Jeremiah 48

Jeremiah 48

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1 This message was given concerning Moab. This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: "Destruction is certain for 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 there is a plot against her life. In Heshbon plans have been completed to destroy her. `Come,' they say, `we will cut her off from being a nation.' The city of Madmen,* too, will be silenced; the sword will follow you there.1

3 And then the roar of battle will surge against Horonaim,

4 for all Moab is being destroyed. Her little ones will cry out.*2

5 Her refugees will climb the hills of Luhith, weeping bitterly, while cries of terror rise from Horonaim below.

6 Flee for your lives! Hide in the wilderness!*3

7 Because you have trusted in your wealth and skill, you will be taken captive. Your god Chemosh, with his priests and princes, will be exiled to distant lands!

8 "All the towns will be destroyed, both on the plateaus and in the valleys, for the LORD has spoken.

9 Oh, that Moab had wings so she could fly away, for her cities will be left empty, with no one living in them.

10 Cursed be those who refuse to do the work the LORD has given them, who hold back their swords from shedding blood!

11 "From her earliest history, Moab has lived in peace. She is like wine that has been allowed to settle. She has not been poured from flask to flask, and she is now fragrant and smooth.

12 But the time is coming soon," says the LORD, "when I will send troublemakers to pour her from her jar. They will pour her out, then shatter the jar!

13 At last Moab will be ashamed of her idol Chemosh, as Israel was ashamed of her gold calf at Bethel.*4

14 "You used to boast, `We are heroes, mighty men of war.'

15 But now Moab and her towns will be destroyed. Her most promising youth are doomed to slaughter," says the King, whose name is the LORD Almighty.

16 "Calamity is coming fast to Moab; it threatens ominously.

17 "You friends of Moab, weep for her 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 The people of Aroer stand anxiously beside the road to watch. They shout to those who flee from Moab, `What has happened there?'

20 "And the reply comes back, `Moab lies in ruins; weep and wail! Tell it by the banks of the Arnon River: Moab has been destroyed!'

21 All the cities of the plateau lie in ruins, too. Judgment has been poured out on them all--on Holon and Jahaz* and Mephaath,5

22 and on Dibon and Nebo and Beth-diblathaim,

23 and on Kiriathaim and Beth-gamul and Beth-meon,

24 and on Kerioth and Bozrah--all the cities of Moab, far and near.

25 "The strength of Moab has ended. Her horns have been cut off, and her arms have been broken," says the LORD.

26 "Let her stagger and fall like a drunkard, for she has rebelled against the LORD. Moab will wallow in her own vomit, ridiculed by all.

27 Did you not make Israel the object of your ridicule? Was she caught in the company of thieves that you should despise her as you do?

28 "You people of Moab, flee from your cities and towns! Live in the caves like doves that nest in the clefts of the rocks.

29 We have heard of the pride of Moab, for it is very great. We know of her loftiness, her arrogance, and her haughty heart.

30 I know about her insolence," says the LORD, "but her boasts are false; they accomplish nothing.

31 Yes, I wail for Moab; my heart is broken for the men of Kir-hareseth.*6

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,* but the destroyer has stripped you bare! He has harvested your grapes and summer fruits.7

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1: Madmen sounds like the Hebrew word for “silence”; it should not be confused with the English word madmen.

2: Greek version reads Her cries are heard as far away as Zoar.

3: Or Be like [the town of] Aroer in the wilderness.

4: Hebrew ashamed when they trusted in Bethel.

5: Hebrew Jahzah, a variant name for Jahaz.

6: Hebrew Kir-heres, a variant name for Kir-hareseth; also in 48:36.

7: Hebrew the sea of Jazer.

New Living Translation Bible and Notes used with permission Tyndale House Publishers.

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