An oracle against Damascus: Look, Damascus is no longer a city. It has become a ruined heap.
The cities of Aroer are forsaken; they will be [places] for flocks. They will lie down without fear.
The fortress disappears from Ephraim, and a kingdom from Damascus. The remnant of Aram will be like the splendor of the Israelites. [This is] the declaration of the LORD of Hosts.
On that day the splendor of Jacob will fade, and his healthy body will become emaciated.
It will be as if a reaper had gathered standing grain-- his arm harvesting the heads of grain-- and as if one had gleaned heads of grain in the valley of Rephaim.
Only gleanings will be left in Israel, as if an olive tree had been beaten-- two or three berries at the very top of the tree, four or five on its fruitful branches. [This is] the declaration of the LORD, the God of Israel.
On that day people will look to their Maker and will turn their eyes to the Holy One of Israel.
They will not look to the altars they made with their hands or to the Asherahs and incense altars they made with their fingers.
On that day their strong cities will be like the abandoned woods and mountaintops that were abandoned because of the Israelites; there will be desolation.
For you have forgotten the God of your salvation, and you have failed to remember the rock of your strength; therefore you will plant beautiful plants and set out cuttings from exotic vines.
On the day that you plant, you will help them to grow, and in the morning you will help your seed to sprout, [but] the harvest will vanish on the day of disease and incurable pain.
Ah! The roar of many peoples-- they roar like the roaring of the seas. The raging of the nations-- they rage like the raging of mighty waters.
The nations rage like the raging of many waters. He rebukes them, and they flee far away, driven before the wind like chaff on the hills and like dead thistles before a gale.
In the evening-- sudden terror! Before morning-- it is gone! This is the fate of those who plunder us and the lot of those who ravage us.