Jeremiah 48
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The Judgment on Moab
(Isaiah 16:1-12; Zephaniah 2:8-11)

1Concerning Moab, this is what the LORD of Hosts, the God of Israel, says:

“Woe to Nebo,

for it will be devastated.

Kiriathaim will be captured and disgraced;

the fortress will be shattered and dismantled.

2There is no longer praise for Moab;

in Heshbona they devise evil against her:

‘Come, let us cut her off from nationhood.’

You too, O people of Madmen,b will be silenced;

the sword will pursue you.

3A voice cries out from Horonaim,

‘Devastation and great destruction!’

4Moab will be shattered;

her little ones will cry out.c

5For on the Ascent to Luhith

they weep bitterly as they go,

and on the descent to Horonaim

cries of distress resound over the destruction:

6‘Flee! Run for your lives!

Become like a juniper in the desert.d

7Because you trust in your works and treasures,

you too will be captured,

and Chemosh will go into exile

with his priests and officials.

8The destroyer will move against every city,

and not one town will escape.

The valley also will be ruined,

and the high plain will be destroyed,

as the LORD has said.

9Put salt on Moab,

for she will be laid waste;e

her cities will become desolate,

with no one to dwell in them.

10Cursed be the one who is negligent

in doing the work of the LORD,

and cursed is he who withholds

his sword from bloodshed.

11Moab has been at ease from youth,

settled like wine on its dregs;

he has not been poured from vessel to vessel

or gone into exile.

So his taste has remained the same,

and his aroma is unchanged.

12Therefore behold, the days are coming,

declares the LORD,

when I will send to him wanderers,

who will pour him out.

They will empty his vessels

and shatter his jars.

13Then Moab will be ashamed of Chemosh,

just as the house of Israel was ashamed

when they trusted in Bethel.

14How can you say, ‘We are warriors,

mighty men ready for battle’?

15Moab has been destroyed

and its towns invaded;

the best of its young men

have gone down in the slaughter,

declares the King

whose name is the LORD of Hosts.

16Moab’s calamity is at hand,

and his affliction is rushing swiftly.

17Mourn for him, all you who surround him,

everyone who knows his name;

tell how the mighty scepter is shattered—

the glorious staff!

18Come down from your glory; sit on parched ground,

O daughter dwelling in Dibon,

for the destroyer of Moab has come against you;

he has destroyed your fortresses.

19Stand by the road and watch,

O resident of Aroer!

Ask the man fleeing or the woman escaping,

‘What has happened?’

20Moab is put to shame, for it has been shattered.

Wail and cry out!

Declare by the Arnon

that Moab is destroyed.

21Judgment has come upon the high plain—

upon Holon, Jahzah, and Mephaath,

22upon Dibon, Nebo, and Beth-diblathaim,

23upon Kiriathaim, Beth-gamul, Beth-meon,

24upon Kerioth, Bozrah, and all the towns of Moab,

those far and near.

25The horn of Moab has been cut off;

and his arm is broken,

declares the LORD.

26Make him drunk,

because he has magnified himself against the LORD;

so Moab will wallow in his own vomit,

and he will also become a laughingstock.

27Was not Israel your object of ridicule?

Was he ever found among thieves?

For whenever you speak of him

you shake your head.”

28Abandon the towns and dwell among the rocks,

O residents of Moab!

Be like a dove

that nests at the mouth of a cave.

29We have heard of Moab’s pride,

his exceeding pride and conceit,

his proud arrogance and haughtiness of heart.

30I know his fury,

declares the LORD,

but it is futile.

His boasting is as empty as his deeds.

31Therefore I will wail for Moab; I will cry out for all of Moab;

I will moan for the men of Kir-heres.

32I will weep for you, O vine of Sibmah,

more than I weep for Jazer.

Your tendrils have extended to the sea;f

they reach even to Jazer.g

The destroyer has fallen

on your summer fruit and grape harvest.

33Joy and gladness are removed from the orchard

and from the fields of Moab.

I have stopped the flow of wine from the presses;

no one will tread with shouts of joy;

their shouts are not for joy.

34There is a cry from Heshbon to Elealeh;

they raise their voices to Jahaz,

from Zoar to Horonaim and Eglath-shelishiyah;

for even the waters of Nimrim have dried up.

35In Moab, declares the LORD,

I will bring an end

to those who make offerings on the high places

and burn incense to their gods.

36Therefore My heart laments for Moab like a flute;

it laments like a flute for the men of Kir-heres,

because the wealth they acquired has perished.

37For every head is shaved

and every beard is clipped;

on every hand is a gash

and around every waist is sackcloth.

38On all the rooftops of Moab

and in the public squares,

everyone is mourning;

for I have shattered Moab like an unwanted jar,

declares the LORD.

39How shattered it is! How they wail!

How Moab has turned his back in shame!

Moab will become an object of ridicule and horror

to all those around him.”

40For this is what the LORD says:

“Behold, an eagle swoops down

and spreads his wings against Moab.

41Kirioth has been taken,

and the strongholds seized.

In that day the heart of Moab’s warriors

will be like the heart of a woman in labor.

42Moab will be destroyed as a nation

because he vaunted himself against the LORD.

43Terror, pit, and snare await you, O resident of Moab,

declares the LORD. 44

He who flees the panic

will fall into the pit,

and he who climbs from the pit

will be caught in the snare,

for I will bring against Moab

the year of their punishment,

declares the LORD.

45Those who flee will stand helpless in Heshbon’s shadow,

because fire has gone forth from Heshbon

and a flame from within Sihon.

It will devour the foreheads of Moab

and the skulls of the noisemakers.

46Woe to you, O Moab!

The people of Chemosh have perished;

for your sons have been taken into exile

and your daughters have gone into captivity.

47Yet in the latter days I will restore Moab from captivity,h

declares the LORD.”

Here ends the judgment on Moab.

Footnotes:

2 a The Hebrew for Heshbon sounds like the Hebrew for plot
2 b The name of the Moabite town Madmen sounds like the Hebrew for silenced
4 c Hebrew; LXX Her cries are heard as far away as Zoar
6 d Or like a wild donkey, or like (the town of) Aroer
9 e Or Give wings to Moab, for she would fly away
32 f Probably the Dead Sea
32 g Two Hebrew manuscripts and LXX; most Hebrew manuscripts to the Sea of Jazer
47 h Or restore the fortunes of Moab

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Jeremiah 47
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