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18 Woe to the land, the winged cymbal, which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia,

That sendeth ambassadors by the sea, and in vessels of bulrushes upon the waters. Go, ye swift angels, to a nation rent and torn in pieces: to a terrible people, after which there is no other: to a nation expecting and trodden under foot, whose land the rivers have spoiled.

All ye inhabitants of the world, who dwell on the earth, when the sign shall be lifted up on the mountains, you shall see, and you shall hear the sound of the trumpet.

For thus saith the Lord to me: I will take my rest, and consider in my place, as the noon light is clear, and as a cloud of dew in the day of harvest.

For before the harvest it was all flourishing, and it shall bud without perfect ripeness, and the sprigs thereof shall be cut off with pruning hooks: and what is left shall be cut away and shaken out.

And they shall be left together to the birds of the mountains, and the beasts of the earth: and the fowls shall be upon them all the summer, and all the beasts of the earth shall winter upon them.

At that time shall a present be brought to the Lord of hosts, from a people rent and torn in pieces: from a terrible people, after which there hath been no other: from a nation expecting, expecting and trodden under foot, whose land the rivers have spoiled, to the place of the name of the Lord of hosts, to mount Sion.

A Prophecy Against Cush

18 Woe(A) to the land of whirring wings[a]
    along the rivers of Cush,[b](B)
which sends envoys(C) by sea
    in papyrus(D) boats over the water.

Go, swift messengers,
to a people tall and smooth-skinned,(E)
    to a people feared far and wide,
an aggressive(F) nation of strange speech,
    whose land is divided by rivers.(G)

All you people of the world,(H)
    you who live on the earth,
when a banner(I) is raised on the mountains,
    you will see it,
and when a trumpet(J) sounds,
    you will hear it.
This is what the Lord says to me:
    “I will remain quiet(K) and will look on from my dwelling place,(L)
like shimmering heat in the sunshine,(M)
    like a cloud of dew(N) in the heat of harvest.”
For, before the harvest, when the blossom is gone
    and the flower becomes a ripening grape,
he will cut off(O) the shoots with pruning knives,
    and cut down and take away the spreading branches.(P)
They will all be left to the mountain birds of prey(Q)
    and to the wild animals;(R)
the birds will feed on them all summer,
    the wild animals all winter.

At that time gifts(S) will be brought to the Lord Almighty

from a people tall and smooth-skinned,(T)
    from a people feared(U) far and wide,
an aggressive nation of strange speech,
    whose land is divided by rivers(V)

the gifts will be brought to Mount Zion, the place of the Name of the Lord Almighty.(W)

Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 18:1 Or of locusts
  2. Isaiah 18:1 That is, the upper Nile region

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