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The Lord Will Judge the Nations

At that time I, the Lord, will make Judah and Jerusalem prosperous again. Then in Judgment Valley[a] I will bring together the nations that scattered my people Israel everywhere in the world, and I will bring charges against those nations. They divided up my land and gambled to see who would get my people; they sold boys and girls to pay for prostitutes and wine.

You people of Tyre and Sidon[b] and you Philistines, why are you doing this? Are you trying to get even with me? I’ll strike back before you know what’s happened. You’ve taken my prized possessions, including my silver and gold, and carried them off to your temples.[c] You have dragged the people of Judah and Jerusalem from their land and sold them to the Greeks.

But I’ll make the people of Judah determined to come home, and what happened to them will happen to you. I’ll hand over your sons and daughters to the people of Judah, and they will sell them to the Sabeans,[d] who live far away. I, the Lord, have spoken!

Judgment in Judgment Valley

Say to the nations:

“Get ready for war!
    Be eager to fight.
Line up for battle
    and prepare to attack.
10 Make swords out of plows
and spears out of garden tools.
    Strengthen every weakling.”

11 Hurry, all you nations!
    Come quickly.
Ask the Lord to bring
    his warriors along.[e]
12 You must come now
    to Judgment Valley,[f]
where the Lord will judge
    the surrounding nations.

13 They are a field of ripe crops.
    Bring in the harvest!
They are grapes piled high.
    Start trampling them now![g]
If our enemy’s sins were wine,
    every jar would overflow.
14 Crowds fill Decision Valley.
The judgment day of the Lord
    will soon be here—
15 no light from the sun or moon,
    and stars no longer shine.
16 From the heart of Jerusalem
the Lord roars like a lion,
    shaking the earth and sky.
But the Lord is a fortress,
a place of safety
    for his people Israel.

God Will Bless His People

17 I am the Lord your God.
And you will know I live on Zion,
    my sacred hill,
because Jerusalem will be sacred,
    untouched by foreign troops.
18 On that day, fruitful vineyards
    will cover the mountains.
And your cattle and goats
that graze on the hills
    will produce a lot of milk.
Streams in Judah
    will never run dry;
a stream from my house
    will flow in Acacia Valley.[h]

19 Egypt and Edom were cruel
and brutal to Judah,
    without a reason.
Now their countries will become
    a barren desert,
20 but Judah and Jerusalem
    will always have people.
21 I, the Lord, live on Mount Zion.
I will punish the guilty
    and defend the innocent.[i]

Footnotes

  1. 3.2 Judgment Valley: The Hebrew text has “Jehoshaphat Valley,” which means “Valley of the Lord’s Judgment.” This valley is mentioned here and in verse 12, but nowhere else in the Bible.
  2. 3.4 Tyre and Sidon: Two Phoenician coastal cities.
  3. 3.5 temples: Or “palaces.”
  4. 3.8 Sabeans: The people of Seba, a region in southwest Arabia.
  5. 3.11 Ask. . . along: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  6. 3.12 Judgment Valley: See the note at 3.2.
  7. 3.13 grapes. . . now: People trampled grapes with their bare feet to squeeze out the juice.
  8. 3.18 Acacia Valley: In the plains of Moab, northeast of the Dead Sea.
  9. 3.21 I will. . . innocent: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.

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