1How terrible it will be for the land whose armies are like large numbers of flying insects! That land is along the rivers of Cush.2Its people send messengers on the Nile River. They travel over the water in papyrus boats. Messengers, hurry back home! Go back to your people, who are tall and have smooth skin. Everyone is afraid of them. They are warriors. Their language is different from ours. Their land is divided up by rivers.3Pay attention, all you people of the world! Listen, all you who live on earth! Banners will be lifted up on the mountains. And you will see them. Trumpets will be blown. And you will hear them.4The Lord says to me, “I will look down from heaven, where I live. I will be as quiet as summer heat in the sunshine. I will be as quiet as a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.”5A farmer cuts off new growth with pruning knives. He cuts down spreading branches and takes them away. He does it before the grapes are harvested. That's when the blooms are gone and the grapes are ripe. In the same way, the Lord will cut off the nations that are gathered against his people.6Their dead bodies will be left for the birds of the mountains to eat. They will be left for the wild animals. The birds will eat the dead bodies all summer long. The wild animals will eat them all through the winter.7At that time gifts will be brought to the Lord who rules over all. The people who are tall and have smooth skin will bring them. Everyone is afraid of those people. They are warriors. Their language is different from ours. Their land is divided up by rivers. They will bring their gifts to Mount Zion. That's where the Lord who rules over all has put his Name.
English Standard Version
An Oracle Concerning Cush
1Ah, land of whirring wings that is beyond the rivers of Cush, (2Ki 19:9; Isa 8:8; Isa 17:12)2which sends ambassadors by the sea, in vessels of papyrus on the waters! Go, you swift messengers, to a nation tall and smooth, to a people feared near and far, a nation mighty and conquering, whose land the rivers divide. (2Sa 8:2; Isa 18:7; Isa 30:4)3All you inhabitants of the world, you who dwell on the earth, when a signal is raised on the mountains, look! When a trumpet is blown, hear! (Isa 5:26)4For thus the Lord said to me: “I will quietly look from my dwelling like clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.” (Ps 11:4)5For before the harvest, when the blossom is over, and the flower becomes a ripening grape, he cuts off the shoots with pruning hooks, and the spreading branches he lops off and clears away. (Eze 31:3; Eze 31:12)6They shall all of them be left to the birds of prey of the mountains and to the beasts of the earth. And the birds of prey will summer on them, and all the beasts of the earth will winter on them. (Isa 18:5)7At that time tribute will be brought to the Lord of hosts from a people tall and smooth, from a people feared near and far, a nation mighty and conquering, whose land the rivers divide, to Mount Zion, the place of the name of the Lord of hosts. (2Sa 7:13; Ps 68:31; Isa 18:2; Isa 25:10)