A Judgment on Babylon

21 A pronouncement(A) concerning the desert by the sea:(B)

Like storms that pass over the Negev,
it comes from the desert, from the land of terror.
A troubling vision is declared to me:
“The treacherous one acts treacherously,(C)
and the destroyer destroys.
Advance, Elam! Lay siege, you Medes!
I will put an end to all the groaning.”
Therefore I am[a] filled with anguish.
Pain grips me, like the pain of a woman in labor.(D)
I am too perplexed to hear,
too dismayed to see.
My heart staggers;
horror terrifies me.
He has turned my last glimmer of hope[b]
into sheer terror.(E)
Prepare a table,(F) and spread out a carpet!
Eat and drink!
Rise up, you princes, and oil the shields!
For the Lord has said to me,
“Go, post a lookout;
let him report what he sees.
When he sees riders—
pairs of horsemen,
riders on donkeys,
riders on camels—
he must pay close attention.”
Then the lookout[c] reported,
“Lord, I stand on the watchtower all day,(G)
and I stay at my post all night.
Look, riders come—
horsemen in pairs.”
And he answered, saying,
“Babylon has fallen,(H) has fallen.
All the images of her gods
have been shattered on the ground.”(I)
10 My people who have been crushed
on the threshing floor,(J)
I have declared to you
what I have heard from the Lord of Armies,
the God of Israel.

A Pronouncement against Dumah

11 A pronouncement(K) concerning Dumah:[d](L)

One calls to me from Seir,(M)
“Watchman, what is left of the night?
Watchman, what is left of the night?”
12 The watchman said,
“Morning has come, and also night.
If you want to ask, ask!
Come back again.”

A Pronouncement against Arabia

13 A pronouncement concerning Arabia:(N)

In the desert[e] brush
you will camp for the night,
you caravans of Dedanites.(O)
14 Bring water for the thirsty.
The inhabitants of the land of Tema(P)
meet[f] the refugees with food.
15 For they have fled from swords,
from the drawn sword,
from the bow that is strung,
and from the stress of battle.

16 For the Lord said this to me: “Within one year,(Q) as a hired worker counts years, all the glory of Kedar(R) will be gone. 17 The remaining Kedarite archers will be few in number.” For the Lord, the God of Israel, has spoken.

Footnotes

  1. 21:3 Lit my waist is, or my insides are
  2. 21:4 Lit my twilight
  3. 21:8 DSS, Syr; MT reads Then a lion
  4. 21:11 Some Hb mss, LXX read Edom
  5. 21:13 LXX, Syr, Tg, Vg read desert at evening
  6. 21:14 LXX, Syr, Tg, Vg read meet as a command

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