You Shall Not Unpunished Go

Has the time come
     for all the nations,
          who've not obeyed,
               to drink the hot cup
                    of God's roiling wrath?

You are but a noise
     coming up from the desert,
          like a flood, like river waters.
You shall be quieted.

You are a land low,
    a sunken plain, a hard flat,
         bald is your stoney valley.
You shall be flooded.

You are but madmen,
     your fame and riches
          hang 'round your necks.
You shall be plundered.

You who fear no harm,
     your ramparts so high,
          your city walls so thick,
You shall be breached.

You trust in your works,
     you praise your hands,
          towering buildings testify.
You shall be destroyed.

You have led a life of ease,
     bottle upon bottle consumed,
          spirits upon spirits reign.
Your vessels shall be broken.

You are exceedingly proud,
     long sinless self-proclaimed,
          scorn for the lowly renowned.
You shall stumble and fall.

Your fields more than plentiful,
     your fruit an ample rare vintage,
          your winepresses always so full.
Your vineyards will wither.

You worship other gods,
    sacrifices offered on high,
         burning incense fills the air.
You shall wail in vain.

Your hair is your glory,
     long blowing in the air,
          hours combing 'n stroking
You shall be clipped bald.

You are free as birds,
     nesting where you like,
          crags of safety behold,
You will be taken captive.

You wear the robes of royalty,
     regal crowns upon your head,
          feet shod to gather no grime.
You will be stripped bare.

Your children numerous as sand,
      your quiver can stand no more,
           they are like a victor’s garland.
Your children will be fatherless.

The time has come indeed
     for those I made to be mine,
          who would not so much incline,
               says the Lord of Lords, God:
                    you shall not unpunished go.

I will make you small among all nations.
I will make you a stench on a thousand
I will make you a burial ground where
     only dregs are piled.*

Jeremiah 25:15-17
Jeremiah 46-51

*may God prepare hearts to respond in
fearful humility, having seen the demise
of the rebellious that went before them

by J Alan R
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