4 For Gaza shall be deserted,
and Ashkelon shall become a desolation;
Ashdods people shall be driven out at noon,
and Ekron shall be uprooted.
5 Ah, inhabitants of the sea coast,
you nation of the Cherethites!
The word of the Lord is against you,
O Canaan, land of the Philistines;
and I will destroy you until no inhabitant is left.
6 And you, O sea coast, shall be pastures,
meadows for shepherds
and folds for flocks.
7 The sea coast shall become the possession
of the remnant of the house of Judah,
on which they shall pasture,
and in the houses of Ashkelon
they shall lie down at evening.
For the Lord their God will be mindful of them
and restore their fortunes.
8 I have heard the taunts of Moab
and the revilings of the Ammonites,
how they have taunted my people
and made boasts against their territory.
9 Therefore, as I live, says the Lord of hosts,
the God of Israel,
Moab shall become like Sodom
and the Ammonites like Gomorrah,
a land possessed by nettles and salt-pits,
and a waste for ever.
The remnant of my people shall plunder them,
and the survivors of my nation shall possess them.
10 This shall be their lot in return for their pride,
because they scoffed and boasted
against the people of the Lord of hosts.
11 The Lord will be terrible against them;
he will shrivel all the gods of the earth,
and to him shall bow down,
each in its place,
all the coasts and islands of the nations.
12 You also, O Ethiopians,*
shall be killed by my sword.
13 And he will stretch out his hand against the north,
and destroy Assyria;
and he will make Nineveh a desolation,
a dry waste like the desert.
14 Herds shall lie down in it,
every wild animal;*
the desert-owl* and the screech-owl*
shall lodge on its capitals;
the owl* shall hoot at the window,
the raven* croak on the threshold;
for its cedar-work will be laid bare.
15 Is this the exultant city
that lived secure,
that said to itself,
I am, and there is no one else?
What a desolation it has become,
a lair for wild animals!
Everyone who passes by it
hisses and shakes the fist.
New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright © 1989, 1995 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. http://nrsvbibles.org
10 February 2011