Tisha Be’av

| Tishah Be'av Posted On Jan 1, 1980 | Haftarah Reading

This translation was taken from the JPS Tanakh

Morning: Jeremiah 8:13-9:23

Chapter 8

13I will make an end of them
—declares the Lord:
No grapes left on the vine,
No figs on the fig tree,
The leaves all withered;
Whatever I have given them is gone.

14Why are we sitting by?
Let us gather into the fortified cities
And meet our doom there.
For the Lord our God has doomed us,
He has made us drink a bitter draft,
Because we sinned against the Lord.

15We hoped for good fortune, but no happiness came;
For a time of relief—instead there is terror!

16The snorting of their horses was heard from Dan;
At the loud neighing of their steeds
The whole land quaked.
They came and devoured the land and what was in it,
The towns and those who dwelt in them.

17Lo, I will send serpents against you,
Adders that cannot be charmed,
And they shall bite you
—declares the Lord.

18When in grief I would seek comfort,
My heart is sick within me.

19“Is not the Lord in Zion?
Is not her King within her?
Why then did they anger Me with their images,
With alien futilities?”
Hark! The outcry of my poor people
From the land far and wide:

20“Harvest is past,
Summer is gone,
But we have not been saved.”

21Because my people is shattered I am shattered;
I am dejected, seized by desolation.

22Is there no balm in Gilead?
Can no physician be found?
Why has healing not yet
Come to my poor people?

23Oh, that my head were water,
My eyes a fount of tears!
Then would I weep day and night
For the slain of my poor people.

Chapter 9

1Oh, to be in the desert,
At an encampment for wayfarers!
Oh, to leave my people,
To go away from them—
For they are all adulterers,
A band of rogues.

2They bend their tongues like bows;
They are valorous in the land
For treachery, not for honesty;
They advance from evil to evil.
And they do not heed Me
—declares the Lord.

3Beware, every man of his friend!
Trust not even a brother!
For every brother takes advantage,
Every friend is base in his dealings.

4One man cheats the other,
They will not speak truth;
They have trained their tongues to speak falsely;
They wear themselves out working iniquity.

5You dwell in the midst of deceit.
In their deceit, they refuse to heed Me
—declares the Lord.

6Assuredly, thus said the Lord of Hosts:
Lo, I shall smelt and assay them—
For what else can I do because of My poor people?

7Their tongue is a sharpened arrow,
They use their mouths to deceive.
One speaks to his fellow in friendship,
But lays an ambush for him in his heart.

8Shall I not punish them for such deeds?
—says the Lord—
Shall I not bring retribution
On such a nation as this?

9For the mountains I take up weeping and wailing,
For the pastures in the wilderness, a dirge.
They are laid waste; no man passes through,
And no sound of cattle is heard.
Birds of the sky and beasts as well
Have fled and are gone.

10I will turn Jerusalem into rubble,
Into dens for jackals;
And I will make the towns of Judah
A desolation without inhabitants.

11What man is so wise
That he understands this?
To whom has the Lord’s mouth spoken,
So that he can explain it:
Why is the land in ruins,
Laid waste like a wilderness,
With none passing through?

12The Lord replied: Because they forsook the Teaching I had set before them. They did not obey Me and they did not follow it, 13but followed their own willful heart and followed the Baalim, as their fathers had taught them. 14Assuredly, thus said the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel: I am going to feed that people wormwood and make them drink a bitter draft. 15I will scatter them among nations which they and their fathers never knew; and I will dispatch the sword after them until I have consumed them.

16Thus said the Lord of Hosts:
Summon the dirge-singers, let them come;

17Send for the skilled women, let them come.
Let them quickly start a wailing for us,
That our eyes may run with tears,
Our pupils flow with water.

18For the sound of wailing
Is heard from Zion:
How we are despoiled!
How greatly we are shamed!
Ah, we must leave our land,
Abandon our dwellings!

19Hear, O women, the word of the Lord,
Let your ears receive the word of His mouth,
And teach your daughters wailing,
And one another lamentation.

20For death has climbed through our windows,
Has entered our fortresses,
To cut off babes from the streets,
Young men from the squares.

21Speak thus—says the Lord:
The carcasses of men shall lie
Like dung upon the fields,
Like sheaves behind the reaper,
With none to pick them up.

22Thus said the Lord:
Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom;
Let not the strong man glory in his strength;
Let not the rich man glory in his riches.

23But only in this should one glory:
In his earnest devotion to Me.
For I the Lord act with kindness,
Justice, and equity in the world;
For in these I delight
—declares the Lord.

Afternoon: Isaiah 55:6-56:8

Chapter 55

6Seek the Lord while He can be found,
Call to Him while He is near.

7Let the wicked give up his ways,
The sinful man his plans;
Let him turn back to the Lord,
And He will pardon him;
To our God,
For he freely forgives.

8For My plans are not your plans,
Nor are My ways your ways
—declares the Lord.

9But as the heavens are high above the earth,
So are My ways high above your ways
And My plans above your plans.

10For as the rain or snow drops from heaven
And returns not there,
But soaks the earth
And makes it bring forth vegetation,
Yielding seed for sowing and bread for eating,

11So is the word that issues from My mouth:
It does not come back to Me unfulfilled,
But performs what I purpose,
Achieves what I sent it to do.

12Yea, you shall leave in joy and be led home secure.
Before you, mount and hill shall shout aloud,
And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.

13Instead of the brier, a cypress shall rise;
Instead of the nettle, a myrtle shall rise.
These shall stand as a testimony to the Lord,
As an everlasting sign that shall not perish.

Chapter 56

1Thus said the Lord:
Observe what is right and do what is just;
For soon My salvation shall come,
And my deliverance be revealed.

2Happy is the man who does this,
The man who holds fast to it:
Who keeps the sabbath and does not profane it,
And stays his hand from doing any evil.

3Let not the foreigner say,
Who has attached himself to the Lord,
“The Lord will keep me apart from His people”;
And let not the eunuch say,
“I am a withered tree.”

4For thus said the Lord:
“As for the eunuchs who keep My sabbaths,
Who have chosen what I desire
And hold fast to My covenant—

5I will give them, in My House
And within My walls,
A monument and a name
Better than sons or daughters.
I will give them an everlasting name
Which shall not perish.

6As for the foreigners
Who attach themselves to the Lord,
To minister to Him,
And to love the name of the Lord,
To be His servants—
All who keep the sabbath and do not profane it,
And who hold fast to My covenant—

7I will bring them to My sacred mount
And let them rejoice in My house of prayer.
Their burnt offerings and sacrifices
Shall be welcome on My altar;
For My House shall be called
A house of prayer for all peoples.”

8Thus declares the Lord God,
Who gathers the dispersed of Israel:
“I will gather still more to those already gathered.”

Taken from Tanakh, The Holy Scriptures, (Philadelphia, Jerusalem: Jewish Publication Society) 1985.
Used by permission of The Jewish Publication Society. Copyright © 1962, 1992
Third Edition by the Jewish Publication Society.
No part of this text can be reproduced or forwarded without written permission.
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