“If thieves crept up on you,
they’d rob you blind—isn’t that so?
If they mugged you on the streets at night,
they’d pick you clean—isn’t that so?
Oh, they’ll take Esau apart, piece by piece,
empty his purse and pockets.
All your old partners will drive you to the edge.
Your old friends will lie to your face.
Your old drinking buddies will stab you in the back.
Your world will collapse. You won’t know what hit you.
So don’t be surprised”—it’s GOD’s sure Word!—
“when I wipe out all sages from Edom
and rid the Esau mountains of its famous wise men.
Your great heroes will desert you, Teman.
There’ll be nobody left in Esau’s mountains.
Because of the murderous history compiled
against your brother Jacob,
You will be looked down on by everyone.
You’ll lose your place in history.
On that day you stood there and didn’t do anything.
Strangers took your brother’s army into exile.
Godless foreigners invaded and pillaged Jerusalem.
You stood there and watched.
You were as bad as they were.
You shouldn’t have gloated over your brother
when he was down-and-out.
You shouldn’t have laughed and joked at Judah’s sons
when they were facedown in the mud.
You shouldn’t have talked so big
when everything was so bad.
You shouldn’t have taken advantage of my people
when their lives had fallen apart.
You of all people should not have been amused
by their troubles, their wrecked nation.
You shouldn’t have taken the shirt off their back
when they were knocked flat, defenseless.
And you shouldn’t have stood waiting at the outskirts
and cut off refugees,
And traitorously turned in helpless survivors
who had lost everything.
* * *