such as this shall My soul not wreak vengeance?   טהַֽעַל־אֵ֥לֶּה לֽוֹא־אֶפְקֹ֖ד נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֑ה וְאִם֙ בְּג֣וֹי אֲשֶׁר־כָּזֶ֔ה לֹ֥א תִתְנַקֵּ֖ם נַפְשִֽׁי:
10Ascend upon its rows and destroy, but make no complete end; remove its roots, for they are not the Lord's.   יעֲל֚וּ בְשָֽׁרוֹתֶ֙יהָ֙ וְשַׁחֵ֔תוּ וְכָלָ֖ה אַֽל־תַּֽעֲשׂ֑וּ הָסִ֙ירוּ֙ נְטִ֣ישׁוֹתֶ֔יהָ כִּ֛י ל֥וֹא לַֽיהֹוָ֖ה הֵֽמָּה:
Ascend upon its rows: Heb. בשרותיה, an expression of a plain. Menahem (p. 181) associates it as an expression of a wall with (II Sam. 22: 30) “I scale a wall (שור),” but נטישותיה (cep in Prov.) do not fitfor they are the roots of the vineyard to be associated either with the walls or with the plain. I say, therefore, that בשרותיה is an expression of the rows of the vineyard. Jonathan, however, rendered בשרותיה, in her cities, and נטישותיה, her palaces.  
11For the house of Israel and the house of Judah have dealt treacherously with Me, says the Lord.   יאכִּי֩ בָג֨וֹד בָּֽגְד֜וּ בִּ֗י בֵּ֧ית יִשְׂרָאֵ֛ל וּבֵ֥ית יְהוּדָ֖ה נְאֻם־יְהֹוָֽה:
12They denied the Lord and said, "It is not He, and no evil will befall us, neither will we see sword or famine.   יבכִּֽחֲשׁוּ֙ בַּֽיהֹוָ֔ה וַיֹּֽאמְר֖וּ לוֹא־ה֑וּא וְלֹֽא־תָב֚וֹא עָלֵ֙ינוּ֙ רָעָ֔ה וְחֶ֥רֶב וְרָעָ֖ב ל֥וֹא נִרְאֶֽה:
And [they] said, “It is not He”: [The Targum renders:] Our good fortune does not come before Him.  
13And the prophets shall become wind, for there is no speech in them." So shall be done to them.   יגוְהַנְּבִיאִים֙ יִֽהְי֣וּ לְר֔וּחַ וְהַדִּבֵּ֖ר אֵ֣ין בָּהֶ֑ם כֹּ֥ה יֵֽעָשֶׂ֖ה לָהֶֽם:
And the prophets shall become wind: As the Targum renders: And the false prophets shall become naught. That is to say, the prophecy that the false prophets prophesy for us in the name of the Holy One, blessed be Hetheir words shall turn to futility, and the speech of holiness that they say to us in the name of the Holy One, blessed be He, is not in them.  
So shall be done to them: The prophet says to those who say this, “So shall be done to them as the Lord said to me, and what did the Lord say to me?” Because you have spoken this word, etc."  
14Therefore, so says the Lord God of Hosts, because you have spoken this word. Behold I put My words into your mouth as fire, and this people [shall be wood] and it shall consume them.   ידלָכֵ֗ן כֹּֽה־אָמַ֚ר יְהֹוָה֙ אֱלֹהֵ֣י צְבָא֔וֹת יַעַן דַּבֶּרְכֶ֔ם אֶת־הַדָּבָ֖ר הַזֶּ֑ה הִנְנִ֣י נֹתֵן֩ דְּבָרַ֨י בְּפִ֜יךָ לְאֵ֗שׁ וְהָעָ֥ם הַזֶּ֛ה עֵצִ֖ים וַֽאֲכָלָֽתַם:
and it shall consume them: Heb. ואכלתם.  
15Behold I bring upon you a nation from afar, O house of Israel, says the Lord; it is a mighty nation, it is an ancient nation, a nation whose language you will not know, and you will not understand what he will speak.   טוהִנְנִ֣י מֵבִיא֩ עֲלֵיכֶ֨ם גּ֧וֹי מִמֶּרְחָ֛ק בֵּ֥ית יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֑ה גּ֣וֹי | אֵיתָ֣ן ה֗וּא גּ֚וֹי מֵֽעוֹלָם֙ ה֔וּא גּוֹי לֹֽא־תֵדַ֣ע לְשֹׁנ֔וֹ וְלֹ֥א תִשְׁמַ֖ע מַה־יְדַבֵּֽר:
mighty: Heb. איתן, strong.  
It is an ancient nation: From days of yore it began to rebel against Me, in the generation of separation in the land of Shinar.  
16His quiver is like an open grave, all of them are mighty men.   טזאַשְׁפָּת֖וֹ כְּקֶ֣בֶר פָּת֑וּחַ כֻּלָּ֖ם גִּבּוֹרִֽים:
His quiver: Heb. אשפתו. The place of the arrow case.  
17And he will devour your harvest and your bread; they will devour your sons and your daughters; he will devour your flocks and your cattle; he will devour your vines and your fig trees; he will impoverish your fortified cities upon which you rely, with the sword.   יזוְאָכַ֨ל קְצִֽירְךָ֜ וְלַחְמֶ֗ךָ יֹֽאכְלוּ֙ בָּנֶ֣יךָ וּבְנוֹתֶ֔יךָ יֹאכַ֚ל צֹֽאנְךָ֙ וּבְקָרֶ֔ךָ יֹאכַ֥ל גַּפְנְךָ֖ וּתְאֵֽנָתֶ֑ךָ יְרֹשֵׁ֞שׁ עָרֵ֣י מִבְצָרֶ֗יךָ אֲשֶׁ֥ר אַתָּ֛ה בֹּטֵ֥חַ בָּהֵ֖נָּה בֶּחָֽרֶב:
He will impoverish your fortified cities [upon which you rely, with the sword]: This verse is in the wrong order [and should be arranged as follows:] He will impoverish with the sword your fortified cities upon which you rely.  
impoverish: Heb. ירשש, he will impoverish.  
with the sword: With troops. Comp.“And a sword will not pass in your land” (Lev. 26:6).  
18And also in those days, says the Lord, I will not make an end to you.   יחוְגַ֛ם בַּיָּמִ֥ים הָהֵ֖מָּה נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֑ה לֹֽא־אֶעֱשֶׂ֥ה אִתְּכֶ֖ם כָּלָֽה:
19And it will be that you will say, "For what reason has the Lord our God done all these to us?" you shall say to them: As you have forsaken Me and worshipped foreign gods in your land, so shall you serve strangers in a land not yours.   יטוְהָיָה֙ כִּ֣י תֹאמְר֔וּ תַּ֣חַת מֶ֗ה עָשָׂ֨ה יְהֹוָ֧ה אֱלֹהֵ֛ינוּ לָ֖נוּ אֶת־כָּל־אֵ֑לֶּה וְאָמַרְתָּ֣ אֲלֵיהֶ֗ם כַּֽאֲשֶׁ֨ר עֲזַבְתֶּ֚ם אוֹתִי֙ וַתַּֽעַבְד֞וּ אֱלֹהֵ֚י נֵכָר֙ בְּאַרְצְכֶ֔ם כֵּן תַּעַבְד֣וּ זָרִ֔ים בְּאֶ֖רֶץ לֹ֥א לָכֶֽם:
20Tell this in the house of Jacob and make it heard in Judah, saying:   כהַגִּ֥ידוּ זֹ֖את בְּבֵ֣ית יַֽעֲקֹ֑ב וְהַשְׁמִיע֥וּהָ בִֽיהוּדָ֖ה לֵאמֹֽר:
21Hearken to this, foolish people without understanding; they have eyes yet they see not, they have ears yet they hear not.   כאשִׁמְעוּ־נָ֣א זֹ֔את עַ֥ם סָכָ֖ל וְאֵ֣ין לֵ֑ב עֵינַ֚יִם לָהֶם֙ וְלֹ֣א יִרְא֔וּ אָזְנַ֥יִם לָהֶ֖ם וְלֹ֥א יִשְׁמָֽעוּ:
22Will you not fear Me? says the Lord, or, do you not quake from before Me, for I made sand a boundary for the sea, an everlasting ordinance, which it cannot pass, and [its waves] toss themselves, yet they cannot prevail; and its waves roar, but they do not pass it.   כבהַֽאוֹתִ֨י לֹֽא־תִירָ֜אוּ נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֗ה אִ֚ם מִפָּנַי֙ לֹ֣א תָחִ֔ילוּ אֲשֶׁר־שַׂ֚מְתִּי חוֹל֙ גְּב֣וּל לַיָּ֔ם חָק־עוֹלָ֖ם וְלֹ֣א יַֽעַבְרֶ֑נְהוּ וַיִּֽתְגָּֽעֲשׁוּ֙ וְלֹ֣א יוּכָ֔לוּ וְהָמ֥וּ גַלָּ֖יו וְלֹ֥א יַֽעַבְרֻֽנְהוּ:
Will you not fear Me?: Does not the sea, which is not concerned about retribution and does not look forward to receiving reward, fear Me and not cross the boundary that I set around it?  
do you not quake: Heb. תחילו, an expression of fear.  
and toss themselves: i.e., its waves, and they lift themselves to cross the border but cannot cross.  
and its waves roar: A loud sound of roaring.  
but they do not pass it: The waves do not pass the border.  
23And this people had a revolting and rebellious heart; they turned away and they were gone.   כגוְלָעָ֚ם הַזֶּה֙ הָיָ֔ה לֵ֖ב סוֹרֵ֣ר וּמוֹרֶ֑ה סָ֖רוּ וַיֵּלֵֽכוּ:
24And they did not say in their heart, "Let us now fear the Lord our God, Who gives rain, the early rain and the latter rain in its time, the weeks of the laws of harvest He keeps for us."   כדוְלוֹא־אָֽמְר֣וּ בִלְבָבָ֗ם נִ֚ירָא נָא֙ אֶת־יְהֹוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֵ֔ינוּ הַנֹּתֵ֥ן גֶּ֛שֶׁם יוֹרֶ֥ה (כתיב ויֹרֶ֥ה) וּמַלְק֖וֹשׁ בְּעִתּ֑וֹ שְׁבֻעֹ֛ת חֻקּ֥וֹת קָצִ֖יר יִשְׁמָר־לָֽנוּ:
the early rain and the latter rain: Heb. יורה ומלקוש, as the Targum renders: בכיר ולקיש, the early rain and the latter rain.  
the weeks of the laws of harvest: Seven weeks in which He ordained two ordinances of harvest, the ordinance of the omer, and the ordinance of the two breads.  
He keeps for us: that the harvest should be in its time.  
25Your iniquities have brought these about, and your sins have withheld the good from you.   כהעֲו‍ֹנֽוֹתֵיכֶ֖ם הִטּוּ־אֵ֑לֶּה וְחַטֹּ֣אותֵיכֶ֔ם מָֽנְע֥וּ הַטּ֖וֹב מִכֶּֽם:
have brought about these: Have brought about these laws. Have cast aside these laws from you, so they don’t guard you and you will be consumed from hunger.  
26For wicked men are found in My people; they lie in wait as a trap bites; they station an ambush, they catch people.   כוכִּֽי־נִמְצְא֥וּ בְעַמִּ֖י רְשָׁעִ֑ים יָשׁוּר֙ כְּשַׁ֣ךְ יְקוּשִׁ֔ים הִצִּ֥יבוּ מַשְׁחִ֖ית אֲנָשִׁ֥ים יִלְכֹּֽדוּ:
they lie in wait: Heb. ישור. Comp. למען שוררי because of those who lie in wait for me (Psalms 27: 11), an expression of “I see him (אשורנו) but not near” (Num. 24:17).  
as a trap bites: As a trap that they make to catch deer in the forest, bites when his foot enters it and it bites him and holds onto his foot and he is caught, and the call this (piege in O. F.).  
they stationed an ambush: (Canbel in O. F.) So do those who lie in wait make for a city or on the road.  
they station: Heb. יציבו, like “the garrison (מצב) of the Philistines” (I Sam. 14:4).  
27As a cage is full, so are their houses full of deceit; therefore, they have become great and they have become rich.   כזכִּכְלוּב֙ מָ֣לֵא ע֔וֹף כֵּ֥ן בָּתֵּיהֶ֖ם מְלֵאִ֣ים מִרְמָ֑ה עַל־כֵּ֥ן גָּֽדְל֖וּ וַֽיַּֽעֲשִֽׁירוּ:
As a cage: That is a place where they fatten fowl, and so does Jonathan render it, like a fattening place, and in O.F. (frank).  
28They have become fat, they have become thick; also they transgress in deeds of wickedness; they did not plead the cause of an orphan that they prosper, and the judgment of the poor they did not judge.   כחשָֽׁמְנ֣וּ עָֽשְׁת֗וּ גַּם עָֽבְר֣וּ דִבְרֵי־רָ֔ע דִּ֣ין לֹֽא־דָ֔נוּ דִּ֥ין יָת֖וֹם וְיַצְלִ֑יחוּ וּמִשְׁפַּ֥ט אֶבְיוֹנִ֖ים לֹ֥א שָׁפָֽטוּ:
they have become thick: Heb. עשתו, an expression of “a block (עֶשֶת) of ivory” (Song 5:14), a thick body, and in O.F. enboeront.  
they transgressed in deeds of wickedness: If evil or a sin came into their hand, they did not turn away from it, but transgressed it and committed it.  
they did not plead the cause of the orphan: in order that they prosper.  
29Shall I not punish for these? says the Lord, or for such a nation shall My soul not take vengeance?   כטהַֽעַל־אֵ֥לֶּה לֹֽא־אֶפְקֹ֖ד נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֑ה אִם בְּג֣וֹי אֲשֶׁר־כָּזֶ֔ה לֹ֥א תִתְנַקֵּ֖ם נַפְשִֽׁי:
30An appalling and horrible thing has come about in the land.   לשַׁמָּה֙ וְשַׁ֣עֲרוּרָ֔ה נִֽהְיְתָ֖ה בָּאָֽרֶץ:
An appalling… thing: Heb. שמה, a wonder.  
and horrible thing: Heb. ושערורה, a disgraceful thing to all, and what is the appalling thing? The prophets prophesy falsely and say, “Rob and plunder,” and the priests, who are the judges of the people and their overseers, govern the people on the hands of the prophets, that is to say, after them. Comp. (II Sam. 15) “And the king was crossing and all the people were crossing on his hand,” stated concerning David, meaning ‘after him.’ Here too, “on their hands” means ‘after them,’ to do according to the words of the prophets.  
31The prophets have prophesied falsely, and the priests govern after them, and My people love to have it so. Now what shall you do in the end thereof?   לאהַנְּבִאִ֞ים נִבְּא֣וּ־בַשֶּׁ֗קֶר וְהַכֹּֽהֲנִים֙ יִרְדּ֣וּ עַל־יְדֵיהֶ֔ם וְעַמִּ֖י אָֽ֣הֲבוּ כֵ֑ן וּמַֽה־תַּֽעֲשׂ֖וּ לְאַֽחֲרִיתָֽהּ: