1. Woe to the haughty crown of Ephraim's drunkards, to the fading flower of its proud splendour sited at the head of the lush valley, to those prostrated by wine!
2. See, a strong and mighty man in the Lord's service, like a storm of hail, a destroying tempest, like immense flood-waters overflowing, with his hand he throws them to the ground.
3. They will be trampled underfoot, the haughty crown of Ephraim's drunkards,
4. and the faded flower of its proud splendour sited at the head of the lush valley. Like a fig ripe before summer comes: whoever spots it forthwith picks and swallows it.
5. That day Yahweh Sabaoth will be a crown of splendour and a proud diadem for the remnant of his people,
6. a spirit of fair judgement for him who sits in judgement, and the strength of those who repel the assault on the gate.
7. These too have been confused by wine, have gone astray owing to liquor. Priest and prophet have become confused by liquor, are sodden with wine, have strayed owing to liquor, have become confused in their visions, have strayed in their decisions.
8. Yes, every table is covered in filthy vomit, not one is clean!
9. 'Whom does he think he is lecturing? Whom does he think his message is for? Babies just weaned? Babies just taken from the breast?
10. With his "Sav lasav, sav lasav, kav lakav, kav lakav, zeer sham, zeer sham!"
11. Now, with stammering lips and in a foreign language, he will talk to this nation.
12. He used to say to them, 'Here you can rest! Here you can let the weary rest! Here all is quiet.' But they refused to listen.
13. Now Yahweh is going to say this to them, 'Sav lasav, sav lasav, kav lakav, kav lakav, zeer sham, zeer sham.' So that when they walk they will fall over backwards and so be broken, trapped and taken captive.
14. Hence listen to Yahweh's word, you insolent men, rulers of this people in Jerusalem.
15. Because you have said, 'We have made a treaty with Death and have struck a pact with Sheol. When the scourging flood comes over, it will not touch us, for we have made lies our refuge and hidden under falsehood.'
16. So the Lord Yahweh says this, 'Now I shall lay a stone in Zion, a granite stone, a precious corner-stone, a firm foundation-stone: no one who relies on this will stumble.
17. And I will make fair judgement the measure, and uprightness the plumb-line.' But hail will sweep away the refuge of lies and floods wash away the hiding-place;
18. your treaty with Death will be broken and your pact with Sheol will not hold. When the scourging flood comes over, you will be trodden down by it;
19. every time it comes over, it will seize on you, for it will come over, morning after morning, day by day and night by night. Nothing but fear will make you understand what you hear.
20. For the bed is too short to stretch in, the blanket too narrow for covering.
21. Yes, as on Mount Perazim, Yahweh will rise, as in the Valley of Gibeon, he will storm to do his work, his mysterious work, to do his deed, his extraordinary deed.
22. Stop scoffing, then, or your bonds will be tightened further, for I have heard it: it has been irrevocably decided as regards the whole country by the Lord Yahweh Sabaoth.
23. Listen closely to my words, be attentive, understand what I am saying.
24. Does the ploughman plough all day to sow, breaking up and harrowing his ground?
25. Once he has levelled its surface, does he not scatter fennel, sow cummin? Then he puts in wheat, millet, barley and, round the edges, spelt,
26. for his God has taught him this rule and instructed him.
27. Fennel must not be crushed with a sledge, nor cart-wheels driven over cummin; fennel must be beaten with a stick, and cummin with a flail.
28. When you are threshing wheat, you do not waste time crushing it; you get the horse and cart-wheel moving, but you do not grind it fine.
29. All this is a gift from Yahweh Sabaoth, marvellous advice leading to great achievements.