Accessibility setting


Select language

Skip to secondary menu

Skip to table of contents

Skip to content

Jehovah’s Witnesses


Online Bible


Jeremiah 51:1-64

51  This is what Jehovah has said: “Here I am rousing up against Babylon+ and against the inhabitants of Leb-ka′mai* a ruinous wind;+  and I will send to Babylon winnowers who will certainly winnow her and who will make her land empty;+ for they will actually prove to be against her on all sides in the day of calamity.+  “Let the one treading his bow do no treading.+ And let no one raise himself up in his coat of mail. “And do not YOU men show any compassion for her young men.+ Devote to destruction all her army.+  And they must fall slain in the land of the Chal·de′ans+ and pierced through in her streets.+  “For Israel and Judah+ are not widowed from their God,* from Jehovah of armies.+ For the land of those has been full of guilt from the standpoint of the Holy One of Israel.+  “FLEE out of the midst of Babylon,+ and provide escape each one for his own soul.+ Do not be rendered inanimate* through her error.+ For it is the time of vengeance belonging to Jehovah.+ There is treatment that he is paying back to her.+  Babylon has been a golden cup in the hand of Jehovah,+ she* making all the earth drunk.+ From her* wine the nations have drunk.+ That is why the nations keep acting crazed.+  Suddenly Babylon has fallen, so that she is broken.+ Howl over her, YOU people.+ Take balsam for her pain.+ Perhaps she may be healed.”  “We would have healed Babylon, but she has not been healed. Leave her, YOU people,+ and let us go each one to his own land.+ For clear to the heavens her judgment has reached, and it has been lifted up to the cloudy skies.+ 10  Jehovah has brought forth deeds of righteousness for us.+ Come and do let us recount in Zion the work of Jehovah our God.”+ 11  “Polish the arrows.+ Fill the circular shields, O men. Jehovah has aroused the spirit of the kings of the Medes,+ because it is against Babylon that his idea is,+ in order to bring her to ruin. For it is the vengeance of Jehovah, the vengeance for his temple.+ 12  Against the walls of Babylon lift up a signal.*+ Make strong the watch.*+ Post the watchmen.* Make ready those lying in ambush.+ For Jehovah both has formed the idea and will certainly do what he has spoken against the inhabitants of Babylon.”+ 13  “O woman residing on abounding waters,+ abundant in treasures,+ your end has come, the measure+ of your profit making.+ 14  Jehovah of armies has sworn by his own soul,*+ ‘I will fill you with men,* like the locusts,*+ and they will certainly sing forth over you a shout.’+ 15  He is the Maker of the earth by his power,+ the One firmly establishing the productive land*+ by his wisdom,+ and the One who by his understanding+ stretched out the heavens.+ 16  At [his] voice there is a giving by him of a turmoil of waters in the heavens, and he causes vapors* to ascend from the extremity* of the earth.+ He has made even sluices* for the rain,+ and he brings forth the wind* from his storehouses. 17  Every man has behaved so unreasoningly as not to know.+ Every metalworker will feel ashamed because of the carved image;+ for his molten image is a falsehood,+ and there is no spirit* in them.+ 18  They are vanity,*+ a work of mockery.+ In the time of their being given attention they will perish.+ 19  “The Share of Jacob is not like these things,+ for he is the Former of everything,+ even the staff* of his inheritance.+ Jehovah of armies is his name.+ 20  “You are a club for me, as weapons of war,+ and by you I shall certainly dash nations to pieces, and by you I will bring kingdoms to ruin. 21  And by you I will dash the horse and his rider to pieces, and by you I will dash the war chariot and its rider to pieces.+ 22  And by you I will dash man and woman to pieces, and by you I will dash old man and boy to pieces, and by you I will dash young man and virgin to pieces. 23  And by you I will dash shepherd and his drove to pieces, and by you I will dash farmer and his span [of animals] to pieces, and by you I will dash governors and deputy rulers to pieces. 24  And I will pay back to Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chal·de′a* all their badness that they have committed in Zion before the eyes of YOU people,”+ is the utterance of Jehovah. 25  “Here I am against you,+ O ruinous mountain,”+ is the utterance of Jehovah, “you ruiner of the whole earth;+ and I will stretch out my hand against you and roll you away from the crags and make you a burnt-out mountain.”+ 26  “And people will not take from you a stone for a corner or a stone for foundations,+ because desolate wastes to time indefinite are what you will become,”+ is the utterance of Jehovah. 27  “Lift up a signal* in the land, O men.+ Blow a horn* among the nations. Sanctify+ against her the nations. Summon against her the kingdoms of Ar′a·rat,+ Min′ni and Ash′ke·naz.+ Commission against her a recruiting officer. Make the horses+ come up like bristly locusts.* 28  Sanctify against her the nations, the kings of Me′di·a,+ its governors and all its deputy rulers and all the land of each one’s* dominion. 29  And let the earth rock and be in severe pain,+ for against Babylon the thoughts of Jehovah have risen up to make the land of Babylon an object of astonishment, without an inhabitant.+ 30  “The mighty men of Babylon have ceased to fight. They have kept sitting in the strong places. Their mightiness has run dry.+ They have become women.+ Her residences have been set* on fire. Her bars have been broken.+ 31  “One runner runs to meet another runner, and one reporter to meet another reporter,+ to report to the king of Babylon that his city has been captured at every end,*+ 32  and that the fords themselves have been seized,+ and the papyrus boats* they have burned with fire, and the men of war themselves have become disturbed.”+ 33  For this is what Jehovah of armies, the God of Israel, has said: “The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing floor.+ It is the time to tread her down solid. Yet a little while and the time of the harvest must come for her.”+ 34  “Neb·u·chad·rez′zar the king of Babylon has eaten me up;+ he has thrown me into confusion. He has set me as an empty vessel. He has swallowed me down like a big snake;*+ he has filled his abdomen with my pleasant things. He has rinsed me* away. 35  ‘The violence done to me and [to] my organism be upon Babylon!’ the inhabitress of Zion will say.+ ‘And my blood be upon the inhabitants of Chal·de′a!’ Jerusalem will say.”+ 36  Therefore this is what Jehovah has said: “Here I am conducting your* legal case,+ and I shall certainly execute vengeance for you.+ And I will dry up her sea, and I will make her wells dry.+ 37  And Babylon must become piles of stones,+ the lair of jackals,+ an object of astonishment and something to whistle at, without an inhabitant.+ 38  All together they will roar just like maned young lions. They will certainly growl like the whelps of lions.” 39  “When they are heated I shall set their banquets and I will make them drunk, in order that they may exult;*+ and they must sleep an indefinitely lasting sleep,* from which they will not wake up,”+ is the utterance of Jehovah. 40  “I shall bring them down like male sheep to the slaughtering, like rams along with the he-goats.”+ 41  “O how She′shach* has been captured,+ and how the Praise of the whole earth gets to be seized!+ How Babylon has become a mere object of astonishment among the nations!+ 42  The sea has come up even over Babylon. By the multitude of its waves she has been covered.+ 43  Her cities have become an object of astonishment, a waterless land and a desert plain.+ As a land, in them* no man* will dwell, and through them no son of mankind* will pass.+ 44  And I will turn my attention upon Bel*+ in Babylon, and I will bring forth out of his mouth what he has swallowed.+ And to him nations will stream no more.+ Also, the wall itself of Babylon must fall.+ 45  “Get out of the midst of her, O my people,+ and provide each one his soul with escape+ from the burning anger of Jehovah.+ 46  Or otherwise YOUR heart will be timid,+ and YOU will become afraid because of the report that is to be heard in the land. And in one year the report will actually come, and after it in another year there will be the report and violence in the earth and ruler against ruler. 47  Therefore, look! there are days coming, and I will turn my attention upon the graven images of Babylon;+ and all her own land will become ashamed, and all her own slain ones will fall in the midst of her.+ 48  “And over Babylon the heavens and the earth and all that is in them will certainly cry out joyfully,+ for out of the north there will come to her the despoilers,”+ is the utterance of Jehovah. 49  “Not only was Babylon the cause for the slain ones of Israel to fall+ but also at Babylon the slain ones of all the earth have fallen.+ 50  “YOU escapees from the sword, keep going. Do not stand still.+ From far away remember Jehovah,+ and may Jerusalem herself come up into YOUR heart.”+ 51  “We have been put to shame,+ for we have heard reproach.+ Humiliation has covered our faces,+ for strangers have come against the holy places of the house of Jehovah.”+ 52  “Therefore, look! there are days coming,” is the utterance of Jehovah, “and I will turn my attention upon her graven images,+ and throughout all her land the pierced one will groan.”+ 53  “Even if Babylon should ascend to the heavens+ and even if she should make the height of her strength unapproachable,+ from me the despoilers will come to her,”+ is the utterance of Jehovah. 54  “Listen! There is an outcry from Babylon,+ and a great crash from the land of the Chal·de′ans,+ 55  for Jehovah is despoiling Babylon, and he will certainly destroy out of her the great voice,+ and their waves will actually be boisterous like many waters.+ The noise of their voice will certainly be given out. 56  For there must come upon her, upon Babylon, the despoiler,+ and her mighty men will certainly be captured.+ Their bows must be shattered,+ for Jehovah is a God of recompenses.+ Without fail he will repay.+ 57  And I will make her princes and her wise ones, her governors and her deputy rulers and her mighty men drunk,+ and they must sleep an indefinitely lasting sleep,* from which they will not wake up,”+ is the utterance of the King,+ whose name is Jehovah of armies.+ 58  This is what Jehovah of armies has said: “The wall of Babylon, although broad, will without fail be demolished;*+ and her gates, although high, will be set aflame with fire.+ And the peoples will have to toil for simply nothing,+ and national groups simply for the fire;+ and they will just tire themselves out.” 59  The word that Jeremiah the prophet commanded Se·rai′ah the son of Ne·ri′ah+ the son of Mah·sei′ah+ when he went with* Zed·e·ki′ah the king of Judah to Babylon in the fourth year of his being king; and Se·rai′ah was the quartermaster.* 60  And Jeremiah proceeded to write in one book+ all the calamity that would come upon Babylon, even all these words written against Babylon. 61  Furthermore, Jeremiah said to Se·rai′ah: “As soon as you come to Babylon and actually see [her], you must also read aloud all these words.+ 62  And you must say, ‘O Jehovah, you yourself have spoken against this place, in order to cut it off so that there may come to be in it no inhabitant,+ either man* or even domestic animal, but that she may become mere desolate wastes to time indefinite.’ 63  And it must occur that when you will have completed reading this book, you will tie to it a stone, and you must pitch it into the midst of the Eu·phra′tes.+ 64  And you must say, ‘This is how Babylon will sink down and never rise up because of the calamity that I am bringing in upon her;+ and they will certainly tire themselves out.’”+ Down to this point are the words of Jeremiah.


“Leb-kamai.” Heb., Lev qa·mai′, meaning “The Heart of Those Rising Up Against Me.” This appears to be a cryptographic name for Chaldea (Kas·dim′), by the device called ʼath·bash′. T, “the land of the Chaldeans”; LXX, “the Chaldeans.” See 25:26 ftn.
Lit., “a widower from his God.”
Or, “silent.”
Or, “it,” fem., referring to the “cup.”
Or, “its.”
“Signal.” Heb., nes.
Or, “guard.”
Or, “guards.”
“By his own soul.” Heb., benaph·shoh′; Lat., per a′ni·mam su′am; LXX, “by his arm.” See App 4A.
“Men.” Heb., ʼa·dham′.
Or, “creeping, unwinged locusts.” See Joe 1:4 ftn.
“Productive land.” Heb., te·vel′; LXX, “inhabited earth”; Lat., or′bem, “circle,” that is, of the earth.
Or, “vaporous clouds.”
See 25:31, 33 ftns.
See 10:13 ftn, “Sluices.”
“Wind.” Heb., ru′ach; Lat., ven′tum; Gr., phos, “light.”
Or, “breath.” Heb., ru′ach; Gr., pneu′ma; Lat., spi′ri·tus.
Or, “an exhalation.”
Or, “even the tribe.” Heb., weshe′vet.
“Chaldea,” Vg; T, “land of the Chaldeans”; MLXXSy, “Chaldeans.”
“Signal.” Heb., nes.
Or, “shofar.”
“Bristly locusts.” Or, “bristly, creeping, unwinged locusts.” See Joe 1:4 ftn.
Lit., “his.”
Lit., “they (people) have set.”
Lit., “from an end.”
“Papyrus boats,” by a slight correction; M, “swamp reeds; reedy pools.”
Or, “a dragon.”
“Me,” MmarginTSyVg.
“Your,” fem. sing., referring to “Zion,” or “Jerusalem.”
“Swoon away,” by a correction; T, “not be strong”; LXX, “be stupefied (stunned)”; Vg, “slumber.”
“They may die the second death,” T.
“Babel,” T. See 25:26 ftn.
“Them,” fem., referring to “cities.”
“Man.” Heb., ʼish.
Or, “son of men.” Heb., ben-ʼa·dham′.
“Bel,” MSyVg; T, “the worshipers (servants) of Bel.”
“And they will die the second death,” T.
Or, “laid bare.”
“With,” MSyVg; T, “in the legation of”; LXX, “from.”
Lit., “prince of the resting-place.” Heb., sar menu·chah′.
Lit., “from man.” Heb., leme·ʼa·dham′.