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Judgment on the Nations

34 Come near, nations, to hear;
    and peoples, listen attentively!
Let the earth hear, and that which fills it;
    the world and all its offspring.
For the anger of Yahweh is against all the nations,
    and his wrath is against all their armies;
he has put them under a ban,
    he has given them up for slaughter.
And their slain shall be cast out;
    as for[a] their corpses, their stench shall go up.
And the mountains shall melt with[b] their blood,
    and all the host of heaven shall rot.
And the skies shall roll up like a scroll,
    and all their host shall wither
like the withering of a leaf from a vine,
    or[c] like the withering from a fig tree.

When my sword is drenched in the heavens,

look! It will descend upon Edom,
    and upon the people of my ban, for judgment.

Yahweh has a sword;[d]

it is full of blood.
    It is covered with[e] fat,
with[f] the blood of lambs and goats,
    with[g] the fat of the kidneys of rams,
for Yahweh has a sacrifice[h] in Bozrah
    and a great slaughter in the land of Edom.
And wild oxen shall go down with them,
    and steers with strong bulls.
And their land shall be drenched with[i] blood,
    and their soil shall be fattened with[j] fat.
For Yahweh has a day of vengeance,[k]
    a year of retribution for the strife of Zion.
And its streams shall be changed to pitch and its soil to sulfur,
    and its land shall become like burning pitch.
10 Night and day it shall not be quenched;
    its smoke shall go up forever.
From generation to generation it shall be in ruins;
    forever and ever there will be no one who passes through her.
11 But[l] the large bird and the hedgehog shall take possession of it,
    and the owl and the raven shall live in it.
And he shall stretch the measuring line of confusion out over it,
    and the plumb line of emptiness.
12 Its nobles—but no kingdom is there—shall call,
    and all its princes shall be nothing.
13 And thorns shall go up her citadel fortress,
    weeds[m] and thistle plants[n] in her fortresses;
and it shall be the settlement of jackals,
    green grass for the daughters of an ostrich.
14 And desert creatures shall meet with hyenas,
    and a goat-demon shall call to his neighbor;
surely there Lilith[o] shall repose,
    and she shall find a resting place for herself.
15 There the owl shall nest and lay
    and hatch and care for her chicks in her shadow;
surely there the birds of prey shall be gathered,
    each one with her mate.

16 Seek from the book of Yahweh and read;[p]

none of these shall be missing;
    none shall miss her mate.
For my[q] mouth is the one that[r] has commanded,
    and his spirit is the one that[s] has gathered them.
17 And he is the one that[t] has cast the lot for them,
    and his hand has apportioned it to them with the measuring line;
they shall take possession of it forever,
    they shall live in it from generation to generation.[u]


  1. Isaiah 34:3 Or “and”
  2. Isaiah 34:3 Or “from”
  3. Isaiah 34:4 Or “and”
  4. Isaiah 34:6 Literally “A sword for Yahweh”
  5. Isaiah 34:6 Or “from”
  6. Isaiah 34:6 Or “from”
  7. Isaiah 34:6 Or “from”
  8. Isaiah 34:6 Literally “a sacrifice for Yahweh”
  9. Isaiah 34:7 Or “from”
  10. Isaiah 34:7 Or “from”
  11. Isaiah 34:8 Literally “a day of vengeance for Yahweh”
  12. Isaiah 34:11 Or “And”
  13. Isaiah 34:13 Hebrew “weed”
  14. Isaiah 34:13 Hebrew “thistle plant”
  15. Isaiah 34:14 Hebrew transliteration; possibly a proper name for a Mesopotamian night-demon
  16. Isaiah 34:16 Literally “call”
  17. Isaiah 34:16 The Dead Sea Scroll has “his”
  18. Isaiah 34:16 Literally “he”
  19. Isaiah 34:16 Literally “he”
  20. Isaiah 34:17 Literally “he”
  21. Isaiah 34:17 Literally “to generation and generation”

Judgment Against the Nations

34 Come near, you nations, and listen;(A)
    pay attention, you peoples!(B)
Let the earth(C) hear, and all that is in it,
    the world, and all that comes out of it!(D)
The Lord is angry with all nations;
    his wrath(E) is on all their armies.
He will totally destroy[a](F) them,
    he will give them over to slaughter.(G)
Their slain(H) will be thrown out,
    their dead bodies(I) will stink;(J)
    the mountains will be soaked with their blood.(K)
All the stars in the sky will be dissolved(L)
    and the heavens rolled up(M) like a scroll;
all the starry host will fall(N)
    like withered(O) leaves from the vine,
    like shriveled figs from the fig tree.

My sword(P) has drunk its fill in the heavens;
    see, it descends in judgment on Edom,(Q)
    the people I have totally destroyed.(R)
The sword(S) of the Lord is bathed in blood,
    it is covered with fat—
the blood of lambs and goats,
    fat from the kidneys of rams.
For the Lord has a sacrifice(T) in Bozrah(U)
    and a great slaughter(V) in the land of Edom.
And the wild oxen(W) will fall with them,
    the bull calves and the great bulls.(X)
Their land will be drenched with blood,(Y)
    and the dust will be soaked with fat.

For the Lord has a day(Z) of vengeance,(AA)
    a year of retribution,(AB) to uphold Zion’s cause.
Edom’s streams will be turned into pitch,
    her dust into burning sulfur;(AC)
    her land will become blazing pitch!
10 It will not be quenched(AD) night or day;
    its smoke will rise forever.(AE)
From generation to generation(AF) it will lie desolate;(AG)
    no one will ever pass through it again.
11 The desert owl[b](AH) and screech owl[c] will possess it;
    the great owl[d] and the raven(AI) will nest there.
God will stretch out over Edom(AJ)
    the measuring line of chaos(AK)
    and the plumb line(AL) of desolation.
12 Her nobles will have nothing there to be called a kingdom,
    all her princes(AM) will vanish(AN) away.
13 Thorns(AO) will overrun her citadels,
    nettles and brambles her strongholds.(AP)
She will become a haunt for jackals,(AQ)
    a home for owls.(AR)
14 Desert creatures(AS) will meet with hyenas,(AT)
    and wild goats will bleat to each other;
there the night creatures(AU) will also lie down
    and find for themselves places of rest.
15 The owl will nest there and lay eggs,
    she will hatch them, and care for her young
    under the shadow of her wings;(AV)
there also the falcons(AW) will gather,
    each with its mate.

16 Look in the scroll(AX) of the Lord and read:

None of these will be missing,(AY)
    not one will lack her mate.
For it is his mouth(AZ) that has given the order,(BA)
    and his Spirit will gather them together.
17 He allots their portions;(BB)
    his hand distributes them by measure.
They will possess it forever
    and dwell there from generation to generation.(BC)


  1. Isaiah 34:2 The Hebrew term refers to the irrevocable giving over of things or persons to the Lord, often by totally destroying them; also in verse 5.
  2. Isaiah 34:11 The precise identification of these birds is uncertain.
  3. Isaiah 34:11 The precise identification of these birds is uncertain.
  4. Isaiah 34:11 The precise identification of these birds is uncertain.

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