Jeremiah 46
Contemporary English Version

The Lord Speaks to Jeremiah about the Nations

1The Lord often told me what to say about the different nations of the world.

What the Lord Says about Egypt

2 In the fourth year that Jehoiakim+ was king of Judah, King Nebuchadnezzar+ of Babylonia defeated King Neco of Egypt+ in a battle at the city of Carchemish near the Euphrates River. And here is what the Lord told me to say about the Egyptian army:

3It's time to go into battle!

So grab your shields,

4saddle your horses,

and polish your spears.

Put on your helmets and armor,

then take your positions.

5I can see the battle now—

you are defeated

and running away,

never once looking back.

Terror is all around.

6You are strong and run fast,

but you can't escape.

You fall in battle

near the Euphrates River.

7What nation is this,

that rises like the Nile River

overflowing its banks?

8It is Egypt, rising with a roar

like a raging river

and saying,

“I'll flood the earth,

destroying cities, and killing

everyone in them.”

9Go ahead, Egypt.

Tell your chariots and cavalry

to attack and fight hard.

Order your troops to march out,

with Ethiopians+ and Libyans

carrying shields,

and the Lydians+ armed with bows

and arrows.

10But the Lord All-Powerful

will win this battle

and take revenge

on his enemies.

His sword will eat them

and drink their blood

until it is full.

They will be killed in the north

near the Euphrates River,

as a sacrifice to the Lord.

11Egypt, no medicine can heal you,

not even the soothing lotion

from Gilead.

12All nations have heard you weep;

you are disgraced,

and they know it.

Your troops fall to the ground,

stumbling over each other.

A Warning for Egypt

13-14 When King Nebuchadnezzar+ of Babylonia was on his way to attack Egypt, the Lord sent me with a warning for every Egyptian town, but especially for Migdol, Memphis, and Tahpanhes. He said to tell them:

Prepare to defend yourselves!

Everywhere in your nation,

people are dying in war.

15I have struck down

your mighty god Apis+

and chased him away.+

16Your soldiers stumble

over each other

and say, “Get up!

The enemy will kill us,

unless we can escape

to our own land.”

17Give the king of Egypt

this new name,


18Egypt, I am the true king,

the Lord All-Powerful,

and as surely as I live,

those enemies who attack

will tower over you

like Mount Tabor among the hills

or Mount Carmel by the sea.

19You will be led away captive,

so pack a few things

to bring with you.

Your capital, Memphis,

will lie empty and in ruins.

20An enemy from the north

will attack you, beautiful Egypt,

like a fly biting a cow.

21The foreign soldiers you hired

will turn and run.

But they are doomed,

like well-fed calves

being led to the butcher.

* 22The enemy army will go forward

like a swarm of locusts.+

Your troops will feel helpless,

like a snake in a forest

23when men with axes

start chopping down trees.

It can only hiss

and try to escape.

24Your people will be disgraced

and captured by the enemy

from the north.

25I am the Lord All-Powerful, the God of Israel. Soon I will punish the god Amon of Thebes+ and the other Egyptian gods, the Egyptian kings, the people of Egypt, and everyone who trusts in the Egyptian power. 26I will hand them over to King Nebuchadnezzar and his army. But I also promise that Egypt will someday have people living here again, just as it had before. I, the Lord, have spoken.

The Lord Will Bring Israel Home

The Lord said:

27 Israel,+ don't be afraid.

Someday I will bring you home

from foreign lands.

You and your descendants

will live in peace and safety,

with nothing to fear.

28So don't be afraid,

even though now

you deserve to be punished

and have been scattered

among other nations.

But when I destroy them,

I will protect you.

I, the Lord, have spoken.


46.2 Jehoiakim: See the note at 1.3.
46.2 King Nebuchadnezzar: Ruled 605–562 b.c. At the time of the battle in 605 b.c., he was crown prince, but his father died a few months later, and he became king.
46.2 King Neco of Egypt: Neco II, ruled 609–594 b.c.
46.9 Ethiopians: See the note at 38.7,8.
46.9 Lydians: Probably hired soldiers from Lydia, an area in west-central Asia minor.
46.13,14 Nebuchadnezzar: See the note at 21.2.
46.15 Apis: A sacred bull, kept in a temple at Memphis, Egypt, and worshiped as a god.
46.15 I have … him away: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
46.22 locusts: A type of grasshopper that comes in swarms and causes great damage to plant life.
46.25 the god Amon of Thebes: Amon was the king of the Egyptian gods and was the special god of the Egyptian kings.
46.27 Israel: See the note at 30.10.

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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