For the household gods 1 have spoken wickedness, the soothsayers have seen a lie, and as for the dreamers, they have disclosed emptiness and give comfort in vain. Therefore the people set out like sheep and become scattered because they have no shepherd. 2
I chose your ancestor 1 from all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to offer sacrifice on my altar, to burn incense, and to bear the ephod before me. I gave to your ancestor’s house all the fire offerings made by the Israelites.
On the fifteenth day of the eighth month (a date he had arbitrarily chosen) 1 Jeroboam 2 offered sacrifices on the altar he had made in Bethel. 3 He inaugurated a festival for the Israelites and went up to the altar to offer sacrifices.
They offer burnt sacrifices to the Lord every morning and every evening, along with fragrant incense. They arrange the Bread of the Presence on a ritually clean table and light the lamps on the gold lampstand every evening. Certainly 1 we are observing the Lord our God’s regulations, but you have rejected him.
For to the one who pleases him, 1 God gives wisdom, knowledge, and joy, but to the sinner, he gives the task of amassing 2 wealth 3 – only to give 4 it 5 to the one who pleases God. This 6 task of the wicked 7 is futile – like chasing the wind!
A man who is all alone with no companion, 1 he has no children nor siblings; 2 yet there is no end to all his toil, and he 3 is never satisfied with riches. He laments, 4 “For whom am I toiling and depriving myself 5 of pleasure?” 6 This also is futile and a burdensome task! 7
God gives a man riches, property, and wealth so that he lacks nothing that his heart 1 desires, 2 yet God does not enable 3 him to enjoy 4 the fruit of his labor 5 – instead, someone else 6 enjoys 7 it! 8 This is fruitless and a grave misfortune. 9
Therefore, as flaming fire 1 devours straw, and dry grass disintegrates in the flames, so their root will rot, and their flower will blow away like dust. 2 For they have rejected the law of the Lord who commands armies, they have spurned the commands 3 of the Holy One of Israel. 4
If you don’t inform me of the dream, there is only one thing that is going to happen to you. 1 For you have agreed among yourselves to report to me something false and deceitful 2 until such time as things might change. So tell me the dream, and I will have confidence 3 that you can disclose its interpretation.”
These men are 1 dangerous reefs 2 at your love feasts, 3 feasting without reverence, 4 feeding only themselves. 5 They are 6 waterless 7 clouds, carried along by the winds; autumn trees without fruit 8 – twice dead, 9 uprooted;