Isaiah 13

1God showed Isaiah son of Amoz this sad message about Babylon. 2˻God said:˼ “Raise a flag on that mountain where nothing grows. Call out to the men. Wave your arms. Tell them to enter through the gates for important people!” 3˻God said:˼ “I have separated those men from the people. And I myself will command them. I am angry. I gathered my best men to punish the people. I am proud of these happy men! 4“There is a loud noise in the mountains. Listen to the noise! It sounds like many, many people. People from many kingdoms are gathering together. The Lord All-Powerful is calling his army together. 5The Lord and this army are coming from a faraway land. They are coming from beyond the horizon. The Lord will use this army like a weapon to show his anger. This army will destroy the whole country.” 6The Lord’s special day is near. So cry and be sad for yourselves. A time is coming when the enemy will steal your wealth. God All-Powerful will make that happen. 7People will lose their courage. Fear will make the people weak. 8Every person will be afraid. Their fear will cause their stomachs to hurt like a woman giving birth to a baby. Their faces will become red like fire. The people will be amazed because this look of fear will be on all their neighbors’ faces. 9Look, the Lord’s special day is coming! It will be a terrible day. God will become very angry, and he will destroy the country. God will force all people that sin to leave the country. 10The skies will be dark. The sun, the moon, and the stars will not shine. 11˻God says,˼ “I will cause bad things to happen to the world. I will punish the evil people for their sin. I will cause the proud people to lose their pride. I will stop the bragging of the people that are mean to others. 12There will be only a few people left. There will not be many, the same as gold is hard to find. And these people will be worth much more than pure gold. 13With my anger, I will make the sky shake. And the earth will be moved from its place.” That will happen on the day the Lord All-Powerful shows his anger. 14Then the people from Babylon will run away, like wounded deer. They will run like sheep that have no shepherd. Every person will turn and run back to his own country and people. 15˻But the enemy will chase the people of Babylon. And when the enemy˼ catches a person, the enemy will kill that person with a sword. 16Everything in their houses will be stolen. Their wives will be raped. And their little children will be beaten to death while the people are watching. 17˻God says,˼ “Look, I will cause the armies of Media to attack Babylon. ˻The armies of Media will not stop attacking,˼ even if they are paid silver and gold. 18The soldiers will attack and kill the young men of Babylon. The soldiers will not show mercy to the babies. The soldiers will not be kind to the children. 19Babylon will be destroyed—it will be like the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. God will cause this destruction, and there will be nothing left. “Babylon is the most beautiful of all kingdoms. The Babylonian people are very proud of their city. 20But Babylon will not continue to be beautiful. People will not continue to live there in the future. Arabs will not put their tents there. Shepherds will not bring their sheep to let them eat there. 21The only animals living there will be wild animals from the desert. People will not be living in their houses in Babylon. The houses will be full of owls and large birds. Wild goats will play in the houses. 22Wild dogs and wolves will howl in the great and beautiful buildings of Babylon. Babylon will be finished. The end of Babylon is near. I will not let Babylon’s destruction wait until later.”

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