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The Oxford Study Bible Study Bible supplemented with commentary from scholars of various religions.

Chapter 49

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1Of the Ammonites. Thus says the LORD:

Has Israel no sons? Has he no heir? Why then has Milcom inherited the land of Gad, and why do Milcom's people live in its towns? 2Therefore a time is coming, says the LORD, when I shall make Rabbah of the Ammonites hear the battle cry, when it will become a desolate mound and its villages will be burnt to ashes; then Israel will disinherit all who disinherited them, says the LORD.

3Wail, Heshbon, for Ai is despoiled; cry aloud, you villages round Rabbah! Put on sackcloth and beat your breast, and score your bodies with gashes a 49:3 gashes: prob. rdg, cp. Aram. (Targ.); Heb. fences. , for Milcom will go into exile, and with him his priests and attendants. 4Why do you glory in your strength, you wayward people who trust in your arsenals and say, ‘Who will dare attack me?’ 5Beware, I am bringing terror on you from every side, says the Lord GOD of Hosts; every one of you will be driven headlong with no one to rally the fugitives. 6Yet after this I shall restore the fortunes of Ammon. This is the word of the LORD.

7Of Edom. The LORD of Hosts has said:

Is wisdom no longer to be found in Teman? Have her wise men lost all skill in counsel? Has their wisdom been dispersed abroad? 8Turn and flee, people of Dedan, take refuge in remote places; for I shall bring retribution on Esau, his day of reckoning. 9If vintagers were to come to you they would surely leave gleanings; and if thieves were to raid your crops by night, they would take only enough for their needs. 10But I have ransacked Esau's treasure, I have uncovered his hiding-places, and he has nowhere to conceal himself. His children, his kinsfolk, and his neighbours are despoiled; there is no one to deliver him. 11Am I to keep alive your fatherless children? Are your widows to depend on me?

12For these are the words of the LORD: Those who were not doomed to drink the cup must drink it none the less; are you alone to go unpunished? You will not escape; you will have to drink it. 13For by my life, says the LORD, Bozrah will become an object of horror and reproach, a desolation and a thing of cursing; and all her towns will be desolate for ever.

14When a herald was sent among the nations crying, ‘Gather and march against her, prepare for battle,’ I heard this message from the LORD: 15Look, I make you the least of all nations, most despised of people. 16Your overbearing arrogance and your insolent heart have led you astray. You, whose haunts are in the crannies of the rock, you keep your hold on the hilltop. Though you nest as high as an eagle, even from there I shall bring you down. This is the word of the LORD. 17Edom will become an object of horror, all who pass that way will be horror-struck, astounded at the sight of all her wounds, 18overthrown as she is like Sodom and Gomorrah and their neighbours, says the LORD. No one will live there, no human being will make a home in her.

19Like a lion coming up from Jordan's dense thickets to the perennial pastures, in a moment I shall chase the shepherd away and round up the choicest of b 49:19 the choicest of: prob. rdg; Heb. who is chosen? the rams. For who is like me? Who can arraign me? What shepherd can stand his ground before me?

20Therefore listen to the LORD's purpose against Edom and his plans against the people of Teman:

The young of the flock will be dragged off, and their pasture will be aghast at their fate. 21At the sound of their downfall the land quakes; it cries out, and the sound is heard at the Red Sea c 49:21 Red Sea: or sea of Reeds. . 22Like an eagle with outspread wings he will soar and swoop down against Bozrah, and on that day the spirit of Edom's warriors will be like the spirit of a woman in labour.

23Of Damascus.

Hamath and Arpad are covered with confusion, for they have heard news of disaster; they are tossed up and down in anxiety like d 49:23 like: so some MSS, others in. the unresting sea. 24Damascus has lost heart and turns to flight; trembling has seized her, pangs like childbirth have gripped her. 25How forlorn is the town of joyful song, the place of gladness e 49:25 of gladness: so Syriac; Heb. of my gladness. ! 26Therefore her young men will fall in her streets and all her warriors lie still in death that day. This is the word of the LORD of Hosts. 27Then I shall kindle a fire within the wall of Damascus and it will devour Ben-hadad's palaces.

28Of Kedar and the kingdoms of Hazor which King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon subdued. The LORD has said:

Come, attack Kedar, despoil the eastern desert-dwellers. 29Carry away their tents and their flocks, the curtains of their tents and all their goods, and drive off their camels. A cry will go up: ‘Terror let loose!’ 30Flee and make your escape, take refuge in remote places, you people of Hazor, says the LORD; for King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon has laid his plans, he has formed a design against you: 31‘Come, let us attack a nation at peace, living in fancied security f 49:31 security: so Gk; Heb. adds says the LORD. with no barred gates, dwelling in isolation.’

32Their camels will be carried off as booty, their vast herds of cattle as plunder; I shall scatter them to all the winds to roam the fringes of the desert g 49:32 them … desert: or to the wind those who clip the hair on their temples. , and from every side I shall bring retribution on them, says the LORD. 33Hazor will become a haunt of wolves, for ever desolate, where no one will live, no mortal make a home. This is the word of the LORD.

34This came to the prophet Jeremiah as the word of the LORD concerning Elam, at the beginning of the reign of King Zedekiah of Judah: 35Thus says the LORD of Hosts:

I shall break the bow of Elam, the chief weapon of their might; 36I shall bring four winds against Elam from the four quarters of heaven; I shall scatter them to all these winds, and there will be no nation to which the exiles from Elam do not go. 37I shall break Elam before their foes, before those who are bent on their destruction; I shall vent my fierce anger upon them in disaster; I shall pursue them with the sword until I make an end of them, says the LORD. 38Then I shall set my throne in Elam, and destroy the king and his officers there. This is the word of the LORD. 39Yet in days to come I shall restore the fortunes of Elam. This is the word of the LORD.

Notes:

a 49:3 gashes: prob. rdg, cp. Aram. (Targ.); Heb. fences.

b 49:19 the choicest of: prob. rdg; Heb. who is chosen?

c 49:21 Red Sea: or sea of Reeds.

d 49:23 like: so some MSS, others in.

e 49:25 of gladness: so Syriac; Heb. of my gladness.

f 49:31 security: so Gk; Heb. adds says the LORD.

g 49:32 them … desert: or to the wind those who clip the hair on their temples.

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