A Rebellious People
Go now, write it before them on a tablet,
and inscribe it in a book,
so that it may be for the time to come
as a witness for ever.
For they are a rebellious people,
children who will not hear
the instruction of the Lord;
who say to the seers, ‘Do not see’;
and to the prophets, ‘Do not prophesy to us what is right;
speak to us smooth things,
leave the way, turn aside from the path,
let us hear no more about the Holy One of Israel.’
Therefore thus says the Holy One of Israel:
Because you reject this word,
and put your trust in oppression and deceit,
and rely on them;
therefore this iniquity shall become for you
like a break in a high wall, bulging out, and about to collapse,
whose crash comes suddenly, in an instant;
its breaking is like that of a potter’s vessel
that is smashed so ruthlessly
that among its fragments not a sherd is found
for taking fire from the hearth,
or dipping water out of the cistern.
For thus said the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel:
In returning and rest you shall be saved;
in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.
But you refused and said,
‘No! We will flee upon horses’—
therefore you shall flee!
and, ‘We will ride upon swift steeds’—
therefore your pursuers shall be swift!
A thousand shall flee at the threat of one,
at the threat of five you shall flee,
until you are left
like a flagstaff on the top of a mountain,
like a signal on a hill.