A Prophecy Against Babylon

13 A prophecy(A) against Babylon(B) that Isaiah son of Amoz(C) saw:(D)

Raise a banner(E) on a bare hilltop,
    shout to them;
beckon to them
    to enter the gates(F) of the nobles.
I have commanded those I prepared for battle;
    I have summoned my warriors(G) to carry out my wrath(H)
    those who rejoice(I) in my triumph.

Listen, a noise on the mountains,
    like that of a great multitude!(J)
Listen, an uproar(K) among the kingdoms,
    like nations massing together!
The Lord Almighty(L) is mustering(M)
    an army for war.
They come from faraway lands,
    from the ends of the heavens(N)
the Lord and the weapons(O) of his wrath(P)
    to destroy(Q) the whole country.

Wail,(R) for the day(S) of the Lord is near;
    it will come like destruction(T) from the Almighty.[a](U)
Because of this, all hands will go limp,(V)
    every heart will melt with fear.(W)
Terror(X) will seize them,
    pain and anguish will grip(Y) them;
    they will writhe like a woman in labor.(Z)
They will look aghast at each other,
    their faces aflame.(AA)

See, the day(AB) of the Lord is coming
    —a cruel(AC) day, with wrath(AD) and fierce anger(AE)
to make the land desolate
    and destroy the sinners within it.
10 The stars of heaven and their constellations
    will not show their light.(AF)
The rising sun(AG) will be darkened(AH)
    and the moon will not give its light.(AI)
11 I will punish(AJ) the world for its evil,
    the wicked(AK) for their sins.
I will put an end to the arrogance of the haughty(AL)
    and will humble(AM) the pride of the ruthless.(AN)
12 I will make people(AO) scarcer than pure gold,
    more rare than the gold of Ophir.(AP)
13 Therefore I will make the heavens tremble;(AQ)
    and the earth will shake(AR) from its place
at the wrath(AS) of the Lord Almighty,
    in the day of his burning anger.(AT)

14 Like a hunted(AU) gazelle,
    like sheep without a shepherd,(AV)
they will all return to their own people,
    they will flee(AW) to their native land.(AX)
15 Whoever is captured will be thrust through;
    all who are caught will fall(AY) by the sword.(AZ)
16 Their infants(BA) will be dashed to pieces before their eyes;
    their houses will be looted and their wives violated.(BB)

17 See, I will stir up(BC) against them the Medes,(BD)
    who do not care for silver
    and have no delight in gold.(BE)
18 Their bows(BF) will strike down the young men;(BG)
    they will have no mercy(BH) on infants,
    nor will they look with compassion on children.(BI)
19 Babylon,(BJ) the jewel of kingdoms,(BK)
    the pride and glory(BL) of the Babylonians,[b]
will be overthrown(BM) by God
    like Sodom and Gomorrah.(BN)
20 She will never be inhabited(BO)
    or lived in through all generations;
there no nomads(BP) will pitch their tents,
    there no shepherds will rest their flocks.
21 But desert creatures(BQ) will lie there,
    jackals(BR) will fill her houses;
there the owls(BS) will dwell,
    and there the wild goats(BT) will leap about.
22 Hyenas(BU) will inhabit her strongholds,(BV)
    jackals(BW) her luxurious palaces.
Her time is at hand,(BX)
    and her days will not be prolonged.(BY)

14 The Lord will have compassion(BZ) on Jacob;
    once again he will choose(CA) Israel
    and will settle them in their own land.(CB)
Foreigners(CC) will join them
    and unite with the descendants of Jacob.
Nations will take them
    and bring(CD) them to their own place.
And Israel will take possession of the nations(CE)
    and make them male and female servants in the Lord’s land.
They will make captives(CF) of their captors
    and rule over their oppressors.(CG)

On the day the Lord gives you relief(CH) from your suffering and turmoil(CI) and from the harsh labor forced on you,(CJ) you will take up this taunt(CK) against the king of Babylon:(CL)

How the oppressor(CM) has come to an end!
    How his fury[c] has ended!
The Lord has broken the rod(CN) of the wicked,(CO)
    the scepter(CP) of the rulers,
which in anger struck down peoples(CQ)
    with unceasing blows,
and in fury subdued(CR) nations
    with relentless aggression.(CS)
All the lands are at rest and at peace;(CT)
    they break into singing.(CU)
Even the junipers(CV) and the cedars of Lebanon
    gloat over you and say,
“Now that you have been laid low,
    no one comes to cut us down.”(CW)

The realm of the dead(CX) below is all astir
    to meet you at your coming;
it rouses the spirits of the departed(CY) to greet you—
    all those who were leaders(CZ) in the world;
it makes them rise from their thrones—
    all those who were kings over the nations.(DA)
10 They will all respond,
    they will say to you,
“You also have become weak, as we are;
    you have become like us.”(DB)
11 All your pomp has been brought down to the grave,(DC)
    along with the noise of your harps;(DD)
maggots are spread out beneath you
    and worms(DE) cover you.(DF)

12 How you have fallen(DG) from heaven,
    morning star,(DH) son of the dawn!
You have been cast down to the earth,
    you who once laid low the nations!(DI)
13 You said in your heart,
    “I will ascend(DJ) to the heavens;
I will raise my throne(DK)
    above the stars of God;
I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly,(DL)
    on the utmost heights(DM) of Mount Zaphon.[d]
14 I will ascend above the tops of the clouds;(DN)
    I will make myself like the Most High.”(DO)
15 But you are brought down(DP) to the realm of the dead,(DQ)
    to the depths(DR) of the pit.(DS)

16 Those who see you stare at you,
    they ponder your fate:(DT)
“Is this the man who shook(DU) the earth
    and made kingdoms tremble,
17 the man who made the world a wilderness,(DV)
    who overthrew(DW) its cities
    and would not let his captives go home?”(DX)

18 All the kings of the nations lie in state,
    each in his own tomb.(DY)
19 But you are cast out(DZ) of your tomb
    like a rejected branch;
you are covered with the slain,(EA)
    with those pierced by the sword,(EB)
    those who descend to the stones of the pit.(EC)
Like a corpse trampled underfoot,
20     you will not join them in burial,(ED)
for you have destroyed your land
    and killed your people.

Let the offspring(EE) of the wicked(EF)
    never be mentioned(EG) again.
21 Prepare a place to slaughter his children(EH)
    for the sins of their ancestors;(EI)
they are not to rise to inherit the land
    and cover the earth with their cities.

22 “I will rise up(EJ) against them,”
    declares the Lord Almighty.
“I will wipe out Babylon’s name(EK) and survivors,
    her offspring and descendants,(EL)
declares the Lord.
23 “I will turn her into a place for owls(EM)
    and into swampland;
I will sweep her with the broom of destruction,(EN)
    declares the Lord Almighty.(EO)


  1. Isaiah 13:6 Hebrew Shaddai
  2. Isaiah 13:19 Or Chaldeans
  3. Isaiah 14:4 Dead Sea Scrolls, Septuagint and Syriac; the meaning of the word in the Masoretic Text is uncertain.
  4. Isaiah 14:13 Or of the north; Zaphon was the most sacred mountain of the Canaanites.

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