¶ Woe be unto you that make unrighteous laws, and devise things, which be too hard for to keep: wherethorow the poor are oppressed, on every side, and the innocents of my people are therewith robbed of judgement: that widows may be your prey, and that ye may rob the fatherless. What will ye do in time of the visitation and destruction, that shall come from far? To whom will ye run for help? Or to whom will ye give your honour, that he may keep it? That ye come not among the prisoners, or lie among the dead? After all this shall not the wrath of the Lord cease, but yet shall his hand be stretched out still.
¶ Woe be also unto Assur, which is a staff of my wrath, in whose hand is the rod of my punishment. For I shall send him among those hypocritical people, among the people that have deserved my disfavour shall I send him: that he may utterly rob them, spoil them, and tread them down like the mire in the street. Howbeit, his meaning is not so, neither thinketh his heart of this fashion. But he imagineth only, how he may overthrow and destroy much people, for he sayeth: Are not my princes all kings? Is not Calno as easy to win, as Charchamis? Is it harder to conquer Antiochia then Arphad? or is it lighter to overcome Damascus then Samaria? As who say: I were able to win the kingdom of the Idolaters and their gods, but not Ierusalem and Samaria. Shall I not do unto Ierusalem and their Images, as I did unto Samaria and their Images? Wherefore the Lord sayeth: As soon as I have performed my whole work upon the hill of Sion and Ierusalem, then will I also visit the noble and stout king of Assiria, with his wisdom and pride. For he stondeth thus in his own conceit: This do I, thorow the power of my own hand, and thorow my wisdom: For I am wise, I am he that remove the lands of the people, I rob their princes: and (like one of the worthies) I drive them from their high seats. My hand hath found out the Hosts of the people, as it were a nest. And like as eggs, that were laid here and there, are gathered together: So do I gather all countries. And there is no man, that dare be so bold, as to touch a feather, that dare open his mouth, or once whisper. But doth the axe boost itself, against him that heweth therewith? or doth the saw make any cracking, against him that ruleth it? That were even like, as if the rod did exalt itself against him that beareth it: or as though the staff should magnify itself, as who say: it were not wood. Therefore shall the LORD of Hosts send him poverty in his riches, and burn up his power, as it were with a fire. But the light of Israel shall be that fire, and his Sanctuary shall be the flame, and it shall kindle, and burn up his thorns and briers in one day. Yea all the glory of his woods and fields shall be consumed with body and soul. As for himself, he shall be as one chased away. The trees also of his field shall be of such a number that a child may tell them.
¶ After that day shall the remnant of Israel, and such as are escaped out of the house of Iacob, seek no more comfort at him that smote them, but shall comfort themselves with faithfulness and truth in the LORD, the holy one of Israel. The remnant, yea and the Posterity of Iacob, shall convert unto God the mighty one. For though thy people (O Israel) be as the sand of the sea, yet shall but the remnant of them only convert unto him. Perfect is the judgement of him that floweth in righteousness, and therefore the LORD of Hosts shall perfectly fulfil the thing, that he hath determined in the middest of the whole world.
¶ Therefore thus sayeth the Lord GOD of Hosts: Thou my people, that dwellest in Sion, be not afraid for the king of the Assirians: He shall wag his staff at thee, yea and beat thee with the rod, as the Egyptians did some time: But soon after, shall my wrath and mine indignation be fulfilled against their blasphemies. Moreover the LORD of Hosts shall prepare a scourge for him, like as was the punishment of Madian upon the mount of Oreb. And he shall lift up his rod over the sea, as he did sometime over the Egyptians. Then shall his burthen be taken from thy shoulders, and his yoke from thy neck, yea the same yoke shall be corrupt for very fatness. He shall come to Aiath, and go thorow toward Migron. But at Machmas shall he muster his Host, and go over the fiord. Gabaah shall be their resting place, Rhamah shall be afraid, Gabaah Saul shall flee away. The voice of the noise of thy horses, (O daughter of Gallim) shall be heard unto Laish and to Anathoth, which also shall be in trouble. Madmena shall tremble for fear, but the citizens of Gabin are manly, yet shall he remain at Nob that day. After that, shall he lift up his hand against the mount Sion, against the hill of Ierusalem. But see, the Lord GOD of Hosts shall take away the proud from thence, with fear. He shall hew down the proud, and fell the high minded. The thorns of the wood shall be rooted out with iron, and Libanus shall have a mighty fall.