Some people will return
20 At that time, only a few people will remain in Israel. Only a few descendants of Jacob will still be alive. They will no longer expect to receive help from a foreign ruler who is cruel to them. Instead, they will trust the Lord, the Holy God of Israel, to help them.
21 A few of Jacob's descendants will remain, and they will return to serve the mighty God. 22 Israel's people are now very many, as many as the sand on the shore of the sea. But only a few will remain to return. The Lord has decided to destroy you, people of Israel. His punishment is fair and right. 23 The Lord Almighty will destroy the whole land. He is ready to do that, as he has promised.
24 So this is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘My people who live in Zion, do not be afraid of the Assyrian army. They will hurt you, like someone who hits you with a heavy stick. They will be cruel to you like the people in Egypt were long ago. 25 But soon I will be angry with you no longer. Instead, I will be angry with the Assyrians, and I will be ready to destroy them.’
26 Yes, the Lord Almighty will punish the Assyrians, like someone who uses a whip to beat them. That is how he destroyed the Midianites at the Rock of Oreb. He will hold his stick over the sea. He will lift it up as he did in Egypt.
27 At that time, the Lord will remove the heavy load that is on your shoulders. He will destroy the yoke that is on your neck. You will no longer be their slaves. The Lord will bless you and make you fat.
28 Assyria's army attacks Aiath! It marches through Migron. They store their things at Michmash. 29 They go across the hills. They stay at Geba for a night. The people in Ramah are afraid! The people in Gibeah of Saul run away.
30 People in Gallim, shout for help! Listen carefully, people in Laishah. Answer them, people in Anathoth. 31 The people in Madmenah run away. Those who live in Gebim run to a safe place.
32 Today, the enemy has reached Nob and it stops there. He shakes his fist angrily at the people who live on Mount Zion in the city of Jerusalem.
33 But look! The Lord Almighty is ready to use his great power to destroy Assyria's strong army. He will cut it down, like a tall tree. He will cut off all the branches and knock all the trees down to the ground. 34 The Lord will take his axe and he will cut down the trees of that great forest. Even the best trees of Lebanon must fall down!
10:34The forest with its trees are a picture of Assyria's army and its soldiers.