Prophecy against Ammon
49 Concerning the [a]sons (descendants) of Ammon.
Thus says the Lord:
“Does Israel have no sons [to reclaim Gad from the Ammonites]?
Has he no heir?
Why then has [b]Malcam taken possession of Gad
And [why do] his people live in the cities [of Gad]?
“Therefore behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord,
“When I will cause an alarm of war to be heard
Against Rabbah of the Ammonites;
And it [along with the high ground on which it stands] will become a desolate heap,
And its villages will be set on fire.
Then will Israel take possession of his possessors,”
Says the Lord.(A)
“Wail, O [c]Heshbon, for Ai [in Ammon] has been destroyed!
Cry out, O daughters of Rabbah!
Wrap yourselves with sackcloth and lament (cry out in grief),
And rush back and forth inside the enclosures;
For Malcam [your powerless god] will go into exile
Together with his priests and his princes.
“Why do you boast of your valleys?
Your valley is flowing away,
[O Ammon] rebellious and faithless daughter
Who trusts in her treasures, saying,
‘Who will come against me?’
“Behold, I am going to bring terror on you,”
Says the Lord God of hosts,
“From all who are around you;
And each of you will be driven out headlong,
And there will be no one to gather the fugitives together.
“But [d]afterward I will reverse
The captivity of the children of Ammon and restore their fortunes,”
Says the Lord.
Prophecy against Edom
Thus says the Lord of hosts,
“Is there no longer any wisdom in [e]Teman?
Has good counsel vanished from the intelligent and prudent?
Has their wisdom decayed?(B)
“Flee, turn back, dwell in the depths [of the desert to escape the judgment of Edom],
O inhabitants of [f]Dedan,
For I will bring the destruction of [g]Esau (Edom) upon him
When I inspect and punish him.
“If grape gatherers came to you,
Would they not leave some ungleaned grapes [on the vines]?
If thieves came by night,
Would they not destroy [only] what is enough [for them]?
“But I have stripped Esau (Edom) bare;
I have uncovered his hiding places
And he cannot hide himself.
His descendants have been destroyed along with his brothers (relatives) and his neighbors;
And he is no more.
“Leave your orphans behind; I will [do what is needed to] keep them alive.
And let [those who are] your widows trust and confide in Me.”
12 For thus says the Lord, “Behold, those (Israel) who were not sentenced to drink the cup [of wrath] shall certainly drink it, and are you to remain unpunished? You will not be acquitted and go unpunished, but you will certainly drink [from the cup of wrath and judgment].(C) 13 For I have sworn [an oath] by Myself,” says the Lord, “that [h]Bozrah will become an object of horror, a reproach, a ruin, and a curse; and all its cities will become [i]perpetual ruins.”
I have heard a report from the Lord,
And a messenger has been sent to the nations, saying,
“Gather together and come against her,
And rise up for the battle.”
“For behold, [Edom] I have made you small among the nations
And despised among men.(D)
“As for Your terror,
The pride and arrogance of your heart have deceived you,
O you who live in the clefts of the rock (Sela also called [j]Petra),
Who hold and occupy the height of the hill.
Though you make your nest as high as the eagle’s,
I will bring you down from there,” says the Lord.
17 “Edom will become an object of horror; everyone who goes by it will be astonished and shall hiss [scornfully] at all its plagues and disasters. 18 As [it was] in the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah with their neighboring cities,” says the Lord, “no man will live there, nor will a son of man dwell in it. 19 See, one will come like a lion from the thicket of the Jordan against the enduring habitation [of Edom] and its watered pastures; for in an instant I will make [k]him (Edom) run from his land. I will appoint over him the one whom I choose. For who is like Me, and who will summon Me [into court] and prosecute Me [for this]? Who is the [earthly] shepherd who can stand [defiantly] before Me?”
20 Therefore hear the plan of the Lord which He has devised against Edom, and [hear] what He has purposed against the inhabitants of Teman: surely they will be dragged away, even the little ones of the flock; surely He will make their dwelling place desolate because of them. 21 The earth has quaked at the noise of their downfall. There is an outcry! The sound of its noise has been heard at the Red Sea. 22 Behold, He will mount up and fly swiftly like an eagle and spread His wings against [the city of] Bozrah; and in that day the heart of the mighty warriors of Edom will be like the heart of a woman in childbirth.(E)
Prophecy against Damascus
Concerning Damascus [in Syria].
“Hamath and Arpad are perplexed and shamed,
For they have heard bad news;
They are disheartened;
Troubled and anxious like a [storm-tossed] sea
Which cannot be calmed.
“Damascus has become helpless;
She has turned away to flee,
Terror (panic) has seized her;
Anguish and distress have gripped her
Like a woman in childbirth.
“Why has the renowned city not been deserted,
The city of My joy!
“Therefore, her young men will fall in her streets,
And all her men of war will be destroyed in that day,” says the Lord of hosts.(F)
“I will set fire to the wall of Damascus,
And it will consume the palaces of [l]Ben-hadad.”
Prophecy against Kedar and Hazor
“Arise, go up against Kedar
And destroy the men of the east.
“They (the Babylonians) will take away their tents and their flocks;
They will carry off for themselves
Their tent curtains, all their goods and their camels,
And they will call out to one another, ‘Terror on every side!’(G)
“Flee, run far away! Dwell in the depths [of the desert],
O inhabitants of Hazor,” says the Lord,
“For Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon has planned a course of action against you
And devised a scheme against you.
“Arise [Nebuchadnezzar], go up against a nation which is at ease,
Which lives securely,” says the Lord,
“A nation which has neither gates nor bars;
They dwell apart and alone.
“Their camels will become plunder,
And their herds of cattle a spoil;
And I will scatter to all the [four] winds those who cut the corners of their hair [as evidence of their idolatry],
And I will bring their disaster from every side,” says the Lord.(H)
“Hazor will become a haunt and dwelling place of jackals,
A desolation forever;
No one will live there,
Nor will a son of man reside in it.”
Prophecy against Elam
34 The word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet concerning [o]Elam, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, saying:
“Thus says the Lord of hosts,
‘Behold (listen carefully), I am going to break the bow of Elam,
The finest [weapon] of their strength.
‘And I will bring upon Elam the four winds
From the four corners of heaven;
And I will scatter them toward all those winds,
And there will be no nation
To which the outcasts of Elam will not go.
‘So I will cause Elam to be shattered (dismayed) before their enemies
And before those who seek their lives;
And I will bring disaster on them,
Even My fierce anger,’ says the Lord.
‘And I will send the sword after them
Until I have consumed them.
‘Then I will set My throne [of judgment] in [p]Elam
And I will destroy from there the king and princes,’
Says the Lord.(I)
‘But it will be in the last days (the end of days)
That I will reverse the captivity and restore the fortunes of Elam,’”
Says the Lord.
- Jeremiah 49:1 When the tribes of the Northern Kingdom were taken captive in 734-732 b.c., the Ammonites, a nomadic, warlike people descended from Lot through his younger daughter, moved into the territory of the tribe of Gad east of the Jordan.
- Jeremiah 49:1 Malcam or Milcom (1 Kin 11:5, 33; Zeph 1:5) was the national god of the Ammonites. Other variant forms of this name include Milcham and Malcham.
- Jeremiah 49:3 Originally a Moabite town, Heshbon was located south of Ammon.
- Jeremiah 49:6 As complete and continuous as the desolation of Moab and Ammon was for so many centuries, yet God is keeping His word for their restoration “in the latter days” (48:47) in a remarkable manner. For instance, Amman, the capital of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan (formerly called Transjordania, and in ancient times, Rabbath of Ammon or the City of Waters), was a mere village in 1900, but by the year 2000 it was a city of almost 2,000,000 inhabitants.
- Jeremiah 49:7 Teman was an important stronghold located in central Edom. It was about three miles from Sela (Petra). Teman was also used as a generic name to represent all of Edom.
- Jeremiah 49:8 A tribal settlement and trading center on Edom’s southeastern border.
- Jeremiah 49:8 The Edomites were the descendants of Esau, Jacob’s elder twin brother. Because of his godlessness he and his descendants were cursed.
- Jeremiah 49:13 Located in northern Edom, between Petra and the Dead Sea, the area was famous for its dyed garments.
- Jeremiah 49:13 How except by divine inspiration could the prophets have foretold that Edom’s desolation would be perpetual? After 2,500 years the statement is so literally true that in the land of Edom, where millions once lived, there are only a few people barely existing, and the land is in ruins. For there was no prophecy that Edom would recover “in the latter days” (48:47), as was predicted for Moab and Ammon, but Edom’s desolation was to be lasting. The short book of Obadiah presents an interesting further clarification of God’s reason for this exceptional treatment of Edom. It was the outcome of a deception and a family quarrel between two brothers, Jacob and Esau, which erupted into acts of violence and which continued from Genesis to the Gospels (see Gen 27).
- Jeremiah 49:16 Petra, once an important Roman province in Edom, was lost for many centuries but rediscovered in 1812. On the height above its ruins is the great high place. Other evidence of idolatry has been found on neighboring heights.
- Jeremiah 49:19 In about 550 b.c. the Nabataeans completely overthrew the Edomites and drove them from their land. They took control of the great Middle Eastern trade routes and made Petra (Sela) their capital city.
- Jeremiah 49:27 Ben-hadad (“son of Hadad,” a pagan god) was the title given to the early Syrian kings who ruled in Damascus.
- Jeremiah 49:28 A tribe of nomadic Arabs descended from Ishmael’s second son, Kedar (Gen 25:13).
- Jeremiah 49:28 This Hazor is not to be confused with three others mentioned elsewhere (Josh 11:1; 15:23; Neh 11:33). It was a region in the Arabian Desert east of Palestine. Jeremiah’s prophecy concerning it was literally fulfilled. Nebuchadnezzar conquered Arabia, according to historians, and Hazor’s exact situation is long since unknown. Hazor is also known as that part of the Arab nation which used fixed dwellings in unwalled towns, in contrast to nomadic Arabs.
- Jeremiah 49:34 Elam was located in what is now southwestern Iran (Khuzistan); however, no modern descendants remain. Susa (Heb Shushan), the ancient capital, was named for the gorgeous lilies that grew in the area. East of Babylonia, Elam was on the northern shore of the Persian Gulf in the lower Tigris Valley. After a long period of subjugation to foreign powers, it joined with Media, its northern neighbor, and ultimately captured Babylon (Is 21:2, 9). Elam became a province of the Persian Empire. Elamites settled as colonists in Samaria long before the return of the Jews from Babylon, and they joined with others in attempting to prevent the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the temple (Ezra 4:9). There were also Elamites present on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:9), but they became extinct in the eleventh century. Thus this prophecy of that nation’s destruction is long since fulfilled, with the restoration of Elam’s fortunes predicted in v 39.
- Jeremiah 49:38 Susa (Heb Shushan), Elam’s capital, was the winter home of the Persian kings. During an excavation in 1901, the Code of Hammurabi was discovered among its ruins. Daniel’s vision of the ram and the goat was set in the great citadel of Susa (Dan 8:2).