Lamentações 1

1 [^1] How deserted lies the city, ¶ once so full of people! ¶ How like a widow is she, ¶ who once was great among the nations! ¶ She who was queen among the provinces ¶ has now become a slave.

2 Bitterly she weeps at night, ¶ tears are on her cheeks. ¶ Among all her lovers ¶ there is no one to comfort her. ¶ All her friends have betrayed her; ¶ they have become her enemies.

3 After affliction and harsh labor, ¶ Judah has gone into exile. ¶ She dwells among the nations; ¶ she finds no resting place. ¶ All who pursue her have overtaken her ¶ in the midst of her distress.

4 The roads to Zion mourn, ¶ for no one comes to her appointed festivals. ¶ All her gateways are desolate, ¶ her priests groan, ¶ her young women grieve, ¶ and she is in bitter anguish.

5 Her foes have become her masters; ¶ her enemies are at ease. ¶ The LORD has brought her grief ¶ because of her many sins. ¶ Her children have gone into exile, ¶ captive before the foe.

6 All the splendor has departed ¶ from Daughter Zion. ¶ Her princes are like deer ¶ that find no pasture; ¶ in weakness they have fled ¶ before the pursuer.

7 In the days of her affliction and wandering ¶ Jerusalem remembers all the treasures ¶ that were hers in days of old. ¶ When her people fell into enemy hands, ¶ there was no one to help her. ¶ Her enemies looked at her ¶ and laughed at her destruction.

8 Jerusalem has sinned greatly ¶ and so has become unclean. ¶ All who honored her despise her, ¶ for they have all seen her naked; ¶ she herself groans ¶ and turns away.

9 Her filthiness clung to her skirts; ¶ she did not consider her future. ¶ Her fall was astounding; ¶ there was none to comfort her. ¶ "Look, LORD, on my affliction, ¶ for the enemy has triumphed."

10 The enemy laid hands ¶ on all her treasures; ¶ she saw pagan nations ¶ enter her sanctuary — ¶ those you had forbidden ¶ to enter your assembly.

11 All her people groan ¶ as they search for bread; ¶ they barter their treasures for food ¶ to keep themselves alive. ¶ "Look, LORD, and consider, ¶ for I am despised."

12 "Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? ¶ Look around and see. ¶ Is any suffering like my suffering ¶ that was inflicted on me, ¶ that the LORD brought on me ¶ in the day of his fierce anger?

13 "From on high he sent fire, ¶ sent it down into my bones. ¶ He spread a net for my feet ¶ and turned me back. ¶ He made me desolate, ¶ faint all the day long.

14 "My sins have been bound into a yoke [^2] ; ¶ by his hands they were woven together. ¶ They have been hung on my neck, ¶ and the Lord has sapped my strength. ¶ He has given me into the hands ¶ of those I cannot withstand.

15 "The Lord has rejected ¶ all the warriors in my midst; ¶ he has summoned an army against me ¶ to [^3] crush my young men. ¶ In his winepress the Lord has trampled ¶ Virgin Daughter Judah.

16 "This is why I weep ¶ and my eyes overflow with tears. ¶ No one is near to comfort me, ¶ no one to restore my spirit. ¶ My children are destitute ¶ because the enemy has prevailed."

17 Zion stretches out her hands, ¶ but there is no one to comfort her. ¶ The LORD has decreed for Jacob ¶ that his neighbors become his foes; ¶ Jerusalem has become ¶ an unclean thing among them.

18 "The LORD is righteous, ¶ yet I rebelled against his command. ¶ Listen, all you peoples; ¶ look on my suffering. ¶ My young men and young women ¶ have gone into exile.

19 "I called to my allies ¶ but they betrayed me. ¶ My priests and my elders ¶ perished in the city ¶ while they searched for food ¶ to keep themselves alive.

20 "See, LORD, how distressed I am! ¶ I am in torment within, ¶ and in my heart I am disturbed, ¶ for I have been most rebellious. ¶ Outside, the sword bereaves; ¶ inside, there is only death.

21 "People have heard my groaning, ¶ but there is no one to comfort me. ¶ All my enemies have heard of my distress; ¶ they rejoice at what you have done. ¶ May you bring the day you have announced ¶ so they may become like me.

22 "Let all their wickedness come before you; ¶ deal with them ¶ as you have dealt with me ¶ because of all my sins. ¶ My groans are many ¶ and my heart is faint."