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29 (A)People of Philistia, the rod that beat you is broken, but you have no reason to be glad. When one snake dies, a worse one comes in its place. A snake's egg hatches a flying dragon. 30 The Lord will be a shepherd to the poor of his people and will let them live in safety. But he will send a terrible famine on you Philistines, and it will not leave any of you alive.

31 Howl and cry for help, all you Philistine cities! Be terrified, all of you! A cloud of dust is coming from the north—it is an army with no cowards in its ranks.

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The Lord's Message about Philistia

47 (A)Before the king of Egypt attacked Gaza, the Lord spoke to me about Philistia. He said:

“Look! Waters are rising in the north
    and will rush like a river in flood.
They will cover the land and everything on it,
    cities and the people who live there.
People will call out for help;
    everyone on earth will cry bitterly.
They will hear the hoofbeats of horses,
    the clatter of chariots,
    the rumble of wheels.
Parents will not turn back for their children;
    their hands will hang limp at their sides.
The time has come to destroy Philistia,
    to cut off from Tyre and Sidon
    all the help that remains.
I, the Lord, will destroy the Philistines,
    all who came from the shores of Crete.
Great sorrow has come to the people of Gaza,
    and Ashkelon's people are silent.
    How long will the rest of Philistia mourn?
You cry out, ‘Sword of the Lord!
    How long will you go on slashing?
Go back to your scabbard,
    stay there and rest!’
But how can it rest,
    when I have given it work to do?
I have commanded it to attack Ashkelon
    and the people who live on the coast.”

Prophecy against Philistia

15 (A)The Sovereign Lord said, “The Philistines have taken cruel revenge on their agelong enemies and destroyed them in their hate. 16 And so I am announcing that I will attack the Philistines and wipe them out. I will destroy everyone left living there on the Philistine Plain. 17 I will punish them severely and take full revenge on them. They will feel my anger. Then they will know that I am the Lord.”

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(A)“What are you trying to do to me, Tyre, Sidon, and all of Philistia? Are you trying to pay me back for something? If you are, I will quickly pay you back! You have taken my silver and gold and carried my rich treasures into your temples. You have taken the people of Judah and Jerusalem far from their own country and sold them to the Greeks. Now I am going to bring them out of the places to which you have sold them. I will do to you what you have done to them. I will let your sons and daughters be sold to the people of Judah; they will sell them to the far-off Sabeans. I, the Lord, have spoken.

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(A)The Lord says, “The people of Gaza have sinned again and again, and for this I will certainly punish them. They carried off a whole nation and sold them as slaves to the people of Edom. So I will send fire upon the city walls of Gaza and burn down its fortresses. I will remove the rulers of the cities of Ashdod and Ashkelon. I will punish the city of Ekron, and all the Philistines who are left will die.”

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(A)The city of Ashkelon will see this and be afraid. The city of Gaza will see it and suffer great pain. So will Ekron, and her hopes will be shattered. Gaza will lose her king, and Ashkelon will be left deserted. People of mixed race will live in Ashdod. The Lord says, “I will humble all these proud Philistines. They will no longer eat meat with blood in it, or other forbidden food. All the survivors will become part of my people and be like a clan in the tribe of Judah. Ekron will become part of my people, as the Jebusites[a] did.

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  1. Zechariah 9:7 The original inhabitants of Jerusalem, who became David's subjects after he captured the city.