5:29 I will certainly punish them for doing such things!” says the Lord.
“I will certainly bring retribution on such a nation as this! 1
5:30 “Something horrible and shocking
is going on in the land of Judah:
5:31 The prophets prophesy lies.
The priests exercise power by their own authority. 2
And my people love to have it this way.
But they will not be able to help you when the time of judgment comes! 3
1 tn Heb “Should I not punish…? Should I not bring retribution…?” The rhetorical questions function as emphatic declarations.
sn These words are repeated from 5:9 to give a kind of refrain justifying again the necessity of punishment in the light of such sins.
2 tn Heb “they shall rule at their hands.” Since the word “hand” can be used figuratively for authority or mean “side” and the pronoun “them” can refer to the priests themselves or the prophets, the following translations have also been suggested: “the priests rule under their [the prophets’] directions,” or “the priests rule in league with them [the prophets].” From the rest of the book it would appear that the prophets did not exercise authority over the priests nor did they exercise the same authority over the people that the priests did. Hence it probably mean “by their own hand/power/authority.”
3 tn Heb “But what will you do at its end?” The rhetorical question implies a negative answer: “Nothing!”