Against Edom (Mal 1:3-1:5)

“‘But I have hated Esau.

I have made

His hill country

A desolation.

I have made

His heritage

A desert for jackals.’

If Edom says.

‘We are shattered,

But we will rebuild the ruins.’

Yahweh of hosts says.

‘They may build,

But I will tear down,

Until they are called

The wicked country.

Yahweh is angry forever

With those people.’

Your own eyes shall see this.

You shall say.

‘Great is Yahweh,

Beyond the border of Israel!’”

Edom was considered the land where Esau had settled.  Thus, Yahweh hated Edom.  He had made their hill country a desolation.  Their heritage was like a desert of wild jackals.  Even if they wanted to rebuild their ruins, Yahweh would tear it down, because they were a wicked country.  Yahweh was angry with them forever.  Their own eyes had seen that Yahweh was great, even beyond the borders of Israel.

The destruction of the city (Zeph 2:15-2:15)

“Is this the exultant city?

It lived secure.

It said to itself.

‘I am!

There is no one else.’

What a desolation!

It has become

A lair

For wild animals.

Everyone who passes by her

Hisses.

They shake their fists.”

Next Yahweh, via Zephaniah, took on the main exultant city itself, Nineveh.  They thought that they were secure in that city.  They believed that they there was no one like it.  Now it has become a desolation, a home for wild animals.  Everyone who goes by it now derides it by hissing and shaking their fists at this once great city.

They example of northern Israel (Mic 6:16-6:16)

“You have kept

The statutes of Omri.

You have kept

All the works

Of the house of Ahab.

You have followed

Their counsels.

Therefore,

I will make you

A desolation.

I will make your inhabitants

An object of hissing.

Thus,

You shall bear

The scorn of my people.”

The statutes of King Omri (885-874 BCE) and King Ahab (874-853 BCE), the kings of northern Israel, favored the Baal worship and various injustices in Samaria.  They had followed the bad counsels of these northern kings of Israel.  Thus, Yahweh was going to make them a desolation.  The people of the north would become an object of hissing, as they bore the scorn of Yahweh’s people.

Mount Seir will be ruined (Ezek 35:3-35:4)

“Say to it!

Thus says Yahweh God!

‘I am against you!

Mount Seir!

I will stretch out

My hand

Against you.

I will make you

a desolation.

I will make you

A waste.

I will lay

Your towns

In ruins.

You shall become

A desolation.

You shall know

That I am Yahweh.’”

Yahweh told Ezekiel to be against Mount Seir, that is Edom. Yahweh was going to stretch out his hand against Mount Seir. He was going to make it a desolation and a waste, leaving its towns in ruins. Finally, they too would know that Yahweh was God.

The desolation of Egypt (Ezek 29:8-29:10)

“Therefore,

Thus says Yahweh God!

I will bring

A sword

Upon you.

I will cut off

From you

Human beings

With animals.

The land of Egypt

Shall be

A desolation

It shall be

A waste.

Then they will know

That I am Yahweh.

Because you said.

‘The Nile is mine.

I made it.’

Therefore,

I am against you.

I am against your channels.

I will make the land

Of Egypt

An utter waste,

A desolation,

From Migdol

To Syene,

As far as the border

Of Ethiopia.”

Yahweh God said that he was going to bring a sword against Pharaoh and his allies. He was going to cut them off from all human beings and animals. The land of Egypt would be a desolation and a waste. Then they would know that Yahweh was God. Because they had said that the Nile River was his and he had made it, Yahweh was going to be against the Egyptian sea dragon Pharaoh of the Nile River with all its Delta channels. He was going to make the land of Egypt an utter waste, a desolation, from the northern town of Migdol to the southern town of Syene, near the Ethiopian border.

Flee Moab (Jer 48:6-48:9)

“Flee!

Save yourselves!

Be like a wild ass

In the desert!

Because you trusted

In your strongholds,

With your treasures,

You also shall be taken.

Chemosh shall

Go out into exile,

With his priests,

With his attendants.

The destroyer shall come

Upon every town.

No town shall escape.

The valley shall perish.

The plain shall be destroyed.

As Yahweh has spoken.

Set aside salt for Moab.

She will surely fall.

Her towns shall become

A desolation,

With no inhabitants in them.”

Jeremiah warns the Moabites to flee and save themselves. They should take off like a wild donkey in the desert. They had trusted in their treasures and fortresses, but to no avail. The local god of Moab, Chemosh, was going to be exiled along with his priests and attendants. Every town would be destroyed, since none would escape. Both the valleys and the plains would be destroyed. All the towns of Moab would fall and become a desolation with nobody living in them. Prepare some salt for Moab to help with her wounds.

Jerusalem and Judah (Jer 25:18-25:18)

“I went to Jerusalem.

I went to

The towns of Judah,

Its kings,

Its officials,

To make them

A desolation,

A waste,

An object of hissing,

An object of cursing,

As they are today.”

Jeremiah was obviously sent to Jerusalem and the towns of Judah with their kings and officials. There is no mention of how many towns in Judah, but usually that is a euphemism for its leaders. They were going to be laid waste like a desolation. They would become the object of hissing and cursing just as they are today. This seems to imply that the exile was actually taking place at this time.