1. The word that the LORD spoke against Babylon, against the land of the Chaldeans by Jeremiah the prophet.
2. “Declare among the nations, and cause them to hear, and lift up a banner. Cause them to hear, do not hide it; say, ‘Babylon is captured, Bel is ashamed, Merodach is broken in pieces; her images are shamed, her idols are broken in pieces.’
3. For out of the north a nation comes up against her, which shall make her land a desert, and none shall dwell in it. They shall flee, they shall depart, both man and beast.
4. In those days, and at that time,” says the LORD, “the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together, going and weeping. They shall go and seek the LORD their God.
5. They shall ask the way to Zion with their faces there, saying, ‘Come and let us join ourselves to the LORD in an everlasting covenant never to be forgotten.’
6. My people have been lost sheep; their shepherds have caused them to go astray; they have turned them away on the mountains. They have gone from mountain to hill; they have forgotten their resting place.
7. All who have found them have devoured them. And their enemies said, ‘We are not guilty because they have sinned against the LORD, the habitation of righteousness, even the LORD, the hope of their fathers.’
8. Flee from the midst of Babylon, and go out of the land of the Chaldeans, and be as the he-goats before the flocks.
9. For, lo, I am stirring up and bringing up against Babylon a company of great nations from a northern land. And they shall array themselves against her. She shall be captured there. Their arrows shall be as those of a skillful, mighty man; who does not return empty-handed.
10. And Chaldea shall be a prize; all who plunder her shall be satisfied,” says the LORD.
11. “Because you were glad, because you rejoiced, O destroyers of My inheritance; because you frolic about like a heifer in the grass, and neigh like mighty horses;
12. Your mother shall be deeply ashamed; she who bore you shall turn pale. Behold, the last of the nations shall be a wilderness, a dry land, and a desert.
13. Because of the wrath of the LORD it shall not be inhabited, but it shall be wholly desolate. Everyone who goes by Babylon shall be appalled and hiss at all her plagues.
14. Set yourselves in battle array against Babylon all around; all you who bend the bow, shoot at her. Hold back no arrows, for she has sinned against the LORD.
15. Shout against her all around. She has given up her hand in defeat; her bulwarks have fallen, her walls have been thrown down; for it is the vengeance of the LORD, take vengeance upon her. Just as she has done, do to her.
16. Cut off the sower from Babylon, and the one who handles the sickle in the time of harvest. For fear of the pressing sword they shall turn, each one to his people; and they shall flee, each one to his own land.
17. Israel is as scattered sheep, driven away by lions. First the king of Assyria devoured him, and last this Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon crunched his bones.”
18. Therefore thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, “Behold, I will punish the king of Babylon and his land, as I have punished the king of Assyria.
19. And I will again bring Israel to his pasture, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied on Mount Ephraim and Gilead.
20. In those days, and at that time,” says the LORD, “the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and it shall not be found; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found; for I will pardon those whom I leave as a remnant.
21. Go up against the land of Merathaim, even against it and against the people of Pekod. Slay and utterly destroy after them,” says the LORD, “and do according to all that I have commanded you.
22. A sound of battle is in the land, and great destruction.
23. How the hammer of the whole earth is cut asunder and broken! How Babylon has become a desolation among the nations!
24. I have laid a trap for you, and you are also captured, O Babylon, and you were unaware. You were found and also caught because you have fought against the LORD.
25. The LORD has opened His armory, and has brought forth the weapons of His fury. For this is a work of the Lord GOD of hosts in the land of the Chaldeans.
26. Come against her from the border; open her storehouses; cast her up as heaps, and destroy her completely. Let nothing of her be left.
27. Kill all her bulls; let them go down to the slaughter. Woe to them! For their day has come, the time of their punishment.
28. The voice of those who flee and escape out of the land of Babylon, to declare in Zion the vengeance of the LORD our God, the vengeance of His temple.
29. Call together the archers against Babylon. All you who bend a bow, camp against it all around; let none of them escape. Repay her according to her work; according to all that she has done, do to her. For she has been arrogant against the LORD, against the Holy One of Israel.
30. So her young men shall fall in the streets, and all her men of war shall be silenced in that day,” says the LORD.
31. “Behold, I am against you, O arrogant one,” says the Lord GOD of hosts; “for your day has come, the time that I will punish you.
32. And the most arrogant shall stumble and fall, and none shall raise him up. And I will kindle a fire in his cities, and it shall burn up everything all around him.”
33. Thus says the LORD of hosts, “The children of Israel and the children of Judah were oppressed together. And all who captured them held them fast; they refused to let them go.
34. Their Redeemer is strong; The LORD of hosts, is His name. He shall thoroughly plead their cause, so that He may give rest to the land, but unrest to the people of Babylon.
35. A sword is upon the Chaldeans,” says the LORD, “and upon the people of Babylon, and upon her rulers, and upon her wise men.
36. A sword is upon the liars, and they shall become fools. A sword is upon her mighty men, and they shall be afraid.
37. A sword is upon their horses and their chariots, and upon all the mixed people in her midst; and they shall become as women. A sword is upon her treasuries, and they shall be robbed.
38. A drought is upon her waters; and they shall be dried up. For it is the land of idols, and they act insanely with idols.
39. So the beasts of the desert shall dwell there with jackals. And the daughters of the ostrich shall dwell in her again. And it shall no more be inhabited forever; neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation.
40. As God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and their neighbors,” says the LORD, “no man shall live there; neither shall any son of man live in it.
41. Behold, a people shall come from the north, even a great nation; and many kings shall be stirred up from the farthest parts of the earth.
42. They lay hold on a bow and spear; they are cruel and will not show mercy. Their voice shall roar like the sea, and they shall ride on horses arrayed like a man for the battle against you, O daughter of Babylon.
43. The king of Babylon has heard the report of them, and his hands became feeble. Anguish took hold of him, and pangs like those of a woman in labor.
44. Behold, he shall come up like a lion from the thickets of the Jordan to the home of the strong. But I will make them suddenly run away from her. And whoever is chosen, will I appoint over her? For who is like Me? And will appoint Me the time? And who is that shepherd who will stand against Me?”
45. Therefore hear the counsel of the LORD that He has taken against Babylon; and His purposes which He has purposed against the land of the Chaldeans. Surely the least of the flock shall drag them away; surely He shall make their pasture desolate because of them.
46. At the sound of the capture of Babylon the earth quakes, and a cry is heard among the nations.
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