God's Word came to me, saying,
"You, son of man - God, the Master, has this Message for the land of Israel: "'Endtime. The end of business as usual for everyone.
It's all over. The end is upon you. I've launched my anger against you. I've issued my verdict on the way you live. I'll make you pay for your disgusting obscenities.
I won't look the other way, I won't feel sorry for you. I'll make you pay for the way you've lived: Your disgusting obscenities will boomerang on you, and you'll realize that I am God.'
"I, God, the Master, say: 'Disaster after disaster! Look, it comes!
Endtime - the end comes. The end is ripe. Watch out, it's coming!
This is your fate, you who live in this land. Time's up. It's zero hour. No dragging of feet now, no bargaining for more time.
Soon now I'll pour my wrath on you, pay out my anger against you, Render my verdict on the way you've lived, make you pay for your disgusting obscenities.
I won't look the other way, I won't feel sorry for you. I'll make you pay for the way you've lived. Your disgusting obscenities will boomerang on you. Then you'll realize that it is I, God, who has hit you.
"'Judgment Day! Fate has caught up with you. The scepter outsized and pretentious, pride bursting all bounds,
Violence strutting, brandishing the evil scepter. But there's nothing to them, and nothing will be left of them.
Time's up. Countdown: five, four, three, two . . . Buyer, don't crow; seller, don't worry: Judgment wrath has turned the world topsy-turvy.
The bottom has dropped out of buying and selling. It will never be the same again. But don't fantasize an upturn in the market. The country is bankrupt because of its sins, and it's not going to get any better.
"'The trumpet signals the call to battle: "Present arms!" But no one marches into battle. My wrath has them paralyzed!
On the open roads you're killed, or else you go home and die of hunger and disease. Either get murdered out in the country or die of sickness or hunger in town.
Survivors run for the hills. They moan like doves in the valleys, Each one moaning for his own sins.
"'Every hand hangs limp, every knee turns to rubber.
They dress in rough burlap - sorry scarecrows, Shifty and shamefaced, with their heads shaved bald.
"'They throw their money into the gutters. Their hard-earned cash stinks like garbage. They find that it won't buy a thing they either want or need on Judgment Day. They tripped on money and fell into sin.
Proud and pretentious with their jewels, they deck out their vile and vulgar no-gods in finery. I'll make those god-obscenities a stench in their nostrils.
I'll give away their religious junk - strangers will pick it up for free, the godless spit on it and make jokes.
I'll turn my face so I won't have to look as my treasured place and people are violated, As violent strangers walk in and desecrate place and people -
A bloody massacre, as crime and violence fill the city.
I'll bring in the dregs of humanity to move into their houses. I'll put a stop to the boasting and strutting of the high-and-mighty, And see to it that there'll be nothing holy left in their holy places.
Catastrophe descends. They look for peace, but there's no peace to be found -
Disaster on the heels of disaster, one rumor after another. They clamor for the prophet to tell them what's up, but nobody knows anything. Priests don't have a clue; the elders don't know what to say.
The king holds his head in despair; the prince is devastated. The common people are paralyzed. Gripped by fear, they can't move. I'll deal with them where they are, judge them on their terms. They'll know that I am God.'"
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)