This is a sermo which the Lorde commaunded Ieremie for to preache, saying:
Heare the wordes of this couenaunt and speake vnto the men of Iuda, and to all them that dwell at Hierusalem,
And say vnto them, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel: Cursed be euery one that is not obedient vnto the words of this couenaunt,
Whiche I commaunded vnto your fathers, what time as I brought them out of Egypt from the iron furnace, saying: Be obedient vnto my voyce, and do according to all that I commaunde you, so shall ye be my people, and I will be your God:
And wyll kepe my promise that I haue sworne vnto your fathers, [namelye] that I woulde geue them a lande whiche floweth with milke and honie, as ye see it is come to passe vnto this day.
Then aunswered I and sayde, Amen: let it be euen so Lorde as thou sayest.
Then the Lord sayd vnto me againe: Preache this in the cities of Iuda, and rounde about Hierusalem, & say: Heare the wordes of this couenaunt, and kepe them.
For I haue diligently exhorted your fathers, euer since the tyme that I brought them out of the lande of Egypt vnto this day, I gaue them warning be times, saying: hearken vnto my voyce.
Neuerthelesse, they would not obey me, nor encline their eares vnto me: but folowed the wicked imaginations of their owne heartes, and therefore I haue brought vpon them al the wordes of this couenaunt that I gaue them to kepe, which they [notwithstanding] haue not kept.
And the Lorde sayde vnto me: it is founde out that whole Israel and all these cities of Hierusalem are gone backe.
They haue turned them selues to the blasphemies of their forefathers, which had no lust to heare my wordes: Euen lykewyse haue these also folowed straunge gods, and worshipped them: The house of Israel and Iuda haue broken my couenaunt whiche I made with their fathers.
Therefore, thus saith the Lorde: beholde, I will send a plague vpon them, whiche they shall not be able to escape: and they shall crye vnto me, and I wyl not heare them.
Then shall the townes of Iuda, and the citizens of Hierusalem go and call vpon their gods vnto whom they made their oblations: but they shall not be able to helpe them in tyme of their trouble.
For as many cities as thou hast, O Iuda, so many gods hast thou had also: and loke howe many streetes there be in thee (O Hierusalem) so many shameful aulters haue ye set vp, aulters [I say] to offer vpon them vnto Baal.
Therfore pray not thou for this people, byd neither prayse nor prayer for them: for though they crye vnto me in their trouble, yet wil I not heare them.
What part hath my beloued in my house, seing he hath worked abhomination, seruing many gods?
The holy fleshe offeringes in the temple are gone from thee [O Iuda] and thou when thou hast done euyll, makest thy boast of it.
The Lord called thee a greene oliue tree, a faire one, a fruitefull one, a goodlye one: but with great clamour hath the enemie set fire vpon it, & the braunches of it are destroyed.
For the Lorde of hoastes that planted thee, hath deuised a plague for thee (O thou house of Israel and Iuda) for the euyll that ye haue done to prouoke hym to wrath, in that ye dyd seruice to Baal.
This (O Lorde) haue I learned of thee, and vnderstande it: for thou hast shewed me their imaginations.
But I am as a meeke lambe, an oxe that is caryed away to be slayne, not knowing that they had deuised suche a counsell against me [saying,] We wyll destroy his meate with wood, and driue him out of the lande of the liuing, that his name shall neuer be thought vpon.
Therfore I wyll beseche thee nowe (O Lorde of hoastes) thou righteous iudge, thou that tryest the raynes and the heartes, let me see thee auenged of them: for vnto thee haue I committed my cause.
The Lorde therfore spake thus of the citizens of Anathoth that sought to slay me, saying: Preache not vnto vs in the name of the Lorde, or els thou shalt dye of our handes:
Thus [I say] spake the Lorde of hoastes: Beholde, I will visit you, your young me shal perishe with the sworde, your sonnes and your daughters shall vtterly dye of hunger,
So that none shall remaine: for vpon the citizens of Anathoth wyll I bring a plague euen the yere of their visitation.