Babylon's false sense of security
Pull up a seat in the dirt1
Lovely Lady Babylon
Take a seat in the dirt.
Your dainty days are over.
Your throne is in the dust.
Take off your veil and grind the grain.
Take off your robe, show your legs
As you wade across the rivers.
3 The world will see you naked,
And the shame of who you are.
I’ll pay you back for what you did. 
And nothing is going to stop me.
4 The LORD of everyone is the Savior,
The Holy God of Israel.
Shut up, Babylon5
Shut your mouth and sit in the corner
Lovely Lady Babylon.
Never again will your subjects call you
Queen of all the Nations.
I let you take their land.
Then I let you take the people.
You showed no mercy.
Not even to the elderly.
You sentenced all to hard labor.
7 “Lovey Lady Babylon”
You thought you’d always be.
You thought you’d get away with anything.
You never thought about the end.
8 Dear pampered little lady
Living in your gated town.
You tell yourself,
“Of all important people,
I’m the most important of them all.
I’ll never be a widow,
I’ll never lose a child.”
9 Suddenly, you’re going to suffer both.
You’re going to be a widow
You’re going to lose your kids.
Grief is going to hammer you full force.
Your royal charm and power
Is about to meet its match.
10 You knew it wasn’t right.
But you thought no one was watching.
Your advisors and sages gave bad advice.
You convinced yourself you’re invincible.
And there’s no one stronger than you.
11 Well, you’re about to get blindsided.
A force is coming that you can’t stop.
Not with regal charm or power.
12 Trust your sorcerers and your magic spells,
Which you’ve practiced all your life.
Perhaps they’ll show you how to win.
And scare the enemies away.
13 Sages advised you to exhaustion.
Let them save you with their skills.
Let them look for signs and power
In the sky lights of the night,
In the changes of the moon.
Then let them offer their predictions
Of what will happen to the Lady.
Babylon’s worthless advisors14
Hey, your advisors are worthless.
They’re like straw in a fire.
They can’t even save themselves.
This won’t be a coal fire,
Set to keep you warm.
Worthless all your life.
Now they’ve run to save themselves,
And no one’s saving you.
This poem mocks the Babylonian Empire that erased the Jewish nation of Judah from the world map in 586 BC, and deported the survivors to Babylon, in what is now Iraq. Parts of the poem, which many scholars say was written as history instead of prophecy, pretends to grieve for Babylon because Persia will swallow the Babylonian Empire—and Persian King Cyrus will take the capital without firing a shot.
Rich and royal people were often carried across rivers and streams. They didn’t wade like others.
Babylonians mistreated their Jewish captives and forced them to work at hard labor throughout their lives, even into old age (47:6).
The Israelite people broke their agreement with God by ignoring the rules God gave them to live by—especially the rule about worshiping only God, and never idols (Deuteronomy 28-29). Israel seemed to get that backwards. So, they got the opposite of the Promised Land. They got southern Iraq and hard labor for a generation. Persians freed them in 538 BC, 50 years after destroying Jerusalem.
- Sorry, there are currently no questions for this chapter.