PERES means that your kingdom has been divided and given to the Medes and Persians.”
An oracle against the desert by the sea: Like storms that pass over the Negev, it comes from the desert, from the land of terror. A troubling vision is declared to me: "The treacherous one acts treacherously, and the destroyer destroys. Advance, Elam! Lay siege, you Medes! I will put an end to all her groaning." Therefore I am filled with anguish. Pain grips me, like the pain of a woman in labor. I am too perplexed to hear, too dismayed to see. read more.
My heart staggers; horror terrifies me. He has turned my last glimmer of hope into sheer terror. Prepare a table, and spread out a carpet! Eat and drink! Rise up, you princes, and oil the shields! For the Lord has said to me, "Go, post a lookout; let him report what he sees. When he sees riders- pairs of horsemen, riders on donkeys, riders on camels- pay close attention." Then the lookout reported, "Lord, I stand on the watchtower all day, and I stay at my post all night. Look, riders come- horsemen in pairs." And he answered, saying, "Babylon has fallen, has fallen. All the idols of her gods have been shattered on the ground." My downtrodden and threshed people, I have declared to you what I have heard from the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel.
In the first year of Darius the Mede, I stood up to strengthen and protect him. Now I will tell you the truth. "Three more kings will arise in Persia, and the fourth will be far richer than the others. By the power he gains through his riches, he will stir up everyone against the kingdom of Greece. Then a warrior king will arise; he will rule a vast realm and do whatever he wants. read more.
But as soon as he is established, his kingdom will be broken up and divided to the four winds of heaven, but not to his descendants; it will not be the same kingdom that he ruled, because his kingdom will be uprooted and will go to others besides them.
"My king, as you were watching, a colossal statue appeared. That statue, tall and dazzling, was standing in front of you, and its appearance was terrifying. The head of the statue was pure gold, its chest and arms were silver, its stomach and thighs were bronze, its legs were iron, and its feet were partly iron and partly fired clay. read more.
As you were watching, a stone broke off without a hand touching it, struck the statue on its feet of iron and fired clay, and crushed them. Then the iron, the fired clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold were shattered and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors. The wind carried them away, and not a trace of them could be found. But the stone that struck the statue became a great mountain and filled the whole earth. "This was the dream; now we will tell the king its interpretation. Your Majesty, you are king of kings. The God of heaven has given you sovereignty, power, strength, and glory. Wherever people live-or wild animals, or birds of the air-He has handed them over to you and made you ruler over them all. You are the head of gold. "After you, there will arise another kingdom, inferior to yours, and then another, a third kingdom, of bronze, which will rule the whole earth. A fourth kingdom will be as strong as iron; for iron crushes and shatters everything, and like iron that smashes, it will crush and smash all the others. You saw the feet and toes, partly of a potter's fired clay and partly of iron-it will be a divided kingdom, though some of the strength of iron will be in it. You saw the iron mixed with clay, and that the toes of the feet were part iron and part fired clay-part of the kingdom will be strong, and part will be brittle. You saw the iron mixed with clay-the peoples will mix with one another but will not hold together, just as iron does not mix with fired clay. "In the days of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, and this kingdom will not be left to another people. It will crush all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, but will itself endure forever. You saw a stone break off from the mountain without a hand touching it, and it crushed the iron, bronze, fired clay, silver, and gold. The great God has told the king what will happen in the future. The dream is true, and its interpretation certain."
Persia,Cush, and Put are with them, all of them with shields and helmets;
Look! I am stirring up the Medes against them,
who cannot be bought off with silver
and who have no desire for gold.
[This is] the word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet about Elam at the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah. This is what the Lord of Hosts says: I am about to shatter Elam's bow, the source of their might. I will bring the four winds against Elam from the four corners of the heavens, and I will scatter them to all these winds. There will not be a nation to which Elam's banished ones will not go. read more.
I will devastate Elam before their enemies, before those who want to take their lives. I will bring disaster on them, My burning anger. [This is]*The bracketed text has been added for clarity. the Lord's declaration. I will send the sword after them until I finish them off. I will set My throne in Elam, and I will destroy the king and officials from there. [This is] the Lord's declaration. In the last days, I will restore the fortunes of Elam. [This is] the Lord's declaration.
Sharpen the arrows! Fill the quivers! The Lord has put it into the mind of the kings of the Medes because His plan is aimed at Babylon to destroy her, for it is the Lord's vengeance, vengeance for His temple. Raise up a signal flag against the walls of Babylon; fortify the watch post; set the watchmen in place; prepare the ambush. For the Lord has both planned and accomplished what He has threatened against those who live in Babylon. You who reside by many waters, rich in treasures, your end has come, your life thread is cut. read more.
The Lord of Hosts has sworn by Himself: I will fill you up with men as with locusts, and they will sing the victory song over you. He made the earth by His power, established the world by His wisdom, and spread out the heavens by His understanding. When He thunders, the waters in the heavens are in turmoil, and He causes the clouds to rise from the ends of the earth. He makes lightning for the rain and brings the wind from His storehouses. Everyone is stupid and ignorant. Every goldsmith is put to shame by [his] carved image, for his cast images are a lie; there is no breath in them. They are worthless, a work to be mocked. At the time of their punishment they will be destroyed. Jacob's Portion is not like these because He is the One who formed all things. [Israel is] the tribe of His inheritance; the Lord of Hosts is His name. You are My battle club, My weapons of war. With you I will smash nations; with you I will bring kingdoms to ruin. With you I will smash the horse and its rider; with you I will smash the chariot and its rider. With you I will smash man and woman; with you I will smash the old man and the youth; with you I will smash the young man and the virgin. With you I will smash the shepherd and his flock; with you I will smash the farmer and his ox-team. With you I will smash governors and officials. "I will repay Babylon and all the residents of Chaldea for all their evil they have done in Zion before your very eyes." [This is]*The bracketed text has been added for clarity. the Lord's declaration. Look, I am against you, devastating mountain- [this is]*The bracketed text has been added for clarity. the Lord's declaration- you devastate the whole earth. I will stretch out My hand against you, roll you down from the cliffs, and turn you into a burned-out mountain. No one will be able to retrieve a cornerstone or a foundation stone from you, because you will become desolate forever. [This is] the Lord's declaration. Raise a signal flag in the land; blow a ram's horn among the nations; set apart the nations against her. Summon kingdoms against her- Ararat, Minni, and Ashkenaz. Appoint a marshal against her; bring up horses like a swarm of locusts. Set apart the nations for battle against her- the kings of Media, her governors and all her officials, and all the lands they rule. The earth quakes and trembles, because the Lord's purposes against Babylon stand: to make the land of Babylon an uninhabited desolation. Babylon's warriors have stopped fighting; they sit in their strongholds. Their might is exhausted; they have become like women. Babylon's homes have been set ablaze, her gate bars are shattered. Messenger races to meet messenger, and herald to meet herald, to announce to the king of Babylon that his city has been captured from end [to end]. The fords have been seized, the marshes set on fire, and the soldiers are terrified. For this is what the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel, says: The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing floor at the time it is trampled. In just a little while her harvest time will come. "Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon has devoured me; he has crushed me. He has set me aside like an empty dish; he has swallowed me like a sea monster; he filled his belly with my delicacies; he has vomited me out," says the inhabitant of Zion; "Let the violence [done] to me and my family [be done] to Babylon. Let my blood be on the inhabitants of Chaldea," says Jerusalem. Therefore, this is what the Lord says: I am about to plead your case and take vengeance on your behalf; I will dry up her sea and make her fountain run dry. Babylon will become a heap of rubble, a jackals' den, a desolation and an object of scorn, without inhabitant. They will roar together like young lions; they will growl like lion cubs. While they are flushed with heat, I will serve them a feast, and I will make them drunk so that they revel. Then they will fall asleep forever and never wake up. [This is]*The bracketed text has been added for clarity. the Lord's declaration. I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams together with male goats. How Sheshach has been captured, the praise of the whole earth seized. What a horror Babylon has become among the nations! The sea has risen over Babylon; she is covered with its turbulent waves. Her cities have become a desolation, a dry and arid land, a land where no one lives, where no human being passes through. I will punish Bel in Babylon. I will make him vomit what he swallowed. The nations will no longer stream to him; even Babylon's wall will fall. Come out from among her, My people! Save your lives, each of you, from the Lord's burning anger. May you not become faint-hearted and fearful when the report is proclaimed in the land, for the report will come one year, and then another the next year. There will be violence in the land with ruler against ruler. Therefore, look, the days are coming when I will punish Babylon's carved images. Her entire land will suffer shame, and all her slain will lie fallen within her. Heaven and earth and everything in them will shout for joy over Babylon because the destroyers from the north will come against her. [This is] the Lord's declaration. Babylon must fall [because of] the slain of Israel, even as the slain of all the earth fell because of Babylon. You who have escaped the sword, go and do not stand still! Remember the Lord from far away, and let Jerusalem come to your mind. We are ashamed because we have heard insults. Humiliation covers our faces because foreigners have entered the holy places of the Lord's temple. Therefore, look, the days are coming- [this is]*The bracketed text has been added for clarity. the Lord's declaration- when I will punish her carved images, and the wounded will groan throughout her land. Even if Babylon should ascend to the heavens and fortify her tall fortresses, destroyers will come against her from Me. [This is] the Lord's declaration. The sound of a cry from Babylon! The sound of great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans! For the Lord is going to devastate Babylon; He will silence her mighty voice. Their waves roar like abundant waters; the tumult of their voice resounds, for a destroyer is coming against her, against Babylon. Her warriors will be captured, their bows shattered, for the Lord is a God of retribution; He will certainly repay. I will make her princes and sages drunk, along with her governors, officials, and warriors. Then they will fall asleep forever and never wake up. [This is]*The bracketed text has been added for clarity. the King's declaration; the Lord of Hosts is His name. This is what the Lord of Hosts says: Babylon's thick walls will be totally demolished, and her high gates consumed by fire. The peoples will have labored for nothing; the nations will exhaust themselves [only to feed] the fire. [This is] what Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah son of Neriah son of Mahseiah, the quartermaster, when he went to Babylon with Zedekiah king of Judah in the fourth year of Zedekiah's reign. Jeremiah wrote on one scroll about all the disaster that would come to Babylon; all these words were written against Babylon. Jeremiah told Seraiah, "When you get to Babylon, see that you read all these words aloud. You must say, 'Lord, You have threatened to cut off this place so that no one will live in it-man or beast. Indeed, it will remain desolate forever.' When you have finished reading this scroll, tie a stone to it and throw it into the middle of the Euphrates River. Then say, 'In the same way, Babylon will sink and never rise again because of the disaster I am bringing on her. They will grow weary.' " The words of Jeremiah end here.
Elam is there with all her hordes around her grave. All of them are slain, fallen by the sword- they who went down to the underworld uncircumcised, who [once] spread their terror in the land of the living. They bear their disgrace with those who descend to the Pit. Among the slain they prepare a resting place for Elam with all her hordes. Her graves are all around her. All of them are uncircumcised, slain by the sword, although their terror was [once] spread in the land of the living. They bear their disgrace with those who descend to the Pit. They are placed among the slain.