What is important to me first is to see what the text that is written seems to say in its sound, and then on reflection to hear and know what it means. I find meaning very slippery and very dangerous. Dangerous because the meaning accepted by some is an offence to others. We might at least hear what is said first, and disagree or protect our turf with texts after some reflection and with a little more information.
I do this to prove a point: translations require assumptions and guesses. If we are to be subject one to another, we should know it is not because of our own superior power to subjugate others with words.
There is something very lovely about the Jewish tradition of teaching, of which I know too little. They reason from the text to differing opinions. So let us have our differences as we must. But let us be clear that we are not on our own, the arbiter of another's data. Let the tension live. Yahweh's rage is contained when our ears are open to each other. I suppose that is one way of thinking. The consequences of our stubborn deafness are definitely appalling, whether Yahweh has anything to do with it in one's opinion or not.
You will note, of course that the heavens have been rolled up like a book (ספר), record, recounting... All we need to do is read about them from Newton to Einstein and ongoing. Altogether a remarkable revelation of awe and wonder from science, correctly so called.
This is not a comfortable chapter.
|קִרְב֤וּ גוֹיִם֙ לִשְׁמֹ֔עַ וּלְאֻמִּ֖ים הַקְשִׁ֑יבוּ |
תִּשְׁמַ֤ע הָאָ֙רֶץ֙ וּמְלֹאָ֔הּ תֵּבֵ֖ל וְכָל־צֶאֱצָאֶֽיהָ
|1||Come near nations to hear, and tribes attend. |
Let the land hear and and its fullness, the world and all emerging from it.
|כִּ֣י קֶ֤צֶף לַֽיהוָה֙ עַל־כָּל־הַגּוֹיִ֔ם וְחֵמָ֖ה עַל־כָּל־צְבָאָ֑ם |
הֶחֱרִימָ֖ם נְתָנָ֥ם לַטָּֽבַח
|2||B||For the rage of Yahweh is on all the nations, and heat over all their hosts, |
to utterly destroy them. He will give them to the slaughter.
|וְחַלְלֵיהֶ֣ם יֻשְׁלָ֔כוּ וּפִגְרֵיהֶ֖ם יַעֲלֶ֣ה בָאְשָׁ֑ם |
וְנָמַ֥סּוּ הָרִ֖ים מִדָּמָֽם
|3||And their profaned will be cast down and their carcasses, their stink will ascend, |
and the hills will be molten from their blood.
|וְנָמַ֙קּוּ֙ כָּל־צְבָ֣א הַשָּׁמַ֔יִם וְנָגֹ֥לּוּ כַסֵּ֖פֶר הַשָּׁמָ֑יִם |
וְכָל־צְבָאָ֣ם יִבּ֔וֹל כִּנְבֹ֤ל עָלֶה֙ מִגֶּ֔פֶן וּכְנֹבֶ֖לֶת מִתְּאֵנָֽה
|4||And all the host of the heavens will rot. The heavens will be rolled up like a book, |
and all their hosts will wither as a leaf from the vine withers and as the withering a fig tree.
|כִּֽי־רִוְּתָ֥ה בַשָּׁמַ֖יִם חַרְבִּ֑י |
הִנֵּה֙ עַל־אֱד֣וֹם תֵּרֵ֔ד וְעַל־עַ֥ם חֶרְמִ֖י לְמִשְׁפָּֽט
|5||For saturated in the heavens is my sword. |
Behold on Edom it descends, and over the people of my ban for lessons in judgment.
|חֶ֣רֶב לַיהוָ֞ה מָלְאָ֥ה דָם֙ הֻדַּ֣שְׁנָה מֵחֵ֔לֶב מִדַּ֤ם כָּרִים֙ וְעַתּוּדִ֔ים מֵחֵ֖לֶב כִּלְי֣וֹת אֵילִ֑ים |
כִּ֣י זֶ֤בַח לַֽיהוָה֙ בְּבָצְרָ֔ה וְטֶ֥בַח גָּד֖וֹל בְּאֶ֥רֶץ אֱדֽוֹם
|6||B||The sword of Yahweh is full of blood, fattened from the choicest with the blood of butting lambs and goats, from the choicest of the kidneys of rams, |
for an offering to Yahweh is in the enclosure [Bozrah], and great slaughter in the land of Edom.
|וְיָרְד֤וּ רְאֵמִים֙ עִמָּ֔ם וּפָרִ֖ים עִם־אַבִּירִ֑ים |
וְרִוְּתָ֤ה אַרְצָם֙ מִדָּ֔ם וַעֲפָרָ֖ם מֵחֵ֥לֶב יְדֻשָּֽׁן
|7||And wild bulls will come down with them, and young bulls with the mighty, |
and their land will be saturated with blood and their dust from the choicest will be fattened,
|כִּ֛י י֥וֹם נָקָ֖ם לַֽיהוָ֑ה |
שְׁנַ֥ת שִׁלּוּמִ֖ים לְרִ֥יב צִיּֽוֹן
|8||d||For a day of the vengeance of Yahweh, |
a year of repayment for the contention of Zion.
|וְנֶהֶפְכ֤וּ נְחָלֶ֙יהָ֙ לְזֶ֔פֶת וַעֲפָרָ֖הּ לְגָפְרִ֑ית |
וְהָיְתָ֣ה אַרְצָ֔הּ לְזֶ֖פֶת בֹּעֵרָֽה
|9||And her torrents will be changed to tar and her dust to pitch, |
and her land will be for tar kindled.
|לַ֤יְלָה וְיוֹמָם֙ לֹ֣א תִכְבֶּ֔ה לְעוֹלָ֖ם יַעֲלֶ֣ה עֲשָׁנָ֑הּ |
מִדּ֤וֹר לָדוֹר֙ תֶּחֱרָ֔ב לְנֵ֣צַח נְצָחִ֔ים אֵ֥ין עֹבֵ֖ר בָּֽהּ
|10||C||Night and day not quenched, forever her smoke will ascend. |
From generation to generation, deserted, in perpetual perpetuity, none will pass through her.
|וִירֵשׁ֙וּהָ֙ קָאַ֣ת וְקִפּ֔וֹד וְיַנְשׁ֥וֹף וְעֹרֵ֖ב יִשְׁכְּנוּ־בָ֑הּ |
וְנָטָ֥ה עָלֶ֛יהָ קַֽו־תֹ֖הוּ וְאַבְנֵי־בֹֽהוּ
|11||And unclean bird and porcupine and barn owl will possess her, and raven will dwell in her, |
and he will stretch out on her a line of disorder and stones of the void.
|חֹרֶ֥יהָ וְאֵֽין־שָׁ֖ם מְלוּכָ֣ה יִקְרָ֑אוּ |
וְכָל־שָׂרֶ֖יהָ יִ֥הְיוּ אָֽפֶס
|12||Her freeborn, (but none is there) her royalty will proclaim, |
and all her nobility will be terminated.
|וְעָלְתָ֤ה אַרְמְנֹתֶ֙יהָ֙ סִירִ֔ים קִמּ֥וֹשׂ וָח֖וֹחַ בְּמִבְצָרֶ֑יהָ |
וְהָיְתָה֙ נְוֵ֣ה תַנִּ֔ים חָצִ֖יר לִבְנ֥וֹת יַעֲנָֽה
|13||And prickles will come up in her citadels, stinging nettle and thorns in her enclosures, |
and she will be the home of dragons, grass to the daughters of an ostrich.
|וּפָגְשׁ֤וּ צִיִּים֙ אֶת־אִיִּ֔ים וְשָׂעִ֖יר עַל־רֵעֵ֣הוּ יִקְרָ֑א |
אַךְ־שָׁם֙ הִרְגִּ֣יעָה לִּילִ֔ית וּמָצְאָ֥ה לָ֖הּ מָנֽוֹחַ
|14||And wild places will meet coasts, and kid against its associate will call. |
Surely there is the uneasy Lilith, but she will find rest in her.
|שָׁ֣מָּה קִנְּנָ֤ה קִפּוֹז֙ וַתְּמַלֵּ֔ט וּבָקְעָ֖ה וְדָגְרָ֣ה בְצִלָּ֑הּ |
אַךְ־שָׁ֛ם נִקְבְּצ֥וּ דַיּ֖וֹת אִשָּׁ֥ה רְעוּתָֽהּ
|15||B||There is her nest, great owl, and she will lay and hatch and foment in her shadow. |
Surely there kites are collected, each with her associate.
|דִּרְשׁ֨וּ מֵֽעַל־סֵ֤פֶר יְהוָה֙ וּֽקְרָ֔אוּ אַחַ֤ת מֵהֵ֙נָּה֙ לֹ֣א נֶעְדָּ֔רָה אִשָּׁ֥ה רְעוּתָ֖הּ לֹ֣א פָקָ֑דוּ |
כִּֽי־פִי֙ ה֣וּא צִוָּ֔ה וְרוּח֖וֹ ה֥וּא קִבְּצָֽן
|16||Search out from the record of Yahweh and recite. Not one from them will lag, each her associate will not visit, |
for my mouth has commanded it, and its spirit, itself, collects.
|וְהֽוּא־הִפִּ֤יל לָהֶן֙ גּוֹרָ֔ל וְיָד֛וֹ חִלְּקַ֥תָּה לָהֶ֖ם בַּקָּ֑ו |
עַד־עוֹלָם֙ יִֽירָשׁ֔וּהָ לְד֥וֹר וָד֖וֹר יִשְׁכְּנוּ־בָֽהּ
|17||And he has let fall for them the lot, and his hand has divided for them by line. |
For evermore they will possess her, from generation to generation, they will dwell in her.