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The Catholic Study Bible A special version of the New American Bible, with a wealth of background information useful to Catholics.

Chapter 3

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Sufferings of the Prophet and His People

1I am a man who knows affliction* from the rod of his anger, f Jer 20, 18 . 2One whom he has led and forced to walk in darkness, not in the light; 3Against me alone he brings back his hand again and again all the day. 4He has worn away my flesh and my skin, he has broken my bones; g Jb 30, 30; Is 38, 13 . 5He has beset me round about with poverty and weariness; 6He has left me to dwell in the dark like those long dead. h Ps 143, 3 .

7He has hemmed me in with no escape and weighed me down with chains; 8Even when I cry out for help, he stops my prayer; i Ps 22, 2 . 9He has blocked my ways with fitted stones, and turned my paths aside.

10A lurking bear he has been to me, a lion in ambush! j Jb 10, 16; Hos 13, 8 . 11He deranged my ways, set me astray, left me desolate. k Lam 1, 13 . 12He bent his bow, and set me up as the target for his arrow. l Lam 2, 4; Jb 16, 12 .

13He pierces my sides with shafts from his quiver. m Jb 6, 4; Ps 38, 3 . 14I have become a laughingstock for all nations, their taunt all the day long; n Jb 30, 9; Ps 69, 13 . 15He has sated me with bitter food, made me drink my fill of wormwood. o Jer 9, 14; 23, 15 .

16He has broken my teeth with gravel, pressed my face in the dust; 17My soul is deprived of peace, I have forgotten what happiness is; 18I tell myself my future is lost, all that I hoped for from the LORD.

19The thought of my homeless poverty is wormwood and gall; 20Remembering it over and over leaves my soul downcast within me. 21But I will call this to mind, as my reason to have hope:

22The favors of the LORD are not exhausted, his mercies are not spent; p Neh 9, 31 . 23They are renewed each morning, so great is his faithfulness. 24My portion is the LORD, says my soul; therefore will I hope in him. q Pss 16, 5; 73, 26 .

25Good is the LORD to one who waits for him, to the soul that seeks him; r Ps 130, 6; Is 30, 18 . 26It is good to hope in silence for the saving help of the LORD. 27It is good for a man to bear the yoke* from his youth.

28Let him sit alone and in silence, when it is laid upon him. 29Let him put his mouth to the dust;* there may yet be hope. s Jb 42, 6 . 30Let him offer his cheek to be struck, let him be filled with disgrace. t Is 50, 6; Mt 5, 39 .

31For the Lord's rejection does not last forever; u Ps 103, 9 . 32Though he punishes, he takes pity, in the abundance of his mercies; v Is 54, 8f . 33He has no joy in afflicting or grieving the sons of men. w Heb 12, 10f .

34When anyone tramples underfoot all the prisoners in the land, 35When he distorts men's rights in the very sight of the Most High, 36When he presses a crooked claim, the Lord does not look on unconcerned.

37Who commands, so that it comes to pass, except the Lord ordains it; 38Except it proceeds from the mouth of the Most High, whether the thing be good or bad! x Is 45, 7 . 39Why should any living man complain, any mortal, in the face of his sins? y Prv 19, 3 .

40Let us search and examine our ways that we may return to the LORD! z Jl 2, 12f . 41Let us reach out our hearts toward God in heaven! 42We have sinned and rebelled; you have not forgiven us.

43You veiled yourself in wrath and pursued us, you slew us and took no pity; a Lam 2, 21 . 44You wrapped yourself in a cloud which prayer could not pierce. 45You have made us offscourings and refuse among the nations. b 1 Cor 4, 13 .

46All our enemies have opened their mouths against us; 47Terror and the pit have been our lot, desolation and destruction; c Is 24, 17; Jer 48, 43 . 48My eyes run with streams of water over the downfall of the daughter of my people. d Ps 119, 136 .

49My eyes flow without ceasing, there is no respite, 50Till the LORD from heaven looks down and sees. 51My eyes torment my soul at the sight of all the daughters of my city.

52Those who were my enemies without cause hunted me down like a bird; 53They struck me down alive in the pit, and sealed me in with a stone. e Jer 37, 16; 38, 6–9 . 54The waters flowed over my head, and I said, “I am lost!”

55I called upon your name, O LORD, f 55f: Ps 130, 1f . from the bottom of the pit; 56You heard me call, “Let not your ear be deaf to my cry for help!” 57You came to my aid when I called to you; you said, “Have no fear!”

58You defended me in mortal danger, you redeemed my life. 59You see, O LORD, how I am wronged; do me justice! g Ps 35, 23 . 60You see all their vindictiveness, all their plots against me.

61You hear their insults, O LORD, [all their plots against me], 62The whispered murmurings of my foes, against me all the day; 63Whether they sit or stand, see, I am their taunt song.

64Requite them as they deserve, O LORD, according to their deeds; 65Give them hardness of heart, as your curse upon them; h Jer 11, 20; 2 Tm 4, 14 . 66Pursue them in wrath and destroy them from under your heavens!

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