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The book of the prophet Jeremiah, chapter 51, New English Translation and King James Version

Chapter 51

New English Translation

   1 The LORD says, "I will cause a destructive wind to blow against Babylon and the people who inhabit Babylonia.
   2 I will send people to winnow Babylonia like a wind blowing away chaff. They will winnow her and strip her land bare. This will happen when they come against her from every direction, when it is time to destroy her.
   3 Do not give her archers time to string their bows or to put on their coats of armor. Do not spare any of her young men. Completely destroy her whole army.
   4 Let them fall slain in the land of Babylonia, mortally wounded in the streets of her cities.
   5 "For Israel and Judah will not be forsaken by their God, the LORD who rules over all. For the land of Babylonia is full of guilt against the Holy One of Israel.
   6 Get out of Babylonia quickly, you foreign people. Flee to save your lives. Do not let yourselves be killed because of her sins. For it is time for the LORD to wreak his revenge. He will pay Babylonia back for what she has done.
   7 Babylonia had been a gold cup in the LORD's hand. She had made the whole world drunk. The nations had drunk from the wine of her wrath. So they have all gone mad.
   8 But suddenly Babylonia will fall and be destroyed. Cry out in mourning over it! Get medicine for her wounds! Perhaps she can be healed!
   9 Foreigners living there will say, 'We tried to heal her, but she could not be healed. Let's leave Babylonia and each go back to his own country. For judgment on her will be vast in its proportions. It will be like it is piled up to heaven, stacked up into the clouds.'
   10 The exiles from Judah will say, 'The LORD has brought about a great deliverance for us! Come on, let's go and proclaim in Zion what the LORD our God has done!'
   11 "Sharpen your arrows! Fill your quivers! The LORD will arouse a spirit of hostility in the kings of Media. For he intends to destroy Babylonia. For that is how the LORD will get his revenge - how he will get his revenge for the Babylonians' destruction of his temple.
   12 Give the signal to attack Babylon's wall! Bring more guards! Post them all around the city! Put men in ambush! For the LORD will do what he has planned. He will do what he said he would do to the people of Babylon.
   13 "You who live along the rivers of Babylon, the time of your end has come. You who are rich in plundered treasure, it is time for your lives to be cut off.
   14 The LORD who rules over all has solemnly sworn, 'I will fill your land with enemy soldiers. They will swarm over it like locusts. They will raise up shouts of victory over it.'
   15 He is the one who by his power made the earth. He is the one who by his wisdom fixed the world in place, by his understanding he spread out the heavens.
   16 When his voice thunders, the waters in the heavens roar. He makes the clouds rise from the far-off horizons. He makes the lightning flash out in the midst of the rain. He unleashes the wind from the places where he stores it.
   17 All idolaters will prove to be stupid and ignorant. Every goldsmith will be disgraced by the idol he made. For the image he forges is merely a sham. There is no breath in any of those idols.
   18 They are worthless, objects to be ridiculed. When the time comes to punish them, they will be destroyed.
   19 The LORD, who is the portion of the descendants of Jacob, is not like them. For he is the one who created everything, including the people of Israel whom he claims as his own. He is known as the LORD who rules over all.
   20 "Babylon, you are my war club, my weapon for battle. I used you to smash nations. I used you to destroy kingdoms.
   21 I used you to smash horses and their riders. I used you to smash chariots and their drivers.
   22 I used you to smash men and women. I used you to smash old men and young men. I used you to smash young men and young women.
   23 I used you to smash shepherds and their flocks. I used you to smash farmers and their teams of oxen. I used you to smash governors and leaders."
   24 "But I will repay Babylon and all who live in Babylonia for all the wicked things they did in Zion right before the eyes of you Judeans," says the LORD.
   25 The LORD says, "Beware! I am opposed to you, Babylon! You are like a destructive mountain that destroys all the earth. I will unleash my power against you; I will roll you off the cliffs and make you like a burned-out mountain.
   26 No one will use any of your stones as a cornerstone. No one will use any of them in the foundation of his house. For you will lie desolate forever," says the LORD.
   27 "Raise up battle flags throughout the lands. Sound the trumpets calling the nations to do battle. Prepare the nations to do battle against Babylonia. Call for these kingdoms to attack her:Ararat, Minni, and Ashkenaz. Appoint a commander to lead the attack. Send horses against her like a swarm of locusts.
   28 Prepare the nations to do battle against her. Prepare the kings of the Medes. Prepare their governors and all their leaders. Prepare all the countries they rule to do battle against her.
   29 The earth will tremble and writhe in agony. For the LORD will carry out his plan. He plans to make the land of Babylonia a wasteland where no one lives.
   30 The soldiers of Babylonia will stop fighting. They will remain in their fortified cities. They will lose their strength to do battle. They will be as frightened as women. The houses in her cities will be set on fire. The gates of her cities will be broken down.
   31 One runner after another will come to the king of Babylon. One messenger after another will come bringing news. They will bring news to the king of Babylon that his whole city has been captured.
   32 They will report that the fords have been captured, the reed marshes have been burned, the soldiers are terrified.
   33 For the LORD God of Israel who rules over all says, 'Fair Babylon will be like a threshing floor which has been trampled flat for harvest. The time for her to be cut down and harvested will come very soon.'
   34 "King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon devoured me and drove my people out. Like a monster from the deep he swallowed me. He filled his belly with my riches. He made me an empty dish. He completely cleaned me out."
   35 The person who lives in Zion says, "May Babylon pay for the violence done to me and to my relatives." Jerusalem says, "May those living in Babylonia pay for the bloodshed of my people."
   36 Therefore the LORD says, "I will stand up for your cause. I will pay the Babylonians back for what they have done to you. I will dry up their sea. I will make their springs run dry.
   37 Babylon will become a heap of ruins. Jackals will make their home there. It will become an object of horror and of hissing scorn, a place where no one lives.
   38 The Babylonians are all like lions roaring for prey. They are like lion cubs growling for something to eat.
   39 When their appetites are all stirred up, I will set out a banquet for them. I will make them drunk so that they will pass out, they will fall asleep forever, they will never wake up," says the LORD.
   40 "I will lead them off to be slaughtered like lambs, rams, and male goats."
   41 "See how Babylon has been captured! See how the pride of the whole earth has been taken! See what an object of horror Babylon has become among the nations!
   42 The sea has swept over Babylon. She has been covered by a multitude of its waves.
   43 The towns of Babylonia have become heaps of ruins. She has become a dry and barren desert. No one lives in those towns any more. No one even passes through them.
   44 I will punish the god Bel in Babylon. I will make him spit out what he has swallowed. The nations will not come streaming to him any longer. Indeed, the walls of Babylon will fall."
   45 "Get out of Babylon, my people! Flee to save your lives from the fierce anger of the LORD!
   46 Do not lose your courage or become afraid because of the reports that are heard in the land. For a report will come in one year. Another report will follow it in the next. There will be violence in the land with ruler fighting against ruler."
   47 "So the time will certainly come when I will punish the idols of Babylon. Her whole land will be put to shame. All her mortally wounded will collapse in her midst.
   48 Then heaven and earth and all that is in them will sing for joy over Babylon. For destroyers from the north will attack it," says the LORD.
   49 "Babylon must fall because of the Israelites she has killed, just as the earth's mortally wounded fell because of Babylon.
   50 You who have escaped the sword, go, do not delay. Remember the LORD in a faraway land. Think about Jerusalem.
   51 'We are ashamed because we have been insulted. Our faces show our disgrace. For foreigners have invaded the holy rooms in the LORD's temple.'
   52 Yes, but the time will certainly come," says the LORD, "when I will punish her idols. Throughout her land the mortally wounded will groan.
   53 Even if Babylon climbs high into the sky and fortifies her elevated stronghold, I will send destroyers against her," says the LORD.
   54 Cries of anguish will come from Babylon, the sound of great destruction from the land of the Babylonians.
   55 For the LORD is ready to destroy Babylon, and put an end to her loud noise. Their waves will roar like turbulent waters. They will make a deafening noise.
   56 For a destroyer is attacking Babylon. Her warriors will be captured; their bows will be broken. For the LORD is a God who punishes; he pays back in full.
   57 "I will make her officials and wise men drunk, along with her governors, leaders, and warriors. They will fall asleep forever and never wake up," says the King whose name is the LORD who rules over all.
   58 This is what the LORD who rules over all says, "Babylon's thick wall will be completely demolished. Her high gates will be set on fire. The peoples strive for what does not satisfy. The nations grow weary trying to get what will be destroyed."
   59 This is the order Jeremiah the prophet gave to Seraiah son of Neriah, son of Mahseiah, when he went to King Zedekiah of Judah in Babylon during the fourth year of his reign. (Seraiah was a quartermaster. ) 60 Jeremiah recorded on one scroll all the judgments that would come upon Babylon - all these prophecies written about Babylon. 61 Then Jeremiah said to Seraiah, "When you arrive in Babylon, make sure you read aloud all these prophecies. 62 Then say, 'O LORD, you have announced that you will destroy this place so that no people or animals live in it any longer. Certainly it will lie desolate forever!' 63 When you finish reading this scroll aloud, tie a stone to it and throw it into the middle of the Euphrates River. 64 Then say, 'In the same way Babylon will sink and never rise again because of the judgments I am ready to bring upon her; they will grow faint.'" The prophecies of Jeremiah end here.

King James Version

   1 Thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will raise up against Babylon, and against them that dwell in the midst of them that rise up against me, a destroying wind;
   2 And will send unto Babylon fanners, that shall fan her, and shall empty her land: for in the day of trouble they shall be against her round about.
   3 Against him that bendeth let the archer bend his bow, and against him that lifteth himself up in his brigandine: and spare ye not her young men; destroy ye utterly all her host.
   4 Thus the slain shall fall in the land of the Chaldeans, and they that are thrust through in her streets.
   5 For Israel hath not been forsaken, nor Judah of his God, of the LORD of hosts; though their land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel.
   6 Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul: be not cut off in her iniquity; for this is the time of the LORD'S vengeance; he will render unto her a recompence.
   7 Babylon hath been a golden cup in the LORD'S hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad.
   8 Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: howl for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed.
   9 We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country: for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies.
   10 The LORD hath brought forth our righteousness: come, and let us declare in Zion the work of the LORD our God.
   11 Make bright the arrows; gather the shields: the LORD hath raised up the spirit of the kings of the Medes: for his device is against Babylon, to destroy it; because it is the vengeance of the LORD, the vengeance of his temple.
   12 Set up the standard upon the walls of Babylon, make the watch strong, set up the watchmen, prepare the ambushes: for the LORD hath both devised and done that which he spake against the inhabitants of Babylon.
   13 O thou that dwellest upon many waters, abundant in treasures, thine end is come, and the measure of thy covetousness.
   14 The LORD of hosts hath sworn by himself, saying, Surely I will fill thee with men, as with caterpillers; and they shall lift up a shout against thee.
   15 He hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom, and hath stretched out the heaven by his understanding.
   16 When he uttereth his voice, there is a multitude of waters in the heavens; and he causeth the vapours to ascend from the ends of the earth: he maketh lightnings with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasures.
   17 Every man is brutish by his knowledge; every founder is confounded by the graven image: for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them.
   18 They are vanity, the work of errors: in the time of their visitation they shall perish.
   19 The portion of Jacob is not like them; for he is the former of all things: and Israel is the rod of his inheritance: the LORD of hosts is his name.
   20 Thou art my battle axe and weapons of war: for with thee will I break in pieces the nations, and with thee will I destroy kingdoms;
   21 And with thee will I break in pieces the horse and his rider; and with thee will I break in pieces the chariot and his rider;
   22 With thee also will I break in pieces man and woman; and with thee will I break in pieces old and young; and with thee will I break in pieces the young man and the maid;
   23 I will also break in pieces with thee the shepherd and his flock; and with thee will I break in pieces the husbandman and his yoke of oxen; and with thee will I break in pieces captains and rulers.
   24 And I will render unto Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chaldea all their evil that they have done in Zion in your sight, saith the LORD.
   25 Behold, I am against thee, O destroying mountain, saith the LORD, which destroyest all the earth: and I will stretch out mine hand upon thee, and roll thee down from the rocks, and will make thee a burnt mountain.
   26 And they shall not take of thee a stone for a corner, nor a stone for foundations; but thou shalt be desolate for ever, saith the LORD.
   27 Set ye up a standard in the land, blow the trumpet among the nations, prepare the nations against her, call together against her the kingdoms of Ararat, Minni, and Ashchenaz; appoint a captain against her; cause the horses to come up as the rough caterpillers.
   28 Prepare against her the nations with the kings of the Medes, the captains thereof, and all the rulers thereof, and all the land of his dominion.
   29 And the land shall tremble and sorrow: for every purpose of the LORD shall be performed against Babylon, to make the land of Babylon a desolation without an inhabitant.
   30 The mighty men of Babylon have forborn to fight, they have remained in their holds: their might hath failed; they became as women: they have burned her dwellingplaces; her bars are broken.
   31 One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to meet another, to shew the king of Babylon that his city is taken at one end,
   32 And that the passages are stopped, and the reeds they have burned with fire, and the men of war are affrighted.
   33 For thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; The daughter of Babylon is like a threshingfloor, it is time to thresh her: yet a little while, and the time of her harvest shall come.
   34 Nebuchadrezzar the king of Babylon hath devoured me, he hath crushed me, he hath made me an empty vessel, he hath swallowed me up like a dragon, he hath filled his belly with my delicates, he hath cast me out.
   35 The violence done to me and to my flesh be upon Babylon, shall the inhabitant of Zion say; and my blood upon the inhabitants of Chaldea, shall Jerusalem say.
   36 Therefore thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will plead thy cause, and take vengeance for thee; and I will dry up her sea, and make her springs dry.
   37 And Babylon shall become heaps, a dwellingplace for dragons, an astonishment, and an hissing, without an inhabitant.
   38 They shall roar together like lions: they shall yell as lions' whelps.
   39 In their heat I will make their feasts, and I will make them drunken, that they may rejoice, and sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith the LORD.
   40 I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams with he goats.
   41 How is Sheshach taken! and how is the praise of the whole earth surprised! how is Babylon become an astonishment among the nations!
   42 The sea is come up upon Babylon: she is covered with the multitude of the waves thereof.
   43 Her cities are a desolation, a dry land, and a wilderness, a land wherein no man dwelleth, neither doth any son of man pass thereby.
   44 And I will punish Bel in Babylon, and I will bring forth out of his mouth that which he hath swallowed up: and the nations shall not flow together any more unto him: yea, the wall of Babylon shall fall.
   45 My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and deliver ye every man his soul from the fierce anger of the LORD.
   46 And lest your heart faint, and ye fear for the rumour that shall be heard in the land; a rumour shall both come one year, and after that in another year shall come a rumour, and violence in the land, ruler against ruler.
   47 Therefore, behold, the days come, that I will do judgment upon the graven images of Babylon: and her whole land shall be confounded, and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her.
   48 Then the heaven and the earth, and all that is therein, shall sing for Babylon: for the spoilers shall come unto her from the north, saith the LORD.
   49 As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the earth.
   50 Ye that have escaped the sword, go away, stand not still: remember the LORD afar off, and let Jerusalem come into your mind.
   51 We are confounded, because we have heard reproach: shame hath covered our faces: for strangers are come into the sanctuaries of the LORD'S house.
   52 Wherefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will do judgment upon her graven images: and through all her land the wounded shall groan.
   53 Though Babylon should mount up to heaven, and though she should fortify the height of her strength, yet from me shall spoilers come unto her, saith the LORD.
   54 A sound of a cry cometh from Babylon, and great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans:
   55 Because the LORD hath spoiled Babylon, and destroyed out of her the great voice; when her waves do roar like great waters, a noise of their voice is uttered:
   56 Because the spoiler is come upon her, even upon Babylon, and her mighty men are taken, every one of their bows is broken: for the LORD God of recompences shall surely requite.
   57 And I will make drunk her princes, and her wise men, her captains, and her rulers, and her mighty men: and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith the King, whose name is the LORD of hosts.
   58 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly broken, and her high gates shall be burned with fire; and the people shall labour in vain, and the folk in the fire, and they shall be weary.
   59 ¶ The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Maaseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah into Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. And this Seraiah was a quiet prince.
   60 So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written against Babylon.
   61 And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, When thou comest to Babylon, and shalt see, and shalt read all these words;
   62 Then shalt thou say, O LORD, thou hast spoken against this place, to cut it off, that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be desolate for ever.
   63 And it shall be, when thou hast made an end of reading this book, that thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of Euphrates:
   64 And thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.

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