Prediction of Babylon’s Fall
1“Come down, virgin daughter of Babylon, and sit in the dust.
For your days of sitting on a throne have ended.
O daughter of Babylonia,# Or Chaldea; also in 47:5. never again will you be
the lovely princess, tender and delicate.
2Take heavy millstones and grind flour.
Remove your veil, and strip off your robe.
Expose yourself to public view.# Hebrew Bare your legs; pass through the rivers.
3You will be naked and burdened with shame.
I will take vengeance against you without pity.”
4Our Redeemer, whose name is the lord of Heaven’s Armies,
is the Holy One of Israel.
5“O beautiful Babylon, sit now in darkness and silence.
Never again will you be known as the queen of kingdoms.
6For I was angry with my chosen people
and punished them by letting them fall into your hands.
But you, Babylon, showed them no mercy.
You oppressed even the elderly.
7You said, ‘I will reign forever as queen of the world!’
You did not reflect on your actions
or think about their consequences.
8“Listen to this, you pleasure-loving kingdom,
living at ease and feeling secure.
You say, ‘I am the only one, and there is no other.
I will never be a widow or lose my children.’
9Well, both these things will come upon you in a moment:
widowhood and the loss of your children.
Yes, these calamities will come upon you,
despite all your witchcraft and magic.
10“You felt secure in your wickedness.
‘No one sees me,’ you said.
But your ‘wisdom’ and ‘knowledge’ have led you astray,
and you said, ‘I am the only one, and there is no other.’
11So disaster will overtake you,
and you won’t be able to charm it away.
Calamity will fall upon you,
and you won’t be able to buy your way out.
A catastrophe will strike you suddenly,
one for which you are not prepared.
12“Now use your magical charms!
Use the spells you have worked at all these years!
Maybe they will do you some good.
Maybe they can make someone afraid of you.
13All the advice you receive has made you tired.
Where are all your astrologers,
those stargazers who make predictions each month?
Let them stand up and save you from what the future holds.
14But they are like straw burning in a fire;
they cannot save themselves from the flame.
You will get no help from them at all;
their hearth is no place to sit for warmth.
15And all your friends,
those with whom you’ve done business since childhood,
will go their own ways,
turning a deaf ear to your cries.