3-4 When God has given you time to recover from the abuse and trouble and harsh servitude that you had to endure, you can amuse yourselves by taking up this satire, a taunt against the king of Babylon:
4-6 Can you believe it? The tyrant is gone!
The tyranny is over!
God has broken the rule of the wicked,
the power of the bully-rulers
That crushed many people.
A relentless rain of cruel outrage
Established a violent rule of anger
rife with torture and persecution.
7-10 And now it’s over, the whole earth quietly at rest.
Burst into song! Make the rafters ring!
Ponderosa pine trees are happy,
giant Lebanon cedars are relieved, saying,
“Since you’ve been cut down,
there’s no one around to cut us down.”
And the underworld dead are all excited,
preparing to welcome you when you come.
Getting ready to greet you are the ghostly dead,
all the famous names of earth.
All the buried kings of the nations
will stand up on their thrones
With well-prepared speeches,
royal invitations to death:
“Now you are as nothing as we are!
Make yourselves at home with us dead folks!”