In the second Lamentation of Jeremiah we find him in inconsolable anguish. Jerusalem was under siege and the suffering of the people, for least to greatest, was profound. Jeremiah, the weeping prophet, could hardly cry enough for the suffering of the people. The great city was being destroyed. Even the littlest children in the streets and at their mothers’ breasts were dying for lack of food. Jeremiah cried for these helpless and innocent of victims of the great destruction. How did it come to this?
14Your prophets have seen for you false and foolish visions;
And they have not exposed your iniquity So as to restore you from captivity,
But they have seen for you false and misleading oracles.
Most of the prophets of Jeremiah’s time (Jeremiah himself being almost a singular exception) refused to do their job. They would not expose sin. This is the only work that would have saved the people from calamity, but they refused to live up to the demands of their profession. The Lord said, “[T]he prophets...prophesy falsely in My name...Is there anything in the hearts of the prophets who prophesy falsehood, even these prophets of the deception of their own heart?” (Jer. 23:25,26) And again, “Behold, I am against the prophets... [who] led My people astray by their falsehoods and reckless boasting; yet I did not send them or command them, nor do they furnish this people the slightest benefit,’ declares the LORD.” (Jer. 23:31,32)
So James warned, “Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we shall incur a stricter judgment.” (James 3:1)