Against Edom (Lam 4:21-4:21)



Be glad!

O daughter Edom!

You live

In the land of Uz!

But to you also

The cup shall pass!

You shall

Become drunk!

You shall

Strip yourself bare!”

This poem ends with a swipe at Judah’s southern neighbor Edom. With an ironic twist, this author told Edom to rejoice and be glad because they lived in Uz, the place where Job lived. However, there was a warning that the cup of anger would pass to them. They would become drunk and naked. This verse starts with the Hebrew consonant letter Shin in this acrostic poem.

Uz (Jer 25:20-25:20)

“I went to

All the mixed people,

All the kings

Of the land of Uz.”

Next up on Jeremiah’s world tour was the land Uz, where Job lived. Exactly where Uz was seems difficult to ascertain. Uz was probably in Edom, south of Israel, in northern Arabia or southern Jordan. In Genesis, chapter 10, Uz was the first born son of Abram, whose father was Shem, who in turn had Noah as his father. Thus Uz was the great grandson of Noah. There also was a place in southern Syria with this name. Uz was the first born of Nahor and Milcah, the brother of Abraham in Genesis, chapter 22. Thus this country of Uz could have been named after any of these people so that it was a mixed people with some Israelites.

The descendents of Shem (1 Chr 1:17-1:17)

“The descendents of Shem were Elam, Asshur, Arpachshad, Lud, Aram, Uz, Hul, Gether, and Meshech.”

Once again, this is based on Genesis, chapter 10. Shem was the oldest son of Noah, the favorite of the biblical authors. The descendents of Shem will become the Semites. Some believe that the word Semite comes from his name Shem. Shem had five sons in Genesis, chapter 10. (1) Elam had a powerful territory in lower Mesopotamia named after him. (2) Asshur was the name of the first capital of Assyria. (3) The Arpachshad lineage became the most important. (4) Lud was supposedly the ancestor of Lydia. There are other people named (5) Aram in the biblical literature. Perhaps this Aram gave the name to the territory northeast of Palestine that became Syria and the people there known as Arameans. There is no mention of the descendents of Elam, Asshur, and Lud. In Genesis, chapter 10, (1) Uz, (2) Hul, (3) Gether, and (4) Meshech are the sons of Aram, but in the biblical literature they only mentioned in the genealogies here and in Genesis, chapter 10. However, Uz was a common name. There was an area called Uz in southern Syria, where Job is said to come from. Hul may be a town in northern Canaan. No one can seem to trace Gether. Meshech, sometimes called Mash, is the same name as the 6th son of Japheth.