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Jeremiah 49-50New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Judgment on the Ammonites

49 Concerning the Ammonites.

Thus says the Lord:

Has Israel no sons?
    Has he no heir?
Why then has Milcom dispossessed Gad,
    and his people settled in its towns?
Therefore, the time is surely coming,
    says the Lord,
when I will sound the battle alarm
    against Rabbah of the Ammonites;
it shall become a desolate mound,
    and its villages shall be burned with fire;
then Israel shall dispossess those who dispossessed him,
    says the Lord.

Wail, O Heshbon, for Ai is laid waste!
    Cry out, O daughters[a] of Rabbah!
Put on sackcloth,
    lament, and slash yourselves with whips![b]
For Milcom shall go into exile,
    with his priests and his attendants.
Why do you boast in your strength?
    Your strength is ebbing,
O faithless daughter.
    You trusted in your treasures, saying,
    “Who will attack me?”
I am going to bring terror upon you,
    says the Lord God of hosts,
    from all your neighbors,
and you will be scattered, each headlong,
    with no one to gather the fugitives.

But afterward I will restore the fortunes of the Ammonites, says the Lord.

Judgment on Edom

Concerning Edom.

Thus says the Lord of hosts:

Is there no longer wisdom in Teman?
    Has counsel perished from the prudent?
    Has their wisdom vanished?
Flee, turn back, get down low,
    inhabitants of Dedan!
For I will bring the calamity of Esau upon him,
    the time when I punish him.
If grape-gatherers came to you,
    would they not leave gleanings?
If thieves came by night,
    even they would pillage only what they wanted.
10 But as for me, I have stripped Esau bare,
    I have uncovered his hiding places,
    and he is not able to conceal himself.
His offspring are destroyed, his kinsfolk
    and his neighbors; and he is no more.
11 Leave your orphans, I will keep them alive;
    and let your widows trust in me.

12 For thus says the Lord: If those who do not deserve to drink the cup still have to drink it, shall you be the one to go unpunished? You shall not go unpunished; you must drink it. 13 For by myself I have sworn, says the Lord, that Bozrah shall become an object of horror and ridicule, a waste, and an object of cursing; and all her towns shall be perpetual wastes.

14 I have heard tidings from the Lord,
    and a messenger has been sent among the nations:
“Gather yourselves together and come against her,
    and rise up for battle!”
15 For I will make you least among the nations,
    despised by humankind.
16 The terror you inspire
    and the pride of your heart have deceived you,
you who live in the clefts of the rock,[c]
    who hold the height of the hill.
Although you make your nest as high as the eagle’s,
    from there I will bring you down,
says the Lord.

17 Edom shall become an object of horror; everyone who passes by it will be horrified and will hiss because of all its disasters. 18 As when Sodom and Gomorrah and their neighbors were overthrown, says the Lord, no one shall live there, nor shall anyone settle in it. 19 Like a lion coming up from the thickets of the Jordan against a perennial pasture, I will suddenly chase Edom[d] away from it; and I will appoint over it whomever I choose.[e] For who is like me? Who can summon me? Who is the shepherd who can stand before me? 20 Therefore hear the plan that the Lord has made against Edom and the purposes that he has formed against the inhabitants of Teman: Surely the little ones of the flock shall be dragged away; surely their fold shall be appalled at their fate. 21 At the sound of their fall the earth shall tremble; the sound of their cry shall be heard at the Red Sea.[f] 22 Look, he shall mount up and swoop down like an eagle, and spread his wings against Bozrah, and the heart of the warriors of Edom in that day shall be like the heart of a woman in labor.

Judgment on Damascus

23 Concerning Damascus.

Hamath and Arpad are confounded,
    for they have heard bad news;
they melt in fear, they are troubled like the sea[g]
    that cannot be quiet.
24 Damascus has become feeble, she turned to flee,
    and panic seized her;
anguish and sorrows have taken hold of her,
    as of a woman in labor.
25 How the famous city is forsaken,[h]
    the joyful town![i]
26 Therefore her young men shall fall in her squares,
    and all her soldiers shall be destroyed in that day,
says the Lord of hosts.
27 And I will kindle a fire at the wall of Damascus,
    and it shall devour the strongholds of Ben-hadad.

Judgment on Kedar and Hazor

28 Concerning Kedar and the kingdoms of Hazor that King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon defeated.

Thus says the Lord:
Rise up, advance against Kedar!
    Destroy the people of the east!
29 Take their tents and their flocks,
    their curtains and all their goods;
carry off their camels for yourselves,
    and a cry shall go up: “Terror is all around!”
30 Flee, wander far away, hide in deep places,
    O inhabitants of Hazor!
says the Lord.
For King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon
    has made a plan against you
    and formed a purpose against you.

31 Rise up, advance against a nation at ease,
    that lives secure,
says the Lord,
that has no gates or bars,
    that lives alone.
32 Their camels shall become booty,
    their herds of cattle a spoil.
I will scatter to every wind
    those who have shaven temples,
and I will bring calamity
    against them from every side,
says the Lord.
33 Hazor shall become a lair of jackals,
    an everlasting waste;
no one shall live there,
    nor shall anyone settle in it.

Judgment on Elam

34 The word of the Lord that came to the prophet Jeremiah concerning Elam, at the beginning of the reign of King Zedekiah of Judah.

35 Thus says the Lord of hosts: I am going to break the bow of Elam, the mainstay of their might; 36 and I will bring upon Elam the four winds from the four quarters of heaven; and I will scatter them to all these winds, and there shall be no nation to which the exiles from Elam shall not come. 37 I will terrify Elam before their enemies, and before those who seek their life; I will bring disaster upon them, my fierce anger, says the Lord. I will send the sword after them, until I have consumed them; 38 and I will set my throne in Elam, and destroy their king and officials, says the Lord.

39 But in the latter days I will restore the fortunes of Elam, says the Lord.

Judgment on Babylon

50 The word that the Lord spoke concerning Babylon, concerning the land of the Chaldeans, by the prophet Jeremiah:

Declare among the nations and proclaim,
    set up a banner and proclaim,
    do not conceal it, say:
Babylon is taken,
    Bel is put to shame,
    Merodach is dismayed.
Her images are put to shame,
    her idols are dismayed.

For out of the north a nation has come up against her; it shall make her land a desolation, and no one shall live in it; both human beings and animals shall flee away.

In those days and in that time, says the Lord, the people of Israel shall come, they and the people of Judah together; they shall come weeping as they seek the Lord their God. They shall ask the way to Zion, with faces turned toward it, and they shall come and join[j] themselves to the Lord by an everlasting covenant that will never be forgotten.

My people have been lost sheep; their shepherds have led them astray, turning them away on the mountains; from mountain to hill they have gone, they have forgotten their fold. All who found them have devoured them, and their enemies have said, “We are not guilty, because they have sinned against the Lord, the true pasture, the Lord, the hope of their ancestors.”

Flee from Babylon, and go out of the land of the Chaldeans, and be like male goats leading the flock. For I am going to stir up and bring against Babylon a company of great nations from the land of the north; and they shall array themselves against her; from there she shall be taken. Their arrows are like the arrows of a skilled warrior who does not return empty-handed. 10 Chaldea shall be plundered; all who plunder her shall be sated, says the Lord.

11 Though you rejoice, though you exult,
    O plunderers of my heritage,
though you frisk about like a heifer on the grass,
    and neigh like stallions,
12 your mother shall be utterly shamed,
    and she who bore you shall be disgraced.
Lo, she shall be the last of the nations,
    a wilderness, dry land, and a desert.
13 Because of the wrath of the Lord she shall not be inhabited,
    but shall be an utter desolation;
everyone who passes by Babylon shall be appalled
    and hiss because of all her wounds.
14 Take up your positions around Babylon,
    all you that bend the bow;
shoot at her, spare no arrows,
    for she has sinned against the Lord.
15 Raise a shout against her from all sides,
    “She has surrendered;
her bulwarks have fallen,
    her walls are thrown down.”
For this is the vengeance of the Lord:
    take vengeance on her,
    do to her as she has done.
16 Cut off from Babylon the sower,
    and the wielder of the sickle in time of harvest;
because of the destroying sword
    all of them shall return to their own people,
    and all of them shall flee to their own land.

17 Israel is a hunted sheep driven away by lions. First the king of Assyria devoured it, and now at the end King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon has gnawed its bones. 18 Therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: I am going to punish the king of Babylon and his land, as I punished the king of Assyria. 19 I will restore Israel to its pasture, and it shall feed on Carmel and in Bashan, and on the hills of Ephraim and in Gilead its hunger shall be satisfied. 20 In those days and at that time, says the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and none shall be found; for I will pardon the remnant that I have spared.

21 Go up to the land of Merathaim;[k]
    go up against her,
and attack the inhabitants of Pekod[l]
    and utterly destroy the last of them,[m]
says the Lord;
    do all that I have commanded you.
22 The noise of battle is in the land,
    and great destruction!
23 How the hammer of the whole earth
    is cut down and broken!
How Babylon has become
    a horror among the nations!
24 You set a snare for yourself and you were caught, O Babylon,
    but you did not know it;
you were discovered and seized,
    because you challenged the Lord.
25 The Lord has opened his armory,
    and brought out the weapons of his wrath,
for the Lord God of hosts has a task to do
    in the land of the Chaldeans.
26 Come against her from every quarter;
    open her granaries;
pile her up like heaps of grain, and destroy her utterly;
    let nothing be left of her.
27 Kill all her bulls,
    let them go down to the slaughter.
Alas for them, their day has come,
    the time of their punishment!

28 Listen! Fugitives and refugees from the land of Babylon are coming to declare in Zion the vengeance of the Lord our God, vengeance for his temple.

29 Summon archers against Babylon, all who bend the bow. Encamp all around her; let no one escape. Repay her according to her deeds; just as she has done, do to her—for she has arrogantly defied the Lord, the Holy One of Israel. 30 Therefore her young men shall fall in her squares, and all her soldiers shall be destroyed on that day, says the Lord.

31 I am against you, O arrogant one,
    says the Lord God of hosts;
for your day has come,
    the time when I will punish you.
32 The arrogant one shall stumble and fall,
    with no one to raise him up,
and I will kindle a fire in his cities,
    and it will devour everything around him.

33 Thus says the Lord of hosts: The people of Israel are oppressed, and so too are the people of Judah; all their captors have held them fast and refuse to let them go. 34 Their Redeemer is strong; the Lord of hosts is his name. He will surely plead their cause, that he may give rest to the earth, but unrest to the inhabitants of Babylon.

35 A sword against the Chaldeans, says the Lord,
    and against the inhabitants of Babylon,
    and against her officials and her sages!
36 A sword against the diviners,
    so that they may become fools!
A sword against her warriors,
    so that they may be destroyed!
37 A sword against her[n] horses and against her[o] chariots,
    and against all the foreign troops in her midst,
    so that they may become women!
A sword against all her treasures,
    that they may be plundered!
38 A drought[p] against her waters,
    that they may be dried up!
For it is a land of images,
    and they go mad over idols.

39 Therefore wild animals shall live with hyenas in Babylon,[q] and ostriches shall inhabit her; she shall never again be peopled, or inhabited for all generations. 40 As when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and their neighbors, says the Lord, so no one shall live there, nor shall anyone settle in her.

41 Look, a people is coming from the north;
    a mighty nation and many kings
    are stirring from the farthest parts of the earth.
42 They wield bow and spear,
    they are cruel and have no mercy.
The sound of them is like the roaring sea;
    they ride upon horses,
set in array as a warrior for battle,
    against you, O daughter Babylon!

43 The king of Babylon heard news of them,
    and his hands fell helpless;
anguish seized him,
    pain like that of a woman in labor.

44 Like a lion coming up from the thickets of the Jordan against a perennial pasture, I will suddenly chase them away from her; and I will appoint over her whomever I choose.[r] For who is like me? Who can summon me? Who is the shepherd who can stand before me? 45 Therefore hear the plan that the Lord has made against Babylon, and the purposes that he has formed against the land of the Chaldeans: Surely the little ones of the flock shall be dragged away; surely their[s] fold shall be appalled at their fate. 46 At the sound of the capture of Babylon the earth shall tremble, and her cry shall be heard among the nations.

Footnotes:

  1. Jeremiah 49:3 Or villages
  2. Jeremiah 49:3 Cn: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  3. Jeremiah 49:16 Or of Sela
  4. Jeremiah 49:19 Heb him
  5. Jeremiah 49:19 Or and I will single out the choicest of his rams: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  6. Jeremiah 49:21 Or Sea of Reeds
  7. Jeremiah 49:23 Cn: Heb there is trouble in the sea
  8. Jeremiah 49:25 Vg: Heb is not forsaken
  9. Jeremiah 49:25 Syr Vg Tg: Heb the town of my joy
  10. Jeremiah 50:5 Gk: Heb toward it. Come! They shall join
  11. Jeremiah 50:21 Or of Double Rebellion
  12. Jeremiah 50:21 Or of Punishment
  13. Jeremiah 50:21 Tg: Heb destroy after them
  14. Jeremiah 50:37 Cn: Heb his
  15. Jeremiah 50:37 Cn: Heb his
  16. Jeremiah 50:38 Another reading is A sword
  17. Jeremiah 50:39 Heb lacks in Babylon
  18. Jeremiah 50:44 Or and I will single out the choicest of her rams: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  19. Jeremiah 50:45 Syr Gk Tg Compare 49.20: Heb lacks their
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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