and my eyes were a fountain full of tears!
If they were, I could cry day and night
for those of my dear people 3 who have been killed.
“Take note of what I say. 6
Call for the women who mourn for the dead!
Summon those who are the most skilled at it!” 7
Let them wail loudly until tears stream from our own eyes
and our eyelids overflow with water.
9:19 For the sound of wailing is soon to be heard in Zion.
For our houses have been torn down
and we must leave our land.’” 11
1 sn Beginning with 9:1, the verse numbers through 9:26 in the English Bible differ from the verse numbers in the Hebrew text (BHS), with 9:1 ET = 8:23 HT, 9:2 ET = 9:1 HT, 9:3 ET = 9:2 HT, etc., through 9:26 ET = 9:25 HT. Beginning with 10:1 the verse numbers in the ET and HT are again the same.
2 tn Heb “I wish that my head were water.”
4 tn Heb “Yahweh of armies.”
sn For the significance of this title see the notes at 2:19 and 7:3.
5 tn Heb “Thus says Yahweh of armies.” However, without some addition it is not clear to whom the command is addressed. The words are supplied in the translation for clarity and to help resolve a rather confusing issue of who is speaking throughout vv. 16-21. As has been evident throughout the translation, the speaker is not always indicated. Sometimes it is not even clear who the speaker is. In general the translation and the notes have reflected the general consensus in identifying who it is. Here, however, there is a good deal of confusion about who is speaking in vv. 18, 20-21. The Greek translation has the
6 tn Heb “Consider!”
7 tn Heb “Call for the mourning women that they may come and send for the wise/skilled women that they may come.” The verbs here are masculine plural, addressed to the people.
8 tn The words “And I said, ‘Indeed” are not in the text. They have been supplied in the translation to try and help clarify who the speaker is who identifies with the lament of the people.
9 tn The words “They will wail” are not in the text. They are supplied in the translation to make clear that this is the wailing that will be heard.
sn The destruction is still in the future, but it is presented graphically as though it had already taken place.
10 tn Heb “How we are ruined!”
11 tn The order of these two lines has been reversed for English stylistic reasons. The text reads in Hebrew “because we have left our land because they have thrown down our dwellings.” The two clauses offer parallel reasons for the cries “How ruined we are! [How] we are greatly disgraced!” But the first line must contain a prophetic perfect (because the lament comes from Jerusalem) and the second a perfect referring to a destruction that is itself future. This seems the only way to render the verse that would not be misleading.