1 Thus said the LORD to me, “Go and buy a linen waistcloth, and put it on your loins, and do not dip it in water.” 2 So I bought a waistcloth according to the word of the LORD, and put it on my loins. 3 And the word of the LORD came to me a second time, 4 “Take the waistcloth which you have bought, which is upon your loins, and arise, go to the Euphra’tes, and hide it there in a cleft of the rock.” 5 So I went, and hid it by the Euphra’tes, as the LORD commanded me. 6 And after many days the LORD said to me, “Arise, go to the Euphra’tes, and take from there the waistcloth which I commanded you to hide there.” 7 Then I went to the Euphra’tes, and dug, and I took the waistcloth from the place where I had hidden it. And behold, the waistcloth was spoiled; it was good for nothing. 8 Then the word of the LORD came to me: 9 “Thus says the LORD: Even so will I spoil the pride of Judah and the great pride of Jerusalem. 10 This evil people, who refuse to hear my words, who stubbornly follow their own heart and have gone after other gods to serve them and worship them, shall be like this waistcloth, which is good for nothing. 11 For as the waistcloth clings to the loins of a man, so I made the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah cling to me, says the LORD, that they might be for me a people, a name, a praise, and a glory, but they would not listen.
18 You were unmindful of the Rock that begot you, and you forgot the God who gave you birth. 19 “The LORD saw it, and spurned them, because of the provocation of his sons and his daughters. 20 And he said, `I will hide my face from them, I will see what their end will be, for they are a perverse generation, children in whom is no faithfulness. 21 They have stirred me to jealousy with what is no god; they have provoked me with their idols. So I will stir them to jealousy with those who are no people; I will provoke them with a foolish nation.
31 Another parable he put before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed which a man took and sowed in his field; 32 it is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is the greatest of shrubs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.” 33 He told them another parable. “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened.” 34 All this Jesus said to the crowds in parables; indeed he said nothing to them without a parable. 35 This was to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet: “I will open my mouth in parables, I will utter what has been hidden since the foundation of the world.”
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