A Message About Moab 48 1Here is what the Lord says about Moab.   The Lord who rules over all is the God of Israel. He says,   “How terrible it will be for Nebo! It will be destroyed. Kiriathaim will be captured. It will be put to shame. Its fort will be broken down. It will be put to shame. 2Moab will not be praised anymore. In Heshbon people will plan its fall from power. They will say, ‘Come. Let’s put an end to that nation.’ City of Madmen, you too will be silent because you are sad. My sword will hunt you down. 3Listen to the cries from Horonaim. The town is being completely destroyed. 4Moab will be broken. Her little ones will cry out. 5The people go up the road to Luhith. They are sobbing bitterly as they go. Loud cries are heard on the road down to Horonaim. People cry out because the town is being destroyed. 6People of Moab run away! Run for your lives! Become like a lonely bush in the desert. 7You trust in the things you can do. You trust in your riches. So you too will be taken away as prisoners. Your god Chemosh will be carried away. So will its priests and officials. 8The one who is going to destroy you will come against every town. Not even one of them will escape. The valley and the high flatlands will be destroyed. I, the Lord, have spoken. 9Sprinkle salt all over Moab. It will be completely destroyed. Its towns will be a dry and empty desert. No one will live in them.   10“May a person who is lazy when he does my work be under my curse! May anyone who keeps his sword from killing be under my curse!   11“Moab has been at peace and rest from its earliest days. It is like wine that has not been shaken up. It has not been poured from one jar to another. Moab’s people have not been taken away from their land. They are like wine that tastes as it always did. Its smell has not changed at all. 12But other days are coming,” announces the Lord. “At that time I will send people who pour wine from jars. They will pour Moab out like wine. They will empty its jars. They will smash its jugs. 13Then Moab’s people will be ashamed of their god Chemosh. They will be ashamed just as the people of Israel were when they trusted in their god at Bethel.   14“How can you say, ‘We are soldiers. We are men who are brave in battle’? 15Moab will be destroyed. Its enemies will march into its towns. Her finest young men will die in battle,” announces the King. His name is The Lord Who Rules Over All. 16“The fall of Moab is near. Its time of trouble will come quickly. 17All you who live around it, sob over its people. Be sad, you who know how famous Moab is. Say, ‘Its powerful ruler’s rod is broken! His glorious staff is smashed.’   18“Come down from your glorious city, you who live in Dibon. Come and sit on the thirsty ground. The one who destroys your country will come up and attack you. Your enemies will destroy your cities that have high walls around them. 19Stand by the road and watch, you who live in Aroer. Ask the men who are running away. Ask the women who are escaping. Ask them, ‘What has happened?’ 20Moab has been put to shame. It has been destroyed. Sob and cry out! Tell everyone Moab has been destroyed. Announce it by the Arnon River. 21The high flatlands have been judged. So have Holon, Jahzah and Mephaath. 22Dibon, Nebo and Beth Diblathaim have been judged. 23So have Kiriathaim, Beth Gamul and Beth Meon. 24Kerioth and Bozrah have also been judged. And so have all of the towns of Moab, far and near alike. 25Moab’s power is gone. Its strength is broken,” {flushright}announces the Lord.   26“Moab’s people think they are better than I am. So let their enemies make them drunk. Let the people get sick and throw up. Let them roll around in the mess they have made. Let people laugh at them. 27Moab, you laughed at Israel, didn’t you? Were Israel’s people caught among robbers? Is that why you shake your head at them? Is that why you make fun of them every time you talk about them? 28Leave your towns, you who live in Moab. Go and live among the rocks. Be like a dove that makes its nest at the mouth of a cave.   29“We have heard all about Moab’s pride. We have heard how very proud they are. They think they are so much better than others. Their pride reaches deep down inside their hearts. 30I know how rude they are. But it will not get them anywhere,” {flushright}announces the Lord. “Their bragging does not accomplish anything. 31So I cry out over Moab. I cry for all of Moab’s people. I groan for the men of Kir Hareseth. 32I sob over you as Jazer sobs, you vines of Sibmah. Your branches used to spread out. They went all the way down to the Dead Sea. They reached as far as the sea of Jazer. The one who destroys your country has taken away your grapes and ripe fruit. 33Joy has left your orchards. Gladness is gone from your fields. I have stopped the flow of juice from your winepresses. No one stomps on your grapes with shouts of joy. There are shouts. But they are not shouts of joy.   34“The sound of their cry rises from Heshbon. It rises as far as Elealeh and Jahaz. It rises from Zoar. It goes all the way to Horonaim and Eglath Shelishiyah. Even the waters at Nimrim are dried up. 35In Moab people sacrifice offerings on the high places. They burn incense to their gods. But I will put an end to those people,” {flushright}announces the Lord. 36“Like a flute my heart sings a song of sadness for Moab. It sings like a flute for the men of Kir Hareseth. The wealth they had gotten is gone. 37Every head is shaved. Every beard is cut off. Every hand is cut. And every waist is covered with black cloth. 38Sobbing is the only sound in Moab. It is heard on all of its roofs. It is heard in the market places. I have broken Moab like a jar that no one wants,” {flushright}announces the Lord. 39“How broken Moab is! How the people sob! They turn away from others because they are so ashamed. All those who are around them laugh at them. They are shocked at them.”   40The Lord says,   “Look! Nebuchadnezzar is like an eagle diving down. He is spreading his wings over Moab. 41Kerioth will be captured. Its forts will be taken. At that time the hearts of Moab’s soldiers will tremble in fear. They will be like the heart of a woman having a baby. 42Moab will be destroyed as a nation. That is because its people thought they were better than I am. 43You people of Moab,” {flushright}announces the Lord, “terror, a pit and a trap are waiting for you. 44Anyone who runs away from the terror will fall into the pit. Anyone who climbs out of the pit will be caught in the trap. The time is coming when I will punish Moab,” {flushright}announces the Lord.   45“In the shadow of Heshbon those who are trying to escape stand helpless. A fire has blazed out from Heshbon. Flames have come out from Sihon’s city. It burns the foreheads of Moab’s people. It burns the skulls of those who brag loudly. 46How terrible it will be for you, Moab! Those who worship Chemosh are destroyed. Your sons are being taken to another country. Your daughters are taken away as prisoners.   47“But in days to come I will bless Moab with great success again,” {flushright}announces the Lord.   That’s the report about how the Lord said he would judge Moab.
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