9:2 (9:1) I wish I had a lodging place in the desert
where I could spend some time like a weary traveler.
Then I would desert my people
and walk away from them
because they are all unfaithful to God,
a congregation of people that has been disloyal to him.
9:3 The Lord says,
“These people are like soldiers who have readied their bows.
Their tongues are always ready to shoot out lies.
They have become powerful in the land,
but they have not done so by honest means.
Indeed, they do one evil thing after another
and do not pay attention to me.
9:4 Everyone must be on his guard around his friends.
He must not even trust any of his relatives.
For every one of them will find some way to cheat him.
And all of his friends will tell lies about him.
9:5 One friend deceives another
and no one tells the truth.
These people have trained themselves to tell lies.
They do wrong and are unable to repent.
9:6 They do one act of violence after another,
and one deceitful thing after another.
They refuse to pay attention to me,”
says the Lord.
9:7 Therefore the Lord who rules over all says,
“I will now purify them in the fires of affliction and test them.
The wickedness of my dear people has left me no choice.
What else can I do?
9:8 Their tongues are like deadly arrows.
They are always telling lies.
Friendly words for their neighbors come from their mouths.
But their minds are thinking up ways to trap them.
9:9 I will certainly punish them for doing such things!” says the Lord.
“I will certainly bring retribution on such a nation as this!”