46 The following messages were given to Jeremiah the prophet from the Lord concerning foreign nations.
2 This message concerning Egypt was given in the fourth year of the reign of Jehoiakim son of Josiah, the king of Judah, on the occasion of the battle of Carchemish[a] when Pharaoh Neco, king of Egypt, and his army were defeated beside the Euphrates River by King Nebuchadnezzar[b] of Babylon.
3 “Prepare your shields,
and advance into battle!
4 Harness the horses,
and mount the stallions.
Take your positions.
Put on your helmets.
Sharpen your spears,
and prepare your armor.
5 But what do I see?
The Egyptian army flees in terror.
The bravest of its fighting men run
without a backward glance.
They are terrorized at every turn,”
says the Lord.
6 “The swiftest runners cannot flee;
the mightiest warriors cannot escape.
By the Euphrates River to the north,
they stumble and fall.
7 “Who is this, rising like the Nile at floodtime,
overflowing all the land?
8 It is the Egyptian army,
overflowing all the land,
boasting that it will cover the earth like a flood,
destroying cities and their people.
9 Charge, you horses and chariots;
attack, you mighty warriors of Egypt!
Come, all you allies from Ethiopia, Libya, and Lydia[c]
who are skilled with the shield and bow!
10 For this is the day of the Lord, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies,
a day of vengeance on his enemies.
The sword will devour until it is satisfied,
yes, until it is drunk with your blood!
The Lord, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, will receive a sacrifice today
in the north country beside the Euphrates River.
11 “Go up to Gilead to get medicine,
O virgin daughter of Egypt!
But your many treatments
will bring you no healing.
12 The nations have heard of your shame.
The earth is filled with your cries of despair.
Your mightiest warriors will run into each other
and fall down together.”
13 Then the Lord gave the prophet Jeremiah this message about King Nebuchadnezzar’s plans to attack Egypt.
14 “Shout it out in Egypt!
Publish it in the cities of Migdol, Memphis,[d] and Tahpanhes!
Mobilize for battle,
for the sword will devour everyone around you.
15 Why have your warriors fallen?
They cannot stand, for the Lord has knocked them down.
16 They stumble and fall over each other
and say among themselves,
‘Come, let’s go back to our people,
to the land of our birth.
Let’s get away from the sword of the enemy!’
17 There they will say,
‘Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, is a loudmouth
who missed his opportunity!’
18 “As surely as I live,” says the King,
whose name is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies,
“one is coming against Egypt
who is as tall as Mount Tabor,
or as Mount Carmel by the sea!
19 Pack up! Get ready to leave for exile,
you citizens of Egypt!
The city of Memphis will be destroyed,
without a single inhabitant.
20 Egypt is as sleek as a beautiful heifer,
but a horsefly from the north is on its way!
21 Egypt’s mercenaries have become like fattened calves.
They, too, will turn and run,
for it is a day of great disaster for Egypt,
a time of great punishment.
22 Egypt flees, silent as a serpent gliding away.
The invading army marches in;
they come against her with axes like woodsmen.
23 They will cut down her people like trees,” says the Lord,
“for they are more numerous than locusts.
24 Egypt will be humiliated;
she will be handed over to people from the north.”
25 The Lord of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: “I will punish Amon, the god of Thebes,[e] and all the other gods of Egypt. I will punish its rulers and Pharaoh, too, and all who trust in him. 26 I will hand them over to those who want them killed—to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon and his army. But afterward the land will recover from the ravages of war. I, the Lord, have spoken!
27 “But do not be afraid, Jacob, my servant;
do not be dismayed, Israel.
For I will bring you home again from distant lands,
and your children will return from their exile.
Israel[f] will return to a life of peace and quiet,
and no one will terrorize them.
28 Do not be afraid, Jacob, my servant,
for I am with you,” says the Lord.
“I will completely destroy the nations to which I have exiled you,
but I will not completely destroy you.
I will discipline you, but with justice;
I cannot let you go unpunished.”
47 This is the Lord’s message to the prophet Jeremiah concerning the Philistines of Gaza, before it was captured by the Egyptian army. 2 This is what the Lord says:
“A flood is coming from the north
to overflow the land.
It will destroy the land and everything in it—
cities and people alike.
People will scream in terror,
and everyone in the land will wail.
3 Hear the clatter of stallions’ hooves
and the rumble of wheels as the chariots rush by.
Terrified fathers run madly,
without a backward glance at their helpless children.
4 “The time has come for the Philistines to be destroyed,
along with their allies from Tyre and Sidon.
Yes, the Lord is destroying the remnant of the Philistines,
those colonists from the island of Crete.[g]
5 Gaza will be humiliated, its head shaved bald;
Ashkelon will lie silent.
You remnant from the Mediterranean coast,[h]
how long will you cut yourselves in mourning?
6 “Now, O sword of the Lord,
when will you be at rest again?
Go back into your sheath;
rest and be still.
7 “But how can it be still
when the Lord has sent it on a mission?
For the city of Ashkelon
and the people living along the sea
must be destroyed.”
48 This message was given concerning Moab. This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says:
“What sorrow awaits the city of Nebo;
it will soon lie in ruins.
The city of Kiriathaim will be humiliated and captured;
the fortress will be humiliated and broken down.
2 No one will ever brag about Moab again,
for in Heshbon there is a plot to destroy her.
‘Come,’ they say, ‘we will cut her off from being a nation.’
The town of Madmen,[i] too, will be silenced;
the sword will follow you there.
3 Listen to the cries from Horonaim,
cries of devastation and great destruction.
4 All Moab is destroyed.
Her little ones will cry out.[j]
5 Her refugees weep bitterly,
climbing the slope to Luhith.
They cry out in terror,
descending the slope to Horonaim.
6 Flee for your lives!
Hide[k] in the wilderness!
7 Because you have trusted in your wealth and skill,
you will be taken captive.
Your god Chemosh, with his priests and officials,
will be hauled off to distant lands!
8 “All the towns will be destroyed,
and no one will escape—
either on the plateaus or in the valleys,
for the Lord has spoken.
9 Oh, that Moab had wings
so she could fly away,[l]
for her towns will be left empty,
with no one living in them.
10 Cursed are those who refuse to do the Lord’s work,
who hold back their swords from shedding blood!
11 “From his earliest history, Moab has lived in peace,
never going into exile.
He is like wine that has been allowed to settle.
He has not been poured from flask to flask,
and he is now fragrant and smooth.
12 But the time is coming soon,” says the Lord,
“when I will send men to pour him from his jar.
They will pour him out,
then shatter the jar!
13 At last Moab will be ashamed of his idol Chemosh,
as the people of Israel were ashamed of their gold calf at Bethel.[m]
14 “You used to boast, ‘We are heroes,
mighty men of war.’
15 But now Moab and his towns will be destroyed.
His most promising youth are doomed to slaughter,”
says the King, whose name is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
16 “Destruction is coming fast for Moab;
calamity threatens ominously.
17 You friends of Moab,
weep for him and cry!
See how the strong scepter is broken,
how the beautiful staff is shattered!
18 “Come down from your glory
and sit in the dust, you people of Dibon,
for those who destroy Moab will shatter Dibon, too.
They will tear down all your towers.
19 You people of Aroer,
stand beside the road and watch.
Shout to those who flee from Moab,
‘What has happened there?’
20 “And the reply comes back,
‘Moab lies in ruins, disgraced;
weep and wail!
Tell it by the banks of the Arnon River:
Moab has been destroyed!’
21 Judgment has been poured out on the towns of the plateau—
on Holon and Jahaz[n] and Mephaath,
22 on Dibon and Nebo and Beth-diblathaim,
23 on Kiriathaim and Beth-gamul and Beth-meon,
24 on Kerioth and Bozrah—
all the towns of Moab, far and near.
25 “The strength of Moab has ended.
His arm has been broken,” says the Lord.
26 “Let him stagger and fall like a drunkard,
for he has rebelled against the Lord.
Moab will wallow in his own vomit,
ridiculed by all.
27 Did you not ridicule the people of Israel?
Were they caught in the company of thieves
that you should despise them as you do?
28 “You people of Moab,
flee from your towns and live in the caves.
Hide like doves that nest
in the clefts of the rocks.
29 We have all heard of the pride of Moab,
for his pride is very great.
We know of his lofty pride,
his arrogance, and his haughty heart.
30 I know about his insolence,”
says the Lord,
“but his boasts are empty—
as empty as his deeds.
31 So now I wail for Moab;
yes, I will mourn for Moab.
My heart is broken for the men of Kir-hareseth.[o]
32 “You people of Sibmah, rich in vineyards,
I will weep for you even more than I did for Jazer.
Your spreading vines once reached as far as the Dead Sea,[p]
but the destroyer has stripped you bare!
He has harvested your grapes and summer fruits.
33 Joy and gladness are gone from fruitful Moab.
The presses yield no wine.
No one treads the grapes with shouts of joy.
There is shouting, yes, but not of joy.
34 “Instead, their awful cries of terror can be heard from Heshbon clear across to Elealeh and Jahaz; from Zoar all the way to Horonaim and Eglath-shelishiyah. Even the waters of Nimrim are dried up now.
35 “I will put an end to Moab,” says the Lord, “for the people offer sacrifices at the pagan shrines and burn incense to their false gods. 36 My heart moans like a flute for Moab and Kir-hareseth, for all their wealth has disappeared. 37 The people shave their heads and beards in mourning. They slash their hands and put on clothes made of burlap. 38 There is crying and sorrow in every Moabite home and on every street. For I have smashed Moab like an old, unwanted jar. 39 How it is shattered! Hear the wailing! See the shame of Moab! It has become an object of ridicule, an example of ruin to all its neighbors.”
40 This is what the Lord says:
“Look! The enemy swoops down like an eagle,
spreading his wings over Moab.
41 Its cities will fall,
and its strongholds will be seized.
Even the mightiest warriors will be in anguish
like a woman in labor.
42 Moab will no longer be a nation,
for it has boasted against the Lord.
43 “Terror and traps and snares will be your lot,
O Moab,” says the Lord.
44 “Those who flee in terror will fall into a trap,
and those who escape the trap will step into a snare.
I will see to it that you do not get away,
for the time of your judgment has come,”
says the Lord.
45 “The people flee as far as Heshbon
but are unable to go on.
For a fire comes from Heshbon,
King Sihon’s ancient home,
to devour the entire land
with all its rebellious people.
46 “What sorrow awaits you, O people of Moab!
The people of the god Chemosh are destroyed!
Your sons and your daughters
have been taken away as captives.
47 But I will restore the fortunes of Moab
in days to come.
I, the Lord, have spoken!”
This is the end of Jeremiah’s prophecy concerning Moab.