Punishment for Nineveh
The Lord said:
1 Doom to the crime capital!
Nineveh, city of murder
and treachery,
2 here is your fate—
cracking whips,
churning wheels;
galloping horses,
roaring chariots;
3 cavalry attacking,
swords and spears flashing;
soldiers stumbling
over piles of dead bodies.
4 You were nothing more
than a prostitute
using your magical charms
and witchcraft
to attract and trap nations.

5 But I, the Lord All-Powerful,
am now your enemy.
I will pull up your skirt
and let nations and kingdoms
stare at your nakedness.
6 I will cover you with garbage,
treat you like trash,
and rub you in the dirt.
7 Everyone who sees you
will turn away and shout,
“Nineveh is done for!
Is anyone willing to mourn
or to give her comfort?”
Nineveh's Fate Is Sealed
8 Nineveh, do you feel safer
than the city of Thebes?
The Nile River
was its wall of defense.
9 Thebes trusted the mighty power
of Ethiopia and Egypt;
the nations of Put and Libya
were her allies.
10 But she was captured and taken
to a foreign country.
Her children were murdered
at every street corner.
The members of her royal family
were auctioned off,
and her high officials
were bound in chains.

11 Nineveh, now it's your turn!
You will get drunk and try to hide
from your enemy.
12 Your fortresses are fig trees
with ripe figs.
Merely shake the trees,
and fruit will fall
into every open mouth.
13 Your army is weak.
Fire has destroyed the crossbars
on your city gates;
now they stand wide open
to your enemy.

14 Your city is under attack.
Haul in extra water!
Strengthen your defenses!
Start making bricks!
Stir the mortar!
15 You will still go up in flames
and be cut down by swords
that will wipe you out like a field
attacked by grasshoppers.
So, go ahead and increase
like a swarm of locusts!

16 More merchants are in your city
than there are stars
in the sky—
but they are like locusts
that eat everything,
then fly away.
17 Your guards and your officials
are swarms of locusts.
On a chilly day
they settle on a fence,
but when the sun comes out,
they take off
to who-knows-where.

18 King of Assyria,
your officials and leaders
are sound asleep,
while your people are scattered
in the mountains.
Yes, your people are sheep
without a shepherd.
19 You're fatally wounded.
There's no hope for you.
But everyone claps
when they hear this news,
because your constant cruelty
has caused them pain.