Isaiah 21

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Isaiah 21

Oracles concerning Babylon, Edom, and Arabia

1The oracle concerning the wilderness of the sea.

As whirlwinds in the Negeb sweep on,

it comes from the desert,

from a terrible land.

2A stern vision is told to me;

the plunderer plunders,

and the destroyer destroys.

Go up, O Elam,

lay siege, O Media;

all the sighing she has caused

I bring to an end.

3Therefore my loins are filled with anguish;

pangs have seized me,

like the pangs of a woman in travail;

I am bowed down so that I cannot hear,

I am dismayed so that I cannot see.

4My mind reels, horror has appalled me;

the twilight I longed for

has been turned for me into trembling.

5They prepare the table,

they spread the rugs,

they eat, they drink.

Arise, O princes,

oil the shield!

6For thus the Lord said to me:

"Go, set a watchman,

let him announce what he sees.

7When he sees riders, horsemen in pairs,

riders on asses, riders on camels,

let him listen diligently,

very diligently."

8Then he who sawa cried:

"Upon a watchtower I stand, O Lord,

continually by day,

and at my post I am stationed

whole nights.

9And behold, here come riders,

horsemen in pairs!"

And he answered,

"Fallen, fallen is Babylon;

and all the images of her gods

he has shattered to the ground."

10O my threshed and winnowed one,

what I have heard from the Lord of hosts,

the God of Israel, I announce to you.

11The oracle concerning Dumah.

One is calling to me from Se'ir,

"Watchman, what of the night?

Watchman, what of the night?"

12The watchman says:

"Morning comes, and also the night.

If you will inquire, inquire;

come back again."

13The oracle concerning Arabia.

In the thickets in Arabia you will lodge,

O caravans of De'danites.

14To the thirsty bring water,

meet the fugitive with bread,

O inhabitants of the land of Tema.

15For they have fled from the swords,

from the drawn sword,

from the bent bow,

and from the press of battle.

16For thus the Lord said to me, "Within a year, according to the years of a hireling, all the glory of Kedar will come to an end; 17and the remainder of the archers of the mighty men of the sons of Kedar will be few; for the Lord, the God of Israel, has spoken."