you can amuse yourselves by taking up this satire, a taunt against the king of Babylon: Can you believe it? The tyrant is gone! The tyranny is over!
God has broken the rule of the wicked, the power of the bully-rulers
That crushed many people. A relentless rain of cruel outrage Established a violent rule of anger rife with torture and persecution.
And now it's over, the whole earth quietly at rest. Burst into song! Make the rafters ring!
Ponderosa pine trees are happy, giant Lebanon cedars are relieved, saying, "Since you've been cut down, there's no one around to cut us down."
And the underworld dead are all excited, preparing to welcome you when you come. Getting ready to greet you are the ghostly dead, all the famous names of earth. All the buried kings of the nations will stand up on their thrones
With well-prepared speeches, royal invitations to death: "Now you are as nothing as we are! Make yourselves at home with us dead folks!"
This is where your pomp and fine music led you, Babylon, to your underworld private chambers, A king-size mattress of maggots for repose and a quilt of crawling worms for warmth.
What a comedown this, O Babylon! Daystar! Son of Dawn! Flat on your face in the underworld mud, you, famous for flattening nations!
You said to yourself, "I'll climb to heaven. I'll set my throne over the stars of God. I'll run the assembly of angels that meets on sacred Mount Zaphon.
I'll climb to the top of the clouds. I'll take over as King of the Universe!"
But you didn't make it, did you? Instead of climbing up, you came down - Down with the underground dead, down to the abyss of the Pit.
People will stare and muse: "Can this be the one Who terrorized earth and its kingdoms,
turned earth to a moonscape, Wasted its cities, shut up his prisoners to a living death?"
Other kings get a decent burial, honored with eulogies and placed in a tomb.
But you're dumped in a ditch unburied, like a stray dog or cat, Covered with rotting bodies, murdered and indigent corpses. Your dead body desecrated, mutilated -
no state funeral for you! You've left your land in ruins, left a legacy of massacre. The progeny of your evil life will never be named. Oblivion!
Get a place ready to slaughter the sons of the wicked and wipe out their father's line. Unthinkable that they should own a square foot of land or desecrate the face of the world with their cities!
"I will confront them" - Decree of God-of-the-Angel-Armies - "and strip Babylon of name and survivors, children and grandchildren.
" God's Decree. "I'll make it a worthless swamp and give it as a prize to the hedgehog. And then I'll bulldoze it out of existence." Decree of God-of-the-Angel-Armies. Who Could Ever Cancel Such Plans?
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)