Bible Book List

Jeremiah 48 Common English Bible (CEB)

Prophecy against Moab

48 Concerning Moab:

The Lord of heavenly forces,
    the God of Israel, proclaims:
How awful for Nebo;
    it lies in ruins.
Kirathaim is captured and shamed;
    the fortress is disgraced,
        reduced to rubble.
No one sings Moab’s praise any longer!
    In Heshbon they are hatching
        a plot against her:
    “Come, let’s bring down the nation!”
    You too, Madmen, will be silenced;
        the sword will pursue you.
Listen to the cries for help from Horonaim:
    “Destruction and massive devastation!”
Moab is shattered;
    its young cry for help.
On the way up to Luhith,
        there is uncontrollable weeping.
    On the way down to Horonaim,
        they hear sobs of anguish.
Run for your lives!
    Be like Aroer[a] in the desert.
Because you have relied
        on your own strength and treasures,
    you also will be captured.
Chemosh will go into exile,
    together with his priests and officials.
The destroyer will sweep through every town;
    no town will escape.
The valleys will be ravaged;
    the plateaus will be destroyed,
        because the Lord has declared it so.
Give wings to Moab,
    and it would fly away[b]
        because its towns lie in ruins,
        with no one left in them.

10 Cursed is the one who is halfhearted
    in doing the Lord’s work.
Cursed is the one who restrains
    the sword from bloodshed.
11 From early on Moab has been at ease,
        like wine[c] left to settle on its sediment.
    It hasn’t been poured into jars;
        nor has Moab been taken into exile.
    Therefore, its taste is still pleasant,
        and its aroma is the same.

12 But the time is coming, declares the Lord, when I will send to him someone to spill it—to pour out his wine and to smash his jars. 13 And Moab will be put to shame on account of Chemosh, just as the people of Israel were put to shame on account of Bethel, in which they trusted.[d]

14 How can you claim,
    “We’re soldiers; we’re war heroes”?
15 Moab is doomed;
    its towns will surrender;[e]
    its elite forces will go down in defeat,
        declares the king whose name is the Lord of heavenly forces.
16 Moab’s destruction is near;
    its downfall approaches rapidly.
17 Grieve for this nation,
    you neighbors of Moab,
    all you who know his name.
Proclaim how its mighty scepter
    and magnificent staff are shattered!

18 Come down from your lofty place
        and sit in the dust,[f]
    you inhabitants of Daughter Dibon;[g]
        because Moab’s destroyer
        has arrived to level your fortresses.
19 Stand by the roads and watch,
    you inhabitants of Aroer.
Ask the men who flee
    and the women who run off,
        “What’s happened?”
20 Moab is shamed and shocked;
    weep and wail!
Tell it by the Arnon River:
    Moab’s been destroyed!

21 Judgment has come to the towns of the plateau—
        to Holon, Jahzah, and Mephaath,
22         to Dibon, Nebo, and Beth-diblathaim,
23         to Kiriathaim, Beth-gamul, and Beth-meon,
24         to Kerioth and Bozrah,
    to all the towns of Moab, far and near.

25 Moab’s horn is cut off;
    its arm is broken,
        declares the Lord.
26 Get Moab drunk,
    because it has exalted itself above the Lord.
Moab will collapse in its vomit
    and become the butt of every joke.
27 Wasn’t Israel the butt of your jokes?
    Didn’t you shake your head
        as if they were thieves
            caught in the act?
28 Leave your towns, head for the cliffs,
        you people of Moab.
Hide like a dove
    that nests in the mouth of a cave.

29 We have heard of Moab’s pride:
    arrogant, puffed up, exalted,
        high and mighty, boastful!
30 I myself know about its arrogance,
    declares the Lord,
        the idle talk, the empty deeds.
31 But I’ll still wail for Moab;
    I’ll cry out for all Moab;
        I’ll[h] sob for the people of Kir-heres.
32             I’ll weep for you, vine of Sibmah,
                more than I would for Jazer.
Though your branches extended to the sea
    and reached the coast of Jazer,
        now the destroyer has come
            to harvest your grapes and summer fruits.
33 Joy and gladness have been taken
    from the orchards and farms of Moab.
    I have stopped making wine in the presses.
    No one shouts with joy
        while treading the grapes.
Though there are shouts,
    they are not shouts of joy![i]
34 Screams are heard from Heshbon
    to Elealeh and Jahaz;
        their cries resound from Zoar
        to Horonaim and Eglath-shelishiyah.
Even the waters of Nimrim are dried up.
35     I’ll put an end to Moab,
        declares the Lord,
        for making offerings on the shrines,
            and worshipping their gods.

36 Therefore, my heart wails for Moab
        like a mournful[j] flute that plays the dirge;
    my heart wails for the people of Kir-heres,
        like a mournful flute.
        Their abundance is now gone.
37 Every head is shaved,
    every beard is cut off,
    every hand is slashed,
    and everyone wears mourning clothes.
38 On every housetop of Moab
    and in all its streets,
        there’s nothing but mourning.
I have shattered Moab
    like a pottery vessel no one wants,
        declares the Lord.
39 How it’s shattered! Go wail!
How Moab turns away!
    What shame!
Moab has become the butt of every joke,
    horrific to all its neighbors.

40 The Lord proclaims:
    Look! One who soars like an eagle
        and spreads its wings over Moab.
41 The towns will be captured;
    the strongholds will be seized.
On that day, the heart of every soldier from Moab
    will be like that of a woman in the throes of labor.
42 Moab will be destroyed once and for all
    because it has exalted itself above the Lord.

43 Terror, traps, and trackers[k]
    are upon you, people of Moab,
            declares the Lord.
44 Those who flee from terror
        will fall into a pit;
    those who escape the pit
        will be captured by the trap.
I will bring upon Moab
    the year of its punishment,
        declares the Lord.
45 In Heshbon tired refugees seek shelter.
    But fire is raging in Heshbon,
        flames from the house[l] of Sihon.
It has burned up part of Moab,
    including the leader of this rebellious nation.[m]
46 How terrible for you, Moab;
    the people of Chemosh have perished.
Your sons have been carried off;
    your daughters have been taken captive.
47 But in the days to come
    I’ll bring back Moab from captivity,
        declares the Lord.
    Such is the judgment on Moab.


  1. Jeremiah 48:6 Heb uncertain
  2. Jeremiah 48:9 Heb uncertain
  3. Jeremiah 48:11 Heb lacks like wine.
  4. Jeremiah 48:13 Or And Moab will be ashamed of Chemosh just as the people of Israel were ashamed of Bethel, in which they trusted.
  5. Jeremiah 48:15 Heb uncertain
  6. Jeremiah 48:18 Or thirst
  7. Jeremiah 48:18 Heb uncertain, or residing Daughter Dibon
  8. Jeremiah 48:31 Or He
  9. Jeremiah 48:33 Heb uncertain
  10. Jeremiah 48:36 Heb lacks mournful.
  11. Jeremiah 48:43 Or terror, pit, and trap
  12. Jeremiah 48:45 Heb manuscripts; MT from among
  13. Jeremiah 48:45 Heb uncertain
Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

Jeremiah 48 New International Version (NIV)

A Message About Moab

48 Concerning Moab:

This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says:

“Woe to Nebo, for it will be ruined.
    Kiriathaim will be disgraced and captured;
    the stronghold[a] will be disgraced and shattered.
Moab will be praised no more;
    in Heshbon[b] people will plot her downfall:
    ‘Come, let us put an end to that nation.’
You, the people of Madmen,[c] will also be silenced;
    the sword will pursue you.
Cries of anguish arise from Horonaim,
    cries of great havoc and destruction.
Moab will be broken;
    her little ones will cry out.[d]
They go up the hill to Luhith,
    weeping bitterly as they go;
on the road down to Horonaim
    anguished cries over the destruction are heard.
Flee! Run for your lives;
    become like a bush[e] in the desert.
Since you trust in your deeds and riches,
    you too will be taken captive,
and Chemosh will go into exile,
    together with his priests and officials.
The destroyer will come against every town,
    and not a town will escape.
The valley will be ruined
    and the plateau destroyed,
    because the Lord has spoken.
Put salt on Moab,
    for she will be laid waste[f];
her towns will become desolate,
    with no one to live in them.

10 “A curse on anyone who is lax in doing the Lord’s work!
    A curse on anyone who keeps their sword from bloodshed!

11 “Moab has been at rest from youth,
    like wine left on its dregs,
not poured from one jar to another—
    she has not gone into exile.
So she tastes as she did,
    and her aroma is unchanged.
12 But days are coming,”
    declares the Lord,
“when I will send men who pour from pitchers,
    and they will pour her out;
they will empty her pitchers
    and smash her jars.
13 Then Moab will be ashamed of Chemosh,
    as Israel was ashamed
    when they trusted in Bethel.

14 “How can you say, ‘We are warriors,
    men valiant in battle’?
15 Moab will be destroyed and her towns invaded;
    her finest young men will go down in the slaughter,
    declares the King, whose name is the Lord Almighty.
16 “The fall of Moab is at hand;
    her calamity will come quickly.
17 Mourn for her, all who live around her,
    all who know her fame;
say, ‘How broken is the mighty scepter,
    how broken the glorious staff!’

18 “Come down from your glory
    and sit on the parched ground,
    you inhabitants of Daughter Dibon,
for the one who destroys Moab
    will come up against you
    and ruin your fortified cities.
19 Stand by the road and watch,
    you who live in Aroer.
Ask the man fleeing and the woman escaping,
    ask them, ‘What has happened?’
20 Moab is disgraced, for she is shattered.
    Wail and cry out!
Announce by the Arnon
    that Moab is destroyed.
21 Judgment has come to the plateau
    to Holon, Jahzah and Mephaath,
22     to Dibon, Nebo and Beth Diblathaim,
23     to Kiriathaim, Beth Gamul and Beth Meon,
24     to Kerioth and Bozrah
    to all the towns of Moab, far and near.
25 Moab’s horn[g] is cut off;
    her arm is broken,”
declares the Lord.

26 “Make her drunk,
    for she has defied the Lord.
Let Moab wallow in her vomit;
    let her be an object of ridicule.
27 Was not Israel the object of your ridicule?
    Was she caught among thieves,
that you shake your head in scorn
    whenever you speak of her?
28 Abandon your towns and dwell among the rocks,
    you who live in Moab.
Be like a dove that makes its nest
    at the mouth of a cave.

29 “We have heard of Moab’s pride
    how great is her arrogance!—
of her insolence, her pride, her conceit
    and the haughtiness of her heart.
30 I know her insolence but it is futile,”
declares the Lord,
    “and her boasts accomplish nothing.
31 Therefore I wail over Moab,
    for all Moab I cry out,
    I moan for the people of Kir Hareseth.
32 I weep for you, as Jazer weeps,
    you vines of Sibmah.
Your branches spread as far as the sea[h];
    they reached as far as[i] Jazer.
The destroyer has fallen
    on your ripened fruit and grapes.
33 Joy and gladness are gone
    from the orchards and fields of Moab.
I have stopped the flow of wine from the presses;
    no one treads them with shouts of joy.
Although there are shouts,
    they are not shouts of joy.

34 “The sound of their cry rises
    from Heshbon to Elealeh and Jahaz,
from Zoar as far as Horonaim and Eglath Shelishiyah,
    for even the waters of Nimrim are dried up.
35 In Moab I will put an end
    to those who make offerings on the high places
    and burn incense to their gods,”
declares the Lord.
36 “So my heart laments for Moab like the music of a pipe;
    it laments like a pipe for the people of Kir Hareseth.
    The wealth they acquired is gone.
37 Every head is shaved
    and every beard cut off;
every hand is slashed
    and every waist is covered with sackcloth.
38 On all the roofs in Moab
    and in the public squares
there is nothing but mourning,
    for I have broken Moab
    like a jar that no one wants,”
declares the Lord.
39 “How shattered she is! How they wail!
    How Moab turns her back in shame!
Moab has become an object of ridicule,
    an object of horror to all those around her.”

40 This is what the Lord says:

“Look! An eagle is swooping down,
    spreading its wings over Moab.
41 Kerioth[j] will be captured
    and the strongholds taken.
In that day the hearts of Moab’s warriors
    will be like the heart of a woman in labor.
42 Moab will be destroyed as a nation
    because she defied the Lord.
43 Terror and pit and snare await you,
    you people of Moab,”
declares the Lord.
44 “Whoever flees from the terror
    will fall into a pit,
whoever climbs out of the pit
    will be caught in a snare;
for I will bring on Moab
    the year of her punishment,”
declares the Lord.

45 “In the shadow of Heshbon
    the fugitives stand helpless,
for a fire has gone out from Heshbon,
    a blaze from the midst of Sihon;
it burns the foreheads of Moab,
    the skulls of the noisy boasters.
46 Woe to you, Moab!
    The people of Chemosh are destroyed;
your sons are taken into exile
    and your daughters into captivity.

47 “Yet I will restore the fortunes of Moab
    in days to come,”
declares the Lord.

Here ends the judgment on Moab.


  1. Jeremiah 48:1 Or captured; / Misgab
  2. Jeremiah 48:2 The Hebrew for Heshbon sounds like the Hebrew for plot.
  3. Jeremiah 48:2 The name of the Moabite town Madmen sounds like the Hebrew for be silenced.
  4. Jeremiah 48:4 Hebrew; Septuagint / proclaim it to Zoar
  5. Jeremiah 48:6 Or like Aroer
  6. Jeremiah 48:9 Or Give wings to Moab, / for she will fly away
  7. Jeremiah 48:25 Horn here symbolizes strength.
  8. Jeremiah 48:32 Probably the Dead Sea
  9. Jeremiah 48:32 Two Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint; most Hebrew manuscripts as far as the Sea of
  10. Jeremiah 48:41 Or The cities
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Viewing of
Cross references