Woe to Nineveh
1Woe to the bloody city,
all full of lies and plunder—
no end to the prey!
2The crack of the whip, and rumble of the wheel,
galloping horse and bounding chariot!
flashing sword and glittering spear,
hosts of slain,
heaps of corpses,
dead bodies without end—
they stumble over the bodies!
4And all for the countless whorings of the prostitute,
graceful and of deadly charms,
who betrays nations with her whorings,
and peoples with her charms.
5Behold, I am against you,
declares the LORD of hosts,
and will lift up your skirts over your face;
and I will make nations look at your nakedness
and kingdoms at your shame.
6I will throw filth at you
and treat you with contempt
and make you a spectacle.
7And all who look at you will shrink from you and say,
“Wasted is Nineveh; who will grieve for her?”
Where shall I seek comforters for you?
8Are you better than Thebes3:8 Hebrew No-amon
that sat by the Nile,
with water round her,
her rampart a sea,
and water her wall?
9Cush was her strength;
Egypt too, and that without limit;
Put and the Libyans were her3:9 Hebrew your helpers.
10Yet she became an exile;
she went into captivity;
her infants were dashed in pieces
at the head of every street;
for her honoured men lots were cast,
and all her great men were bound in chains.
11You also will be drunken;
you will go into hiding;
you will seek a refuge from the enemy.
12All your fortresses are like fig trees
with first-ripe figs—
if shaken they fall
into the mouth of the eater.
13Behold, your troops
are women in your midst.
The gates of your land
are wide open to your enemies;
fire has devoured your bars.
14Draw water for the siege;
strengthen your forts;
go into the clay;
tread the mortar;
take hold of the brick mould!
15There will the fire devour you;
the sword will cut you off.
It will devour you like the locust.
Multiply yourselves like the locust;
multiply like the grasshopper!
16You increased your merchants
more than the stars of the heavens.
The locust spreads its wings and flies away.
17Your princes are like grasshoppers,
your scribes3:17 Or marshals like clouds of locusts
settling on the fences
in a day of cold—
when the sun rises, they fly away;
no one knows where they are.
18Your shepherds are asleep,
O king of Assyria;
your nobles slumber.
Your people are scattered on the mountains
with none to gather them.
19There is no easing your hurt;
your wound is grievous.
All who hear the news about you
clap their hands over you.
For upon whom has not come
your unceasing evil?
Notification: The English text of the ESV Bible may not be translated into any other language or used as the basis of a derivative work or as the sole base English text from which any translation of the Bible is made. Outside of Paratext, users may not copy or download more than 500 consecutive verses of the ESV Bible or more than one half of any book of the ESV Bible. ESV® Bible, copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. All rights reserved. ESV text edition: 2016.