A prophecy about Jerusalem
1A prophecy against the Valley of Vision:
What troubles you now,
that you have all gone up on the roofs,
2you town so full of commotion,
you city of tumult and revelry?
Your slain were not killed by the sword,
nor did they die in battle.
3All your leaders have fled together;
they have been captured without using the bow.
All you who were caught were taken prisoner together,
having fled while the enemy was still far away.
4Therefore I said, ‘Turn away from me;
let me weep bitterly.
Do not try to console me
over the destruction of my people.’
5The Lord, the Lord Almighty, has a day
of tumult and trampling and terror
in the Valley of Vision,
a day of battering down walls
and of crying out to the mountains.
6Elam takes up the quiver,
with her charioteers and horses;
Kir uncovers the shield.
7Your choicest valleys are full of chariots,
and horsemen are posted at the city gates.
8The Lord stripped away the defences of Judah,
and you looked in that day
to the weapons in the Palace of the Forest.
9You saw that the walls of the City of David
were broken through in many places;
you stored up water
in the Lower Pool.
10You counted the buildings in Jerusalem
and tore down houses to strengthen the wall.
11You built a reservoir between the two walls
for the water of the Old Pool,
but you did not look to the One who made it,
or have regard for the One who planned it long ago.
12The Lord, the Lord Almighty,
called you on that day
to weep and to wail,
to tear out your hair and put on sackcloth.
13But see, there is joy and revelry,
slaughtering of cattle and killing of sheep,
eating of meat and drinking of wine!
‘Let us eat and drink,’ you say,
‘for tomorrow we die!’
14The Lord Almighty has revealed this in my hearing: ‘Till your dying day this sin will not be atoned for,’ says the Lord, the Lord Almighty.
15This is what the Lord, the Lord Almighty, says:
‘Go, say to this steward,
to Shebna the palace administrator:
16what are you doing here and who gave you permission
to cut out a grave for yourself here,
hewing your grave on the height
and chiselling your resting-place in the rock?
17‘Beware, the Lord is about to take firm hold of you
and hurl you away, you mighty man.
18He will roll you up tightly like a ball
and throw you into a large country.
There you will die
and there the chariots you were so proud of
will become a disgrace to your master’s house.
19I will depose you from your office,
and you will be ousted from your position.
20‘In that day I will summon my servant, Eliakim son of Hilkiah. 21I will clothe him with your robe and fasten your sash around him and hand your authority over to him. He will be a father to those who live in Jerusalem and to the people of Judah. 22I will place on his shoulder the key to the house of David; what he opens no-one can shut, and what he shuts no-one can open. 23I will drive him like a peg into a firm place; he will become a seat#22:23 Or throne of honour for the house of his father. 24All the glory of his family will hang on him: its offspring and offshoots – all its lesser vessels, from the bowls to all the jars.
25‘In that day,’ declares the Lord Almighty, ‘the peg driven into the firm place will give way; it will be sheared off and will fall, and the load hanging on it will be cut down.’ The Lord has spoken.