Message to Ethiopia

18 Woe, land of whirring wings
Which lies beyond the rivers of [a](A)Cush,
Which sends messengers by the sea,
Even in (B)papyrus vessels on the surface of the waters.
Go, swift messengers, to a nation [b](C)tall and smooth,
To a people (D)feared [c]far and wide,
A powerful and oppressive nation
Whose land the rivers divide.
(E)All you who inhabit the world, and live on earth,
As soon as a flag is raised on the mountains, (F)you will see it,
And as soon as the trumpet is blown, you will hear it.

For this is what the Lord has told me:

“I will quietly look [d]from My (G)dwelling place
Like dazzling heat in the [e](H)sunshine,
Like a cloud of (I)dew in the heat of harvest.”
For (J)before the harvest, as soon as the bud [f]blossoms
And the flower becomes a ripening grape,
He will cut off the shoots with pruning knives,
And remove and tear away the spreading branches.
They will be left together for mountain birds (K)of prey,
And for the animals of the earth;
And the birds of prey will spend the summer feeding on them,
And all the animals of the earth will spend harvest time on them.
At that time a gift of tribute will be brought to the Lord of armies
[g]From a (L)people [h]tall and smooth,
From a people feared [i]far and wide,
A powerful and oppressive nation,
Whose land the rivers divide—
To the (M)place of the name of the Lord of armies, to Mount Zion.


  1. Isaiah 18:1 Or Ethiopia
  2. Isaiah 18:2 Lit drawn out
  3. Isaiah 18:2 Lit from it and beyond
  4. Isaiah 18:4 Lit in
  5. Isaiah 18:4 Lit light
  6. Isaiah 18:5 Lit is finished
  7. Isaiah 18:7 Some ancient versions and DSS; MT implies Consisting of a people
  8. Isaiah 18:7 Lit drawn out
  9. Isaiah 18:7 Lit from it and beyond

so the (A)king of Assyria will lead away the captives of Egypt and the exiles of Cush, (B)young and old, naked and barefoot with buttocks uncovered, to the [a]shame of Egypt. Then they will be (C)terrified and ashamed because of Cush their hope and Egypt their (D)pride.

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  1. Isaiah 20:4 Lit nakedness

A sword will come upon Egypt,
And there will be trembling in [a]Cush;
When the slain fall in Egypt,
They will (A)take away her [b]wealth,
And her foundations will be torn down.

[c]Cush, Put, Lud, all [d](B)Arabia, [e]Libya and the [f]people of the land [g]that is in league will fall with them by the sword.”

‘This is what the Lord says:
“Indeed, those who support (C)Egypt will fall
And the pride of her power will come down;
From Migdol to Syene
They will fall within her by the sword,”
Declares the Lord God.
“They will be desolate
In the (D)midst of the desolated lands;
And her cities will be
In the midst of the devastated cities.
And they will (E)know that I am the Lord,
When I set a (F)fire in Egypt
And all her helpers are broken.

On that day (G)messengers will go out from Me in ships to frighten (H)carefree [h]Cush; and (I)trembling will come on them as on the day of Egypt; for behold, it is coming!”

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  1. Ezekiel 30:4 Or Ethiopia
  2. Ezekiel 30:4 Or multitude
  3. Ezekiel 30:5 Or Ethiopia
  4. Ezekiel 30:5 Or the mixed people
  5. Ezekiel 30:5 Or Cub
  6. Ezekiel 30:5 Lit sons
  7. Ezekiel 30:5 Lit of the covenant
  8. Ezekiel 30:9 Or Ethiopia

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