Bible: Isaiah 40-66
The Lord Returns to Jerusalem
40:1 “Comfort, comfort my people,”
says your 1 God.
that her time of warfare is over, 4
that her punishment is completed. 5
40:3 A voice cries out,
“In the wilderness clear a way for the
construct in the desert a road for our God.
40:4 Every valley must be elevated,
and every mountain and hill leveled.
The rough terrain will become a level plain,
the rugged landscape a wide valley.
40:5 The splendor 7 of the
and all people 8 will see it at the same time.
40:6 A voice says, “Cry out!”
Another asks, 11 “What should I cry out?”
and all their promises 14 are like the flowers in the field.
40:7 The grass dries up,
the flowers wither,
when the wind sent by the
Surely humanity 16 is like grass.
40:8 The grass dries up,
the flowers wither,
but the decree of our God is forever reliable.” 17
40:9 Go up on a high mountain, O herald Zion!
Shout out loudly, O herald Jerusalem! 18
Shout, don’t be afraid!
Say to the towns of Judah,
“Here is your God!”
40:10 Look, the sovereign
his military power establishes his rule. 20
Look, his reward is with him;
his prize goes before him. 21
40:11 Like a shepherd he tends his flock;
he gathers up the lambs with his arm;
he carries them close to his heart; 22
he leads the ewes along.
The Lord is Incomparable
40:12 Who has measured out the waters 23 in the hollow of his hand,
or carefully weighed 26 the soil of the earth,
or weighed the mountains in a balance,
or the hills on scales? 27
or gives him instruction as his counselor? 30
40:14 From whom does he receive directions? 31
or imparts knowledge to him,
or instructs him in skillful design? 34
40:15 Look, the nations are like a drop in a bucket;
they are regarded as dust on the scales.
40:16 Not even Lebanon could supply enough firewood for a sacrifice; 37
its wild animals would not provide enough burnt offerings. 38
40:17 All the nations are insignificant before him;
they are regarded as absolutely nothing. 39
40:18 To whom can you compare God?
To what image can you liken him?
40:19 A craftsman casts 40 an idol;
a metalsmith overlays it with gold
and forges silver chains for it.
40:20 To make a contribution one selects wood that will not rot; 41
he then seeks a skilled craftsman
to make 42 an idol that will not fall over.
40:21 Do you not know?
Do you not hear?
Has it not been told to you since the very beginning?
Have you not understood from the time the earth’s foundations were made?
40:22 He is the one who sits on the earth’s horizon; 43
its inhabitants are like grasshoppers before him. 44
He is the one who stretches out the sky like a thin curtain, 45
40:23 He is the one who reduces rulers to nothing;
he makes the earth’s leaders insignificant.
40:24 Indeed, they are barely planted;
yes, they are barely sown;
yes, they barely take root in the earth,
and then he blows on them, causing them to dry up,
and the wind carries them away like straw.
40:25 “To whom can you compare me? Whom do I resemble?”
says the Holy One. 48
40:26 Look up at the sky! 49
Who created all these heavenly lights? 50
He is the one who leads out their ranks; 51
he calls them all by name.
Because of his absolute power and awesome strength,
not one of them is missing.
40:27 Why do you say, Jacob,
Why do you say, Israel,
My God is not concerned with my vindication”? 53
40:28 Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
the creator of the whole earth. 54
He does not get tired or weary;
there is no limit to his wisdom. 55
40:29 He gives strength to those who are tired;
to the ones who lack power, he gives renewed energy.
40:30 Even youths get tired and weary;
even strong young men clumsily stumble. 56
40:31 But those who wait for the
they rise up as if they had eagles’ wings, 58
they run without growing weary,
they walk without getting tired.
The Lord Challenges the Nations
41:1 “Listen to me in silence, you coastlands! 59
Let the nations find renewed strength!
Let them approach and then speak;
let us come together for debate! 60
41:2 Who stirs up this one from the east? 61
He hands nations over to him, 64
and enables him to subdue 65 kings.
He makes them like dust with his sword,
like windblown straw with his bow. 66
41:3 He pursues them and passes by unharmed; 67
he advances with great speed. 68
41:4 Who acts and carries out decrees? 69
Who 70 summons the successive generations from the beginning?
and at the very end – I am the one. 71
41:5 The coastlands 72 see and are afraid;
the whole earth 73 trembles;
they approach and come.
41:6 They help one another; 74
one says to the other, ‘Be strong!’
41:7 The craftsman encourages the metalsmith,
the one who wields the hammer encourages 75 the one who pounds on the anvil.
He approves the quality of the welding, 76
and nails it down so it won’t fall over.”
The Lord Encourages His People
41:8 “You, my servant Israel,
Jacob whom I have chosen,
offspring of Abraham my friend, 77
41:9 you whom I am bringing back 78 from the earth’s extremities,
and have summoned from the remote regions –
I told you, “You are my servant.”
I have chosen you and not rejected you.
41:10 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you!
Don’t be frightened, for I am your God! 79
I strengthen you –
yes, I help you –
yes, I uphold you with my saving right hand! 80
41:11 Look, all who were angry at you will be ashamed and humiliated;
41:12 When you will look for your opponents, 83 you will not find them;
your enemies 84 will be reduced to absolutely nothing.
41:13 For I am the
the one who takes hold of your right hand,
who says to you, ‘Don’t be afraid, I am helping you.’
41:14 Don’t be afraid, despised insignificant Jacob, 85
men of 86 Israel.
I am helping you,” says the
41:15 “Look, I am making you like 89 a sharp threshing sledge,
new and double-edged. 90
You will thresh the mountains and crush them;
you will make the hills like straw. 91
41:16 You will winnow them and the wind will blow them away;
the wind will scatter them.
You will rejoice in the
you will boast in the Holy One of Israel.
41:17 The oppressed and the poor look for water, but there is none;
their tongues are parched from thirst.
I, the God of Israel, will not abandon them.
41:18 I will make streams flow down the slopes
and produce springs in the middle of the valleys.
I will turn the desert into a pool of water
and the arid land into springs.
41:19 I will make cedars, acacias, myrtles, and olive trees grow in the wilderness;
I will make evergreens, firs, and cypresses grow together in the desert.
so they will pay attention and understand
and that the Holy One of Israel has brought it into being.” 96
The Lord Challenges the Pagan Gods
41:21 “Present your argument,” says the
41:22 “Let them produce evidence! Let them tell us what will happen!
Tell us about your earlier predictive oracles, 99
Or decree for us some future events!
41:23 Predict how future events will turn out, 102
so we might know you are gods.
Yes, do something good or bad,
so we might be frightened and in awe. 103
41:24 Look, you are nothing, and your accomplishments are nonexistent;
the one who chooses to worship you is disgusting. 104
41:25 I have stirred up one out of the north 105 and he advances,
one from the eastern horizon who prays in my name. 106
He steps on 107 rulers as if they were clay,
like a potter treading the clay.
41:26 Who decreed this from the beginning, so we could know?
Who announced it 108 ahead of time, so we could say, ‘He’s correct’?
Indeed, none of them decreed it!
Indeed, none of them announced it!
Indeed, no one heard you say anything!
41:27 I first decreed to Zion, ‘Look, here’s what will happen!’ 109
I sent a herald to Jerusalem. 110
41:28 I look, but there is no one,
among them there is no one who serves as an adviser,
that I might ask questions and receive answers.
41:29 Look, all of them are nothing, 111
their accomplishments are nonexistent;
their metal images lack any real substance. 11242:1
The Lord Commissions His Special Servant
“Here is my servant whom I support,
my chosen one in whom I take pleasure.
I have placed my spirit on him;
42:2 He will not cry out or shout;
he will not publicize himself in the streets. 116
42:3 A crushed reed he will not break,
a dim wick he will not extinguish; 117
he will faithfully make just decrees. 118
42:4 He will not grow dim or be crushed 119
before establishing justice on the earth;
42:5 This is what the true God, 122 the
the one who created the sky and stretched it out,
the one who fashioned the earth and everything that lives on it, 123
the one who gives breath to the people on it,
and life to those who live on it: 124
42:6 “I, the
I take hold of your hand.
42:7 to open blind eyes, 130
to release prisoners 131 from dungeons,
those who live in darkness from prisons.
The Lord Intervenes
42:8 I am the
I will not share my glory with anyone else,
or the praise due me with idols.
42:9 Look, my earlier predictive oracles have come to pass; 132
now I announce new events.
Before they begin to occur,
I reveal them to you.” 133
42:10 Sing to the
Praise him 134 from the horizon of the earth,
you who go down to the sea, and everything that lives in it, 135
you coastlands 136 and those who live there!
42:11 Let the desert and its cities shout out,
the towns where the nomads of Kedar live!
Let the residents of Sela shout joyfully;
let them shout loudly from the mountaintops.
42:12 Let them give the
let them praise his deeds in the coastlands. 138
like a warrior he inspires himself for battle; 139
he shouts, yes, he yells,
he shows his enemies his power. 140
42:14 “I have been inactive 141 for a long time;
I kept quiet and held back.
Like a woman in labor I groan;
I pant and gasp. 142
42:15 I will make the trees on the mountains and hills wither up; 143
I will dry up all their vegetation.
I will turn streams into islands, 144
and dry up pools of water. 145
42:16 I will lead the blind along an unfamiliar way; 146
I will guide them down paths they have never traveled. 147
I will turn the darkness in front of them into light,
and level out the rough ground. 148
This is what I will do for them.
I will not abandon them.
42:17 Those who trust in idols
will turn back and be utterly humiliated, 149
those who say to metal images, ‘You are our gods.’”
The Lord Reasons with His People
42:18 “Listen, you deaf ones!
Take notice, 150 you blind ones!
42:19 My servant is truly blind,
my messenger is truly deaf.
their ears are open, but do not hear.”
by magnifying his law and displaying it. 155
42:22 But these people are looted and plundered;
all of them are trapped in pits 156
and held captive 157 in prisons.
They were carried away as loot with no one to rescue them;
they were carried away as plunder, and no one says, “Bring that back!” 158
42:23 Who among you will pay attention to this?
Who will listen attentively in the future? 159
42:24 Who handed Jacob over to the robber?
Who handed Israel over to the looters? 160
Was it not the
They refused to follow his commands;
they disobeyed his law. 161
42:25 So he poured out his fierce anger on them,
along with the devastation 162 of war.
Its flames encircled them, but they did not realize it; 163
it burned against them, but they did notice. 164
The Lord Will Rescue His People
43:1 Now, this is what the
the one who created you, O Jacob,
and formed you, O Israel:
“Don’t be afraid, for I will protect 165 you.
I call you by name, you are mine.
43:2 When you pass through the waters, I am with you;
when you pass 166 through the streams, they will not overwhelm you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned;
the flames will not harm 167 you.
43:3 For I am the
the Holy One of Israel, 168 your deliverer.
I have handed over Egypt as a ransom price,
Ethiopia and Seba 169 in place of you.
43:4 Since you are precious and special in my sight, 170
and I love you,
I will hand over people in place of you,
nations in place of your life.
43:5 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
From the east I will bring your descendants;
from the west I will gather you.
43:6 I will say to the north, ‘Hand them over!’
and to the south, ‘Don’t hold any back!’
Bring my sons from distant lands,
and my daughters from the remote regions of the earth,
43:7 everyone who belongs to me, 171
whom I created for my glory,
whom I formed – yes, whom I made!
The Lord Declares His Sovereignty
43:8 Bring out the people who are blind, even though they have eyes,
those who are deaf, even though they have ears!
43:9 All nations gather together,
the peoples assemble.
Who among them announced this?
Who predicted earlier events for us? 172
Let them produce their witnesses to testify they were right;
let them listen and affirm, ‘It is true.’
43:10 You are my witnesses,” says the
“my servant whom I have chosen,
so that you may consider 173 and believe in me,
and understand that I am he.
No god was formed before me,
and none will outlive me. 174
43:11 I, I am the
and there is no deliverer besides me.
43:12 I decreed and delivered and proclaimed,
and there was no other god among you.
You are my witnesses,” says the
43:13 From this day forward I am he;
no one can deliver from my power; 175
I will act, and who can prevent it?”
The Lord Will Do Something New
43:14 This is what the
“For your sake I send to Babylon
and make them all fugitives, 178
turning the Babylonians’ joyful shouts into mourning songs. 179
43:15 I am the
the one who created Israel, your king.”
43:16 This is what the
the one who made a road through the sea,
a pathway through the surging waters,
43:17 the one who led chariots and horses to destruction, 181
together with a mighty army.
They fell down, 182 never to rise again;
they were extinguished, put out like a burning wick:
43:18 “Don’t remember these earlier events; 183
don’t recall these former events.
43:19 “Look, I am about to do something new.
Yes, I will make a road in the desert
and paths 186 in the wilderness.
43:20 The wild animals of the desert honor me,
the jackals and ostriches,
because I put water in the desert
and streams in the wilderness,
to quench the thirst of my chosen people,
43:21 the people whom I formed for myself,
so they might praise me.” 187
The Lord Rebukes His People
43:22 “But you did not call for me, O Jacob;
you did not long 188 for me, O Israel.
43:23 You did not bring me lambs for your burnt offerings;
you did not honor me with your sacrifices.
I did not burden you with offerings;
I did not make you weary by demanding 189 incense.
43:24 You did not buy me aromatic reeds; 190
you did not present to me 191 the fat of your sacrifices.
Yet you burdened me with your sins;
you made me weary with your evil deeds. 192
43:25 I, I am the one who blots out your rebellious deeds for my sake;
your sins I do not remember.
43:26 Remind me of what happened! Let’s debate!
You, prove to me that you are right! 193
43:27 The father of your nation 194 sinned;
your spokesmen 195 rebelled against me.
43:28 So I defiled your holy princes,
and handed Jacob over to destruction,
and subjected 196 Israel to humiliating abuse.”
The Lord Will Renew Israel
44:1 “Now, listen, Jacob my servant,
Israel whom I have chosen!”
44:2 This is what the
the one who formed you in the womb and helps you:
“Don’t be afraid, my servant Jacob,
Jeshurun, 197 whom I have chosen!
44:3 For I will pour water on the parched ground 198
and cause streams to flow 199 on the dry land.
I will pour my spirit on your offspring
and my blessing on your children.
44:4 They will sprout up like a tree in the grass, 200
like poplars beside channels of water.
44:5 One will say, ‘I belong to the
and another will use 201 the name ‘Jacob.’
One will write on his hand, ‘The
and use the name ‘Israel.’” 202
The Absurdity of Idolatry
44:6 This is what the
their protector, 203 the
“I am the first and I am the last,
there is no God but me.
44:7 Who is like me? Let him make his claim! 204
Let him announce it and explain it to me –
since I established an ancient people – 205
let them announce future events! 206
44:8 Don’t panic! Don’t be afraid! 207
Did I not tell you beforehand and decree it?
You are my witnesses! Is there any God but me?
There is no other sheltering rock; 208 I know of none.
44:9 All who form idols are nothing;
the things in which they delight are worthless.
Their witnesses cannot see;
they recognize nothing, so they are put to shame.
44:10 Who forms a god and casts an idol
that will prove worthless? 209
44:11 Look, all his associates 210 will be put to shame;
the craftsmen are mere humans. 211
Let them all assemble and take their stand!
They will panic and be put to shame.
44:12 A blacksmith works with his tool 212
and forges metal over the coals.
He forms it 213 with hammers;
he makes it with his strong arm.
He gets hungry and loses his energy; 214
he drinks no water and gets tired.
44:13 A carpenter takes measurements; 215
he marks out an outline of its form; 216
he scrapes 217 it with chisels,
and marks it with a compass.
He patterns it after the human form, 218
like a well-built human being,
and puts it in a shrine. 219
44:14 He cuts down cedars
and acquires a cypress 220 or an oak.
He gets 221 trees from the forest;
he plants a cedar 222 and the rain makes it grow.
44:15 A man uses it to make a fire; 223
he takes some of it and warms himself.
Yes, he kindles a fire and bakes bread.
Then he makes a god and worships it;
he makes an idol and bows down to it. 224
44:16 Half of it he burns in the fire –
over that half he cooks 225 meat;
he roasts a meal and fills himself.
Yes, he warms himself and says,
‘Ah! I am warm as I look at the fire.’
44:17 With the rest of it he makes a god, his idol;
he bows down to it and worships it.
He prays to it, saying,
‘Rescue me, for you are my god!’
44:18 They do not comprehend or understand,
for their eyes are blind and cannot see;
their minds do not discern. 226
44:19 No one thinks to himself,
nor do they comprehend or understand and say to themselves:
‘I burned half of it in the fire –
yes, I baked bread over the coals;
I roasted meat and ate it.
With the rest of it should I make a disgusting idol?
Should I bow down to dry wood?’ 227
44:20 He feeds on ashes; 228
his deceived mind misleads him.
He cannot rescue himself,
nor does he say, ‘Is this not a false god I hold in my right hand?’ 229
44:21 Remember these things, O Jacob,
O Israel, for you are my servant.
I formed you to be my servant;
O Israel, I will not forget you! 230
44:22 I remove the guilt of your rebellious deeds as if they were a cloud,
the guilt of your sins as if they were a cloud. 231
Come back to me, for I protect 232 you.”
44:23 Shout for joy, O sky, for the
shout out, you subterranean regions 234 of the earth.
O mountains, give a joyful shout;
you too, O forest and all your trees! 235
he reveals his splendor through Israel. 237
The Lord Empowers Cyrus
44:24 This is what the
the one who formed you in the womb:
“I am the
who alone stretched out the sky,
who fashioned the earth all by myself, 239
44:25 who frustrates the omens of the empty talkers 240
and humiliates 241 the omen readers,
who overturns the counsel of the wise men 242
and makes their advice 243 seem foolish,
44:26 who fulfills the oracles of his prophetic servants 244
and brings to pass the announcements 245 of his messengers,
who says about Jerusalem, 246 ‘She will be inhabited,’
and about the towns of Judah, ‘They will be rebuilt,
her ruins I will raise up,’
44:27 who says to the deep sea, ‘Be dry!
I will dry up your sea currents,’
to carry out all my wishes 249
and to decree concerning Jerusalem, ‘She will be rebuilt,’
and concerning the temple, ‘It will be reconstructed.’” 250
45:1 This is what the
to Cyrus, whose right hand I hold 252
in order to subdue nations before him,
and disarm kings, 253
to open doors before him,
so gates remain unclosed:
45:2 “I will go before you
and level mountains. 254
Bronze doors I will shatter
and iron bars 255 I will hack through.
45:3 I will give you hidden treasures, 256
riches stashed away in secret places,
so you may recognize that I am the
the one who calls you by name, the God of Israel.
45:4 For the sake of my servant Jacob,
Israel, my chosen one,
I call you by name
and give you a title of respect, even though you do not recognize 257 me.
45:5 I am the
there is no God but me.
that there is no God but me;
I am the
45:7 I am 263 the one who forms light
and creates darkness; 264
the one who brings about peace
and creates calamity. 265
I am the
45:8 O sky, rain down from above!
Let the clouds send down showers 266 of deliverance!
and deliverance may sprout up 269 along with it.
The Lord Gives a Warning
45:9 One who argues with his creator is in grave danger, 271
one who is like a mere 272 shard among the other shards on the ground!
The clay should not say to the potter, 273
“What in the world 274 are you doing?
Your work lacks skill!” 275
45:10 Danger awaits one who says 276 to his father,
“What in the world 277 are you fathering?”
and to his mother,
“What in the world are you bringing forth?” 278
45:11 This is what the
the Holy One of Israel, 279 the one who formed him,
concerning things to come: 280
“How dare you question me 281 about my children!
How dare you tell me what to do with 282 the work of my own hands!
45:12 I made the earth,
I created the people who live 283 on it.
I give orders to all the heavenly lights. 286
45:13 It is me – I stir him up and commission him; 287
I will make all his ways level.
He will rebuild my city;
he will send my exiled people home,
but not for a price or a bribe,”
The Lord is the Nations’ Only Hope
45:14 This is what the
along with the Sabeans, those tall men,
will be brought to you 290 and become yours.
They will walk behind you, coming along in chains. 291
They will bow down to you
and pray to you: 292
there is no other God!’”
45:15 Yes, you are a God who keeps hidden,
O God of Israel, deliverer!
45:16 They will all be ashamed and embarrassed;
those who fashion idols will all be humiliated. 295
45:17 Israel will be delivered once and for all by the
you will never again be ashamed or humiliated. 297
45:18 For this is what the
the one who created the sky –
he is the true God, 298
the one who formed the earth and made it;
he established it,
he did not create it without order, 299
he formed it to be inhabited –
“I am the
45:19 I have not spoken in secret,
in some hidden place. 300
I did not tell Jacob’s descendants,
‘Seek me in vain!’ 301
I am the
the one who speaks honestly,
who makes reliable announcements. 302
45:20 Gather together and come!
Approach together, you refugees from the nations!
Those who carry wooden idols know nothing,
those who pray to a god that cannot deliver.
45:21 Tell me! Present the evidence! 303
Let them consult with one another!
Who predicted this in the past?
Who announced it beforehand?
Was it not I, the
I have no peer, there is no God but me,
a God who vindicates and delivers; 304
there is none but me.
45:22 Turn to me so you can be delivered, 305
all you who live in the earth’s remote regions!
For I am God, and I have no peer.
45:23 I solemnly make this oath 306 –
what I say is true and reliable: 307
‘Surely every knee will bow to me,
every tongue will solemnly affirm; 308
45:24 they will say about me,
All who are angry at him will cower before him. 310
45:25 All the descendants of Israel will be vindicated by the
and will boast in him. 311
The Lord Carries His People
46:1 Bel 312 kneels down,
Nebo 313 bends low.
Their images weigh down animals and beasts. 314
Your heavy images are burdensome to tired animals. 315
46:2 Together they bend low and kneel down;
they are unable to rescue the images; 316
46:3 “Listen to me, O family of Jacob, 319
all you who are left from the family of Israel, 320
you who have been carried from birth, 321
you who have been supported from the time you left the womb. 322
46:4 Even when you are old, I will take care of you, 323
even when you have gray hair, I will carry you.
I made you and I will support you;
I will carry you and rescue you. 324
46:5 To whom can you compare and liken me?
Tell me whom you think I resemble, so we can be compared!
46:6 Those who empty out gold from a purse
and weigh out silver on the scale 325
hire a metalsmith, who makes it into a god.
They then bow down and worship it.
46:7 They put it on their shoulder and carry it;
they put it in its place and it just stands there;
it does not 326 move from its place.
Even when someone cries out to it, it does not reply;
it does not deliver him from his distress.
46:8 Remember this, so you can be brave! 327
Think about it, you rebels! 328
46:9 Remember what I accomplished in antiquity! 329
Truly I am God, I have no peer; 330
I am God, and there is none like me,
46:10 who announces the end from the beginning
and reveals beforehand 331 what has not yet occurred,
who says, ‘My plan will be realized,
I will accomplish what I desire,’
46:11 who summons an eagle 332 from the east,
from a distant land, one who carries out my plan.
Yes, I have decreed, 333
yes, I will bring it to pass;
I have formulated a plan,
yes, I will carry it out.
46:12 Listen to me, you stubborn people, 334
you who distance yourself from doing what is right. 335
46:13 I am bringing my deliverance near, it is not far away;
I am bringing my salvation near, 336 it does not wait.
I will save Zion; 337
I will adorn Israel with my splendor.” 338
Babylon Will Fall
47:1 “Fall down! Sit in the dirt,
O virgin 339 daughter Babylon!
Sit on the ground, not on a throne,
O daughter of the Babylonians!
Indeed, 340 you will no longer be called delicate and pampered.
47:2 Pick up millstones and grind flour!
Remove your veil,
strip off your skirt,
expose your legs,
cross the streams!
47:3 Let your private parts be exposed!
Your genitals will be on display! 341
I will get revenge;
I will not have pity on anyone,” 342
47:4 says our protector –
the Holy One of Israel. 343
47:5 “Sit silently! Go to a hiding place, 344
O daughter of the Babylonians!
Indeed, 345 you will no longer be called ‘Queen of kingdoms.’
47:6 I was angry at my people;
I defiled my special possession
and handed them over to you.
You showed them no mercy; 346
you even placed a very heavy burden on old people. 347
47:7 You said,
‘I will rule forever as permanent queen!’ 348
You did not think about these things; 349
you did not consider how it would turn out. 350
47:8 So now, listen to this,
O one who lives so lavishly, 351
who lives securely,
who says to herself, 352
‘I am unique! No one can compare to me! 353
I will never have to live as a widow;
I will never lose my children.’ 354
47:9 Both of these will come upon you
suddenly, in one day!
You will lose your children and be widowed. 355
You will be overwhelmed by these tragedies, 356
despite 357 your many incantations
and your numerous amulets. 358
47:10 You were complacent in your evil deeds; 359
you thought, 360 ‘No one sees me.’
Your self-professed 361 wisdom and knowledge lead you astray,
when you say, ‘I am unique! No one can compare to me!’ 362
47:11 Disaster will overtake you;
you will not know how to charm it away. 363
Destruction will fall on you;
you will not be able to appease it.
Calamity will strike you suddenly,
before you recognize it. 364
and your many incantations,
which you have faithfully recited 367 since your youth!
Maybe you will be successful 368 –
maybe you will scare away disaster. 369
47:13 You are tired out from listening to so much advice. 370
Let them take their stand –
the ones who see omens in the sky,
who gaze at the stars,
who make monthly predictions –
let them rescue you from the disaster that is about to overtake you! 371
47:14 Look, they are like straw,
which the fire burns up;
they cannot rescue themselves
from the heat 372 of the flames.
There are no coals to warm them,
no firelight to enjoy. 373
47:15 They will disappoint you, 374
those you have so faithfully dealt with since your youth. 375
Each strays off in his own direction, 376
leaving no one to rescue you.”
The Lord Appeals to the Exiles
48:1 Listen to this, O family of Jacob, 377
you who are called by the name ‘Israel,’
and are descended from Judah, 378
who take oaths in the name of the
and invoke 379 the God of Israel –
but not in an honest and just manner. 380
48:2 Indeed, they live in the holy city; 381
they trust in 382 the God of Israel,
whose name is the
48:3 “I announced events beforehand, 383
I issued the decrees and made the predictions; 384
suddenly I acted and they came to pass.
48:4 I did this 385 because I know how stubborn you are.
Your neck muscles are like iron
and your forehead like bronze. 386
48:5 I announced them to you beforehand;
before they happened, I predicted them for you,
so you could never say,
‘My image did these things,
my idol, my cast image, decreed them.’
48:6 You have heard; now look at all the evidence! 387
Will you not admit that what I say is true? 388
From this point on I am announcing to you new events
that are previously unrevealed and you do not know about. 389
48:7 Now they come into being, 390 not in the past;
before today you did not hear about them,
so you could not say,
‘Yes, 391 I know about them.’
48:8 You did not hear,
you do not know,
you were not told beforehand. 392
For I know that you are very deceitful; 393
you were labeled 394 a rebel from birth.
48:9 For the sake of my reputation 395 I hold back my anger;
48:10 Look, I have refined you, but not as silver;
I have purified you 398 in the furnace of misery.
48:11 For my sake alone 399 I will act,
for how can I allow my name to be defiled? 400
I will not share my glory with anyone else! 401
48:12 Listen to me, O Jacob,
Israel, whom I summoned!
I am the one;
I am present at the very beginning
and at the very end. 402
48:13 Yes, my hand founded the earth;
my right hand spread out the sky.
I summon them;
they stand together.
48:14 All of you, gather together and listen!
Who among them 403 announced these things?
he will exert his power against the Babylonians. 405
48:15 I, I have spoken –
yes, I have summoned him;
I lead him and he will succeed. 406
48:16 Approach me! Listen to this!
From the very first I have not spoken in secret;
when it happens, 407 I am there.”
So now, the sovereign
48:17 This is what the
the Holy One of Israel: 410
“I am the
who teaches you how to succeed,
who leads you in the way you should go.
48:18 If only you had obeyed my 411 commandments,
prosperity would have flowed to you like a river, 412
deliverance would have come to you like the waves of the sea. 413
48:19 Your descendants would have been as numerous as sand, 414
and your children 415 like its granules.
Their name would not have been cut off
and eliminated from my presence. 416
48:20 Leave Babylon!
Flee from the Babylonians!
Announce it with a shout of joy!
Make this known!
Proclaim it throughout the earth! 417
48:21 They do not thirst as he leads them through dry regions;
he makes water flow out of a rock for them;
he splits open a rock and water flows out.’ 419
48:22 There will be no prosperity for the wicked,” says the
Ideal Israel Delivers the Exiles
49:1 Listen to me, you coastlands! 420
Pay attention, you people who live far away!
he commissioned me when my mother brought me into the world. 422
49:2 He made my mouth like a sharp sword,
he hid me in the hollow of his hand;
he made me like a sharpened 423 arrow,
he hid me in his quiver. 424
49:3 He said to me, “You are my servant,
Israel, through whom I will reveal my splendor.” 425
49:4 But I thought, 426 “I have worked in vain;
I have expended my energy for absolutely nothing.” 427
my God will reward me. 428
49:5 So now the
the one who formed me from birth 429 to be his servant –
he did this 430 to restore Jacob to himself,
so that Israel might be gathered to him;
and I will be honored 431 in the
for my God is my source of strength 432 –
49:6 he says, “Is it too insignificant a task for you to be my servant,
to reestablish the tribes of Jacob,
I will make you a light to the nations, 435
so you can bring 436 my deliverance to the remote regions of the earth.”
49:7 This is what the
a servant of rulers:
“Kings will see and rise in respect, 442
princes will bow down,
because of the faithful
the Holy One of Israel who has chosen you.”
49:8 This is what the
“At the time I decide to show my favor, I will respond to you;
in the day of deliverance I will help you;
and to reassign the desolate property.
49:9 You will say 447 to the prisoners, ‘Come out,’
They will graze beside the roads;
on all the slopes they will find pasture.
49:10 They will not be hungry or thirsty;
the sun’s oppressive heat will not beat down on them, 450
for one who has compassion on them will guide them;
he will lead them to springs of water.
49:11 I will make all my mountains into a road;
I will construct my roadways.”
49:12 Look, they come from far away!
Look, some come from the north and west,
and others from the land of Sinim! 451
49:13 Shout for joy, O sky! 452
Rejoice, O earth!
Let the mountains give a joyful shout!
and shows compassion to the 453 oppressed.
The Lord Remembers Zion
49:14 “Zion said, ‘The
the sovereign master 454 has forgotten me.’
49:15 Can a woman forget her baby who nurses at her breast? 455
Can she withhold compassion from the child she has borne? 456
Even if mothers 457 were to forget,
I could never forget you! 458
49:16 Look, I have inscribed your name 459 on my palms;
your walls are constantly before me.
49:17 Your children hurry back,
while those who destroyed and devastated you depart.
49:18 Look all around you! 460
All of them gather to you.
As surely as I live,” says the
“you will certainly wear all of them like jewelry;
you will put them on as if you were a bride.
49:19 Yes, your land lies in ruins;
it is desolate and devastated. 461
But now you will be too small to hold your residents,
and those who devoured you will be far away.
49:20 Yet the children born during your time of bereavement
will say within your hearing,
‘This place is too cramped for us, 462
make room for us so we can live here.’ 463
49:21 Then you will think to yourself, 464
‘Who bore these children for me?
I was bereaved and barren,
dismissed and divorced. 465
Who raised these children?
Look, I was left all alone;
where did these children come from?’”
49:22 This is what the sovereign
“Look I will raise my hand to the nations;
I will raise my signal flag to the peoples.
They will bring your sons in their arms
and carry your daughters on their shoulders.
49:23 Kings will be your children’s 466 guardians;
their princesses will nurse your children. 467
With their faces to the ground they will bow down to you
and they will lick the dirt on 468 your feet.
Then you will recognize that I am the
those who wait patiently for me are not put to shame.
49:24 Can spoils be taken from a warrior,
or captives be rescued from a conqueror? 469
49:25 Indeed,” says the
“captives will be taken from a warrior;
spoils will be rescued from a conqueror.
I will oppose your adversary
and I will rescue your children.
49:26 I will make your oppressors eat their own flesh;
they will get drunk on their own blood, as if it were wine. 470
Then all humankind 471 will recognize that
I am the
50:1 This is what the
“Where is your mother’s divorce certificate
by which I divorced her?
Or to which of my creditors did I sell you? 474
Look, you were sold because of your sins; 475
because of your rebellious acts I divorced your mother. 476
50:2 Why does no one challenge me when I come?
Why does no one respond when I call? 477
Do I lack the power to rescue you?
Look, with a mere shout 480 I can dry up the sea;
I can turn streams into a desert,
so the fish rot away and die
from lack of water. 481
50:3 I can clothe the sky in darkness;
I can cover it with sackcloth.”
The Servant Perseveres
50:4 The sovereign
so that I know how to help the weary. 483
He wakes me up every morning;
he makes me alert so I can listen attentively as disciples do. 484
50:5 The sovereign
I have not rebelled,
I have not turned back.
50:6 I offered my back to those who attacked, 486
my jaws to those who tore out my beard;
I did not hide my face
from insults and spitting.
50:7 But the sovereign
so I am not humiliated.
For that reason I am steadfastly resolved; 487
I know I will not be put to shame.
50:8 The one who vindicates me is close by.
Who dares to argue with me? Let us confront each other! 488
50:9 Look, the sovereign
Who dares to condemn me?
Look, all of them will wear out like clothes;
a moth will eat away at them.
50:10 Who among you fears the
Who obeys 491 his servant?
Whoever walks in deep darkness, 492
should trust in the name of the
and rely on his God.
50:11 Look, all of you who start a fire
and among the flaming arrows you ignited! 497
This is what you will receive from me: 498
you will lie down in a place of pain. 499
There is Hope for the Future
51:1 “Listen to me, you who pursue godliness, 500
who seek the
Look at the rock from which you were chiseled,
51:2 Look at Abraham, your father,
and Sarah, who gave you birth. 503
When I summoned him, he was a lone individual, 504
51:3 Certainly the
he will console all her ruins.
He will make her wilderness like Eden,
her desert like the Garden of the
Happiness and joy will be restored to 507 her,
thanksgiving and the sound of music.
51:4 Pay attention to me, my people!
Listen to me, my people!
I will make my justice a light to the nations. 510
51:5 I am ready to vindicate, 511
I am ready to deliver, 512
I will establish justice among the nations. 513
The coastlands 514 wait patiently for me;
they wait in anticipation for the revelation of my power. 515
51:6 Look up at the sky!
Look at the earth below!
For the sky will dissipate 516 like smoke,
and the earth will wear out like clothes;
its residents will die like gnats.
But the deliverance I give 517 is permanent;
51:7 Listen to me, you who know what is right,
you people who are aware of my law! 520
Don’t be afraid of the insults of men;
don’t be discouraged because of their abuse!
51:8 For a moth will eat away at them like clothes;
a clothes moth will devour them like wool.
But the vindication I provide 521 will be permanent;
the deliverance I give will last.”
51:9 Wake up! Wake up!
Clothe yourself with strength, O arm of the
Wake up as in former times, as in antiquity!
51:10 Did you not dry up the sea,
the waters of the great deep?
Did you not make 527 a path through the depths of the sea,
so those delivered from bondage 528 could cross over?
51:11 Those whom the
they will enter Zion with a happy shout.
Unending joy will crown them, 529
happiness and joy will overwhelm 530 them;
grief and suffering will disappear. 531
51:12 “I, I am the one who consoles you. 532
Why are you afraid of mortal men,
of mere human beings who are as short-lived as grass? 533
51:13 Why do you forget 534 the
who stretched out the sky 535
and founded the earth?
Why do you constantly tremble all day long 536
at the anger of the oppressor,
when he makes plans to destroy?
Where is the anger of the oppressor? 537
51:14 The one who suffers 538 will soon be released;
he will not die in prison, 539
he will not go hungry. 540
51:15 I am the
who churns up the sea so that its waves surge.
Zion’s Time to Celebrate
I cover you with the palm of my hand, 543
to establish 544 the sky and to found the earth,
to say to Zion, ‘You are my people.’” 545
51:17 Wake up! Wake up!
Get up, O Jerusalem!
You drank from the cup the
which was full of his anger! 546
You drained dry
the goblet full of intoxicating wine. 547
51:18 There was no one to lead her
among all the children she bore;
there was no one to take her by the hand
among all the children she raised.
51:19 These double disasters confronted you.
But who feels sorry for you?
Destruction and devastation,
famine and sword.
But who consoles you? 548
51:20 Your children faint;
they lie at the head of every street
like an antelope in a snare.
They are left in a stupor by the
by the battle cry of your God. 549
51:21 So listen to this, oppressed one,
who is drunk, but not from wine!
51:22 This is what your sovereign master, 550 the
“Look, I have removed from your hand
the cup of intoxicating wine, 551
the goblet full of my anger. 552
You will no longer have to drink it.
51:23 I will put it into the hand of your tormentors 553
who said to you, ‘Lie down, so we can walk over you.’
You made your back like the ground,
and like the street for those who walked over you.”
52:1 Wake up! Wake up!
Clothe yourself with strength, O Zion!
Put on your beautiful clothes,
O Jerusalem, 554 holy city!
For uncircumcised and unclean pagans
will no longer invade you.
52:2 Shake off the dirt! 555
Get up, captive 556 Jerusalem!
Take off the iron chains around your neck,
O captive daughter Zion!
52:3 For this is what the
“You were sold for nothing,
and you will not be redeemed for money.”
52:4 For this is what the sovereign
“In the beginning my people went to live temporarily in Egypt;
Assyria oppressed them for no good reason.
52:5 And now, what do we have here?” 557 says the
“Indeed my people have been carried away for nothing,
those who rule over them taunt,” 558 says the
“and my name is constantly slandered 559 all day long.
52:6 For this reason my people will know my name,
‘Here I am.’”
52:7 How delightful it is to see approaching over the mountains 562
the feet of a messenger who announces peace,
a messenger who brings good news, who announces deliverance,
who says to Zion, “Your God reigns!” 563
52:8 Listen, 564 your watchmen shout;
in unison they shout for joy,
for they see with their very own eyes 565
52:9 In unison give a joyful shout,
O ruins of Jerusalem!
he protects 566 Jerusalem.
in the sight of all the nations;
the entire 569 earth sees
our God deliver. 570
52:11 Leave! Leave! Get out of there!
Don’t touch anything unclean!
Get out of it!
Stay pure, you who carry the
52:12 Yet do not depart quickly
or leave in a panic. 572
the God of Israel is your rear guard.
The Lord Will Vindicate His Servant
52:13 “Look, my servant will succeed! 573
He will be elevated, lifted high, and greatly exalted 574 –
52:14 (just as many were horrified by the sight of you) 575
52:15 his form was so marred he no longer looked human 578 –
Kings will be shocked by his exaltation, 581
for they will witness something unannounced to them,
and they will understand something they had not heard about.
53:2 He sprouted up like a twig before God, 587
like a root out of parched soil; 588
he had no stately form or majesty that might catch our attention, 589
no special appearance that we should want to follow him. 590
53:3 He was despised and rejected by people, 591
one who experienced pain and was acquainted with illness;
people hid their faces from him; 592
he was despised, and we considered him insignificant. 593
53:4 But he lifted up our illnesses,
he carried our pain; 594
even though we thought he was being punished,
attacked by God, and afflicted for something he had done. 595
53:5 He was wounded because of 596 our rebellious deeds,
crushed because of our sins;
he endured punishment that made us well; 597
because of his wounds we have been healed. 598
53:6 All of us had wandered off like sheep;
each of us had strayed off on his own path,
53:7 He was treated harshly and afflicted, 600
but he did not even open his mouth.
Like a lamb led to the slaughtering block,
like a sheep silent before her shearers,
he did not even open his mouth. 601
53:8 He was led away after an unjust trial 602 –
but who even cared? 603
Indeed, he was cut off from the land of the living; 604
because of the rebellion of his own 605 people he was wounded.
53:9 They intended to bury him with criminals, 606
but he ended up in a rich man’s tomb, 607
because 608 he had committed no violent deeds,
nor had he spoken deceitfully.
53:10 Though the
once restitution is made, 609
he will see descendants and enjoy long life, 610
53:11 Having suffered, he will reflect on his work,
he will be satisfied when he understands what he has done. 611
for he carried their sins. 614
53:12 So I will assign him a portion with the multitudes, 615
he will divide the spoils of victory with the powerful, 616
because he willingly submitted 617 to death
and was numbered with the rebels,
when he lifted up the sin of many
and intervened 618 on behalf of the rebels.”
Zion Will Be Secure
54:1 “Shout for joy, O barren one who has not given birth!
Give a joyful shout and cry out, you who have not been in labor!
For the children of the desolate one are more numerous
than the children of the married woman,” says the
54:2 Make your tent larger,
stretch your tent curtains farther out! 619
Spare no effort,
lengthen your ropes,
and pound your stakes deep. 620
54:3 For you will spread out to the right and to the left;
your children will conquer 621 nations
and will resettle desolate cities.
54:4 Don’t be afraid, for you will not be put to shame!
Don’t be intimidated, 622 for you will not be humiliated!
You will forget about the shame you experienced in your youth;
you will no longer remember the disgrace of your abandonment. 623
54:5 For your husband is the one who made you –
He is called “God of the entire earth.”
54:6 “Indeed, the
like a wife who has been abandoned and suffers from depression, 626
like a young wife when she has been rejected,” says your God.
54:7 “For a short time I abandoned 627 you,
but with great compassion I will gather you.
but with lasting devotion I will have compassion on you,”
says your protector, 630 the
54:9 “As far as I am concerned, this is like in Noah’s time, 631
when I vowed that the waters of Noah’s flood 632 would never again cover the earth.
In the same way I have vowed that I will not be angry at you or shout at you.
54:10 Even if the mountains are removed
and the hills displaced,
my devotion will not be removed from you,
nor will my covenant of friendship 633 be displaced,”
54:11 “O afflicted one, driven away, 634 and unconsoled!
Look, I am about to set your stones in antimony
and I lay your foundation with lapis-lazuli.
54:12 I will make your pinnacles out of gems, 635
your gates out of beryl, 636
54:13 All your children will be followers of the
and your children will enjoy great prosperity. 639
54:14 You will be reestablished when I vindicate you. 640
You will not experience oppression; 641
indeed, you will not be afraid.
You will not be terrified, 642
for nothing frightening 643 will come near you.
54:15 If anyone dares to 644 challenge you, it will not be my doing!
Whoever tries to challenge you will be defeated. 645
54:16 Look, I create the craftsman,
who fans the coals into a fire
and forges a weapon. 646
I create the destroyer so he might devastate.
54:17 No weapon forged to be used against you will succeed;
you will refute everyone who tries to accuse you. 647
This is what the
I will vindicate them,” 648
The Lord Gives an Invitation
55:1 “Hey, 649 all who are thirsty, come to the water!
You who have no money, come!
Buy and eat!
Come! Buy wine and milk
without money and without cost! 650
55:2 Why pay money for something that will not nourish you? 651
Enjoy fine food! 656
55:3 Pay attention and come to me!
Listen, so you can live! 657
Then I will make an unconditional covenantal promise to 658 you,
just like the reliable covenantal promises I made to David. 659
55:4 Look, I made him a witness to nations, 660
a ruler and commander of nations.”
55:5 Look, you will summon nations 661 you did not previously know;
nations 662 that did not previously know you will run to you,
because of the
the Holy One of Israel, 663
for he bestows honor on you.
55:6 Seek the
call to him while he is nearby!
55:7 The wicked need to abandon their lifestyle 665
and sinful people their plans. 666
and to their God, for he will freely forgive them. 669
55:9 for just as the sky 675 is higher than the earth,
and my plans 678 superior to your plans.55:10 679
The rain and snow fall from the sky
and do not return,
but instead water the earth
and make it produce and yield crops,
and provide seed for the planter and food for those who must eat.
55:11 In the same way, the promise that I make
does not return to me, having accomplished nothing. 680
No, it is realized as I desire
and is fulfilled as I intend.” 681
55:12 Indeed you will go out with joy;
you will be led along in peace;
the mountains and hills will give a joyful shout before you,
and all the trees in the field will clap their hands.
55:13 Evergreens will grow in place of thorn bushes,
firs will grow in place of nettles;
they will be a monument to the
a permanent reminder that will remain. 683
The Lord Invites Outsiders to Enter
56:1 This is what the
“Promote 684 justice! Do what is right!
For I am ready to deliver you;
I am ready to vindicate you openly. 685
56:2 The people who do this will be blessed, 686
the people who commit themselves to obedience, 687
who observe the Sabbath and do not defile it,
who refrain from doing anything that is wrong. 688
56:3 No foreigner who becomes a follower of 689 the
The eunuch should not say,
‘Look, I am like a dried-up tree.’”
56:4 For this is what the
“For the eunuchs who observe my Sabbaths
and choose what pleases me
and are faithful to 691 my covenant,
56:5 I will set up within my temple and my walls a monument 692
that will be better than sons and daughters.
I will set up a permanent monument 693 for them that will remain.
56:6 As for foreigners who become followers of 694 the
who love the name of the
all who observe the Sabbath and do not defile it,
and who are faithful to 695 my covenant –
56:7 I will bring them to my holy mountain;
I will make them happy in the temple where people pray to me. 696
Their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be accepted on my altar,
for my temple will be known as a temple where all nations may pray.” 697
56:8 The sovereign
the one who gathers the dispersed of Israel:
“I will still gather them up.” 698
The Lord Denounces Israel’s Paganism
56:9 All you wild animals in the fields, come and devour,
all you wild animals in the forest!
56:10 All their watchmen 699 are blind,
they are unaware. 700
All of them are like mute dogs,
unable to bark.
They pant, 701 lie down,
and love to snooze.
56:11 The dogs have big appetites;
they are never full. 702
They are shepherds who have no understanding;
they all go their own way,
each one looking for monetary gain. 703
56:12 Each one says, 704
‘Come on, I’ll get some wine!
Let’s guzzle some beer!
Tomorrow will be just like today!
We’ll have everything we want!’ 705
57:1 The godly 706 perish,
but no one cares. 707
Honest people disappear, 708
57:2 Those who live uprightly enter a place of peace;
they rest on their beds. 715
57:3 But approach, you sons of omen readers,
you offspring of adulteresses and prostitutes! 716
57:4 At whom are you laughing?
At whom are you opening your mouth
and sticking out your tongue?
You are the children of rebels,
the offspring of liars, 717
57:5 you who practice ritual sex 718 under the oaks and every green tree,
who slaughter children near the streams under the rocky overhangs. 719
57:6 Among the smooth stones of the stream are the idols you love;
they, they are the object of your devotion. 720
You pour out liquid offerings to them,
you make an offering.
Because of these things I will seek vengeance. 721
57:7 On every high, elevated hill you prepare your bed;
you go up there to offer sacrifices.
57:8 Behind the door and doorpost you put your symbols. 722
and invite them into bed with you. 725
You purchase favors from them, 726
you love their bed,
along with many perfumes. 731
You send your messengers to a distant place;
you go all the way to Sheol. 732
57:10 Because of the long distance you must travel, you get tired, 733
but you do not say, ‘I give up.’ 734
You get renewed energy, 735
so you don’t collapse. 736
57:11 Whom are you worried about?
Whom do you fear, that you would act so deceitfully
and not remember me
or think about me? 737
Because I have been silent for so long, 738
you are not afraid of me. 739
57:12 I will denounce your so-called righteousness and your deeds, 740
but they will not help you.
57:13 When you cry out for help, let your idols 741 help you!
The wind blows them all away, 742
a breeze carries them away. 743
But the one who looks to me for help 744 will inherit the land
and will have access to 745 my holy mountain.”
57:14 He says, 746
“Build it! Build it! Clear a way!
Remove all the obstacles out of the way of my people!”
57:15 For this is what the high and exalted one says,
the one who rules 747 forever, whose name is holy:
“I dwell in an exalted and holy place,
but also with the discouraged and humiliated, 748
in order to cheer up the humiliated
and to encourage the discouraged. 749
57:16 For I will not be hostile 750 forever
or perpetually angry,
for then man’s spirit would grow faint before me, 751
the life-giving breath I created.
57:17 I was angry because of their sinful greed;
I attacked them and angrily rejected them, 752
yet they remained disobedient and stubborn. 753
57:18 I have seen their behavior, 754
but I will heal them and give them rest,
and I will once again console those who mourn. 755
57:19 I am the one who gives them reason to celebrate. 756
Complete prosperity 757 is available both to those who are far away and those who are nearby,”
57:20 But the wicked are like a surging sea
that is unable to be quiet;
its waves toss up mud and sand.
57:21 There will be no prosperity,” says my God, “for the wicked.”
The Lord Desires Genuine Devotion
58:1 “Shout loudly! Don’t be quiet!
Yell as loud as a trumpet!
Confront my people with their rebellious deeds; 758
confront Jacob’s family with their sin! 759
58:2 They seek me day after day;
they want to know my requirements, 760
like a nation that does what is right
and does not reject the law of their God.
They ask me for just decrees;
they want to be near God.
58:3 They lament, 761 ‘Why don’t you notice when we fast?
Why don’t you pay attention when we humble ourselves?’
Look, at the same time you fast, you satisfy your selfish desires, 762
you oppress your workers. 763
58:4 Look, your fasting is accompanied by 764 arguments, brawls,
and fistfights. 765
Do not fast as you do today,
trying to make your voice heard in heaven.
58:5 Is this really the kind of fasting I want? 766
Do I want a day when people merely humble themselves, 767
bowing their heads like a reed
and stretching out 768 on sackcloth and ashes?
Is this really what you call a fast,
a day that is pleasing to the
58:6 No, this is the kind of fast I want. 769
I want you 770 to remove the sinful chains,
to tear away the ropes of the burdensome yoke,
to set free the oppressed, 771
and to break every burdensome yoke.
58:7 I want you 772 to share your food with the hungry
and to provide shelter for homeless, oppressed people. 773
When you see someone naked, clothe him!
Don’t turn your back on your own flesh and blood! 774
58:8 Then your light will shine like the sunrise; 775
your restoration will quickly arrive; 776
your godly behavior 777 will go before you,
58:9 Then you will call out, and the
you will cry out, and he will reply, ‘Here I am.’
You must 779 remove the burdensome yoke from among you
and stop pointing fingers and speaking sinfully.
58:10 You must 780 actively help the hungry
and feed the oppressed. 781
Then your light will dispel the darkness, 782
and your darkness will be transformed into noonday. 783
he will feed you even in parched regions. 784
He will give you renewed strength, 785
and you will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring that continually produces water.
58:12 Your perpetual ruins will be rebuilt; 786
you will reestablish the ancient foundations.
You will be called, ‘The one who repairs broken walls,
the one who makes the streets inhabitable again.’ 787
rather than doing anything you please on my holy day. 790
You must look forward to the Sabbath 791
and treat the
You must treat it with respect by refraining from your normal activities,
and by refraining from your selfish pursuits and from making business deals. 793
58:14 Then you will find joy in your relationship to the
and I will give you great prosperity, 795
and cause crops to grow on the land I gave to your ancestor Jacob.” 796
Know for certain that the
Injustice Brings Alienation from God
59:1 Look, the
his ear is not too deaf to hear you. 799
59:2 But your sinful acts have alienated you from your God;
your sins have caused him to reject you and not listen to your prayers. 800
59:3 For your hands are stained with blood
and your fingers with sin;
your lips speak lies,
your tongue utters malicious words.
59:4 No one is concerned about justice; 801
no one sets forth his case truthfully.
They depend on false words 802 and tell lies;
they conceive of oppression 803
and give birth to sin.
59:5 They hatch the eggs of a poisonous snake
and spin a spider’s web.
Whoever eats their eggs will die,
a poisonous snake is hatched. 804
59:6 Their webs cannot be used for clothing;
they cannot cover themselves with what they make.
Their deeds are sinful;
they commit violent crimes. 805
59:7 They are eager to do evil, 806
quick to shed innocent blood. 807
Their thoughts are sinful;
they crush and destroy. 808
59:8 They are unfamiliar with peace;
their deeds are unjust. 809
They use deceitful methods,
and whoever deals with them is unfamiliar with peace. 810
Israel Confesses its Sin
and salvation does not reach us.
59:10 We grope along the wall like the blind,
we grope like those who cannot see; 819
we stumble at noontime as if it were evening.
Though others are strong, we are like dead men. 820
59:11 We all growl like bears,
we coo mournfully like doves;
we wait for deliverance, 821 but there is none,
for salvation, but it is far from us.
59:12 For you are aware of our many rebellious deeds, 822
and our sins testify against us;
indeed, we are aware of our rebellious deeds;
we know our sins all too well. 823
59:13 We have rebelled and tried to deceive the
we turned back from following our God.
We stir up 824 oppression and rebellion;
we tell lies we concocted in our minds. 825
59:14 Justice is driven back;
godliness 826 stands far off.
Indeed, 827 honesty stumbles in the city square
and morality is not even able to enter.
59:15 Honesty has disappeared;
the one who tries to avoid evil is robbed.
for there is no justice.
The Lord Intervenes
59:16 He sees there is no advocate; 829
he is shocked 830 that no one intervenes.
So he takes matters into his own hands; 831
his desire for justice drives him on. 832
and his desire to deliver is like a helmet on his head. 835
He puts on the garments of vengeance 836
and wears zeal like a robe.
59:18 He repays them for what they have done,
dispensing angry judgment to his adversaries
and punishing his enemies. 837
He repays the coastlands. 838
in the east they recognize his splendor. 841
For he comes like a rushing 842 stream
driven on by wind sent from the
59:20 “A protector 844 comes to Zion,
to those in Jacob who repent of their rebellious deeds,” 845 says the
59:21 “As for me, this is my promise to 846 them,” says the
Zion’s Future Splendor
60:1 “Arise! Shine! For your light arrives!
The splendor 848 of the
60:2 For, look, darkness covers the earth
and deep darkness covers 849 the nations,
his splendor 850 appears over you.
60:3 Nations come to your light,
kings to your bright light.
60:4 Look all around you! 851
They all gather and come to you –
your sons come from far away
and your daughters are escorted by guardians.
60:5 Then you will look and smile, 852
you will be excited and your heart will swell with pride. 853
For the riches of distant lands 854 will belong to you
and the wealth of nations will come to you.
60:6 Camel caravans will cover your roads, 855
young camels from Midian and Ephah.
All the merchants of Sheba 856 will come,
bringing gold and incense
and singing praises to the
60:7 All the sheep of Kedar will be gathered to you;
the rams of Nebaioth will be available to you as sacrifices. 858
They will go up on my altar acceptably, 859
and I will bestow honor on my majestic temple.
60:8 Who are these who float along 860 like a cloud,
who fly like doves to their shelters? 861
60:9 Indeed, the coastlands 862 look eagerly for me,
the large ships 863 are in the lead,
bringing your sons from far away,
along with their silver and gold,
to honor the
the Holy One of Israel, 865 for he has bestowed honor on you.
60:10 Foreigners will rebuild your walls;
their kings will serve you.
Even though I struck you down in my anger,
I will restore my favor and have compassion on you. 866
60:11 Your gates will remain open at all times;
they will not be shut during the day or at night,
so that the wealth of nations may be delivered,
with their kings leading the way. 867
60:12 Indeed, 868 nations or kingdoms that do not serve you will perish;
such nations will be totally destroyed. 869
60:13 The splendor of Lebanon will come to you,
its evergreens, firs, and cypresses together,
to beautify my palace; 870
I will bestow honor on my throne room. 871
60:14 The children of your oppressors will come bowing to you;
all who treated you with disrespect will bow down at your feet.
They will call you, ‘The City of the
Zion of the Holy One of Israel.’ 872
60:15 You were once abandoned
and despised, with no one passing through,
but I will make you 873 a permanent source of pride
and joy to coming generations.
60:16 You will drink the milk of nations;
you will nurse at the breasts of kings. 874
Then you will recognize that I, the
60:17 Instead of bronze, I will bring you gold,
instead of iron, I will bring you silver,
instead of wood, I will bring you 877 bronze,
instead of stones, I will bring you 878 iron.
I will make prosperity 879 your overseer,
and vindication your sovereign ruler. 880
60:18 Sounds of violence 881 will no longer be heard in your land,
or the sounds of 882 destruction and devastation within your borders.
You will name your walls, ‘Deliverance,’
and your gates, ‘Praise.’
60:19 The sun will no longer supply light for you by day,
nor will the moon’s brightness shine on you;
the splendor of your God will shine upon you. 883
60:20 Your sun will no longer set;
your moon will not disappear; 884
your time 885 of sorrow will be over.
60:21 All of your people will be godly; 886
they will possess the land permanently.
I will plant them like a shoot;
they will be the product of my labor,
through whom I reveal my splendor. 887
60:22 The least of you will multiply into 888 a thousand;
the smallest of you will become a large nation.
When the right time comes, I the
The Lord Will Rejuvenate His People
61:1 The spirit of the sovereign
to help 894 the brokenhearted,
to decree the release of captives,
and the freeing of prisoners,
61:2 to announce the year when the
the day when our God will seek vengeance, 895
to console all who mourn,
61:3 to strengthen those who mourn in Zion,
by giving them a turban, instead of ashes,
oil symbolizing joy, 896 instead of mourning,
They will be called oaks of righteousness, 899
trees planted by the
61:4 They will rebuild the perpetual ruins
and restore the places that were desolate; 901
they will reestablish the ruined cities,
the places that have been desolate since ancient times.61:5 902
“Foreigners will take care of 903 your sheep;
foreigners will work in your fields and vineyards.
61:6 You will be called, ‘the
servants of our God.’ 904
You will enjoy 905 the wealth of nations
61:7 Instead of shame, you will get a double portion; 908
instead of humiliation, they will rejoice over the land they receive. 909
Yes, 910 they will possess a double portion in their land
and experience lasting joy.
61:8 For I, the
and hate robbery and sin.
I will repay them because of my faithfulness; 911
I will make a permanent covenant with them.
61:9 Their descendants will be known among the nations,
their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will recognize that
I will be overjoyed because of my God. 915
For he clothes me in garments of deliverance;
he puts on me a robe symbolizing vindication. 916
I look like a bridegroom when he wears a turban as a priest would;
I look like a bride when she puts on her jewelry. 917
61:11 For just as the ground produces its crops
and a garden yields its produce,
so the sovereign
and give his people reason to praise him in the sight of all the nations. 919
The Lord Takes Delight in Zion
62:1 “For the sake of Zion I will not be silent;
for the sake of Jerusalem 920 I will not be quiet,
until her vindication shines brightly 921
and her deliverance burns like a torch.”
62:2 Nations will see your vindication,
and all kings your splendor.
You will be called by a new name
62:3 You will be a majestic crown in the hand of the
a royal turban in the hand of your God.
62:4 You will no longer be called, “Abandoned,”
and your land will no longer be called “Desolate.”
and your land “Married.” 925
and your land will be married to him. 926
62:5 As a young man marries a young woman,
so your sons 927 will marry you.
As a bridegroom rejoices over a bride,
so your God will rejoice over you.
62:6 I 928 post watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem;
they should keep praying all day and all night. 929
You who pray to 930 the
62:7 Don’t allow him to rest until he reestablishes Jerusalem, 931
until he makes Jerusalem the pride 932 of the earth.
by his strong arm: 933
“I will never again give your grain
to your enemies as food,
and foreigners will not drink your wine,
which you worked hard to produce.
62:9 But those who harvest the grain 934 will eat it,
and will praise the
Those who pick the grapes will drink the wine 935
in the courts of my holy sanctuary.”
62:10 Come through! Come through the gates!
Prepare the way for the people!
Build it! Build the roadway!
Remove the stones!
Lift a signal flag for the nations!
62:11 Look, the
“Say to Daughter Zion,
‘Look, your deliverer comes!
Look, his reward is with him
and his reward goes before him!’” 937
62:12 They will be called, “The Holy People,
the Ones Protected 938 by the
You will be called, “Sought After,
City Not Abandoned.”
The Victorious Divine Warrior
63:1 Who is this who comes from Edom, 939
dressed in bright red, coming from Bozrah? 940
who marches confidently 943 because of his great strength?
“It is I, the one who announces vindication,
and who is able to deliver!” 944
63:2 Why are your clothes red?
Why do you look like someone who has stomped on grapes in a vat? 945
63:3 “I have stomped grapes in the winepress all by myself;
no one from the nations joined me.
I stomped on them 946 in my anger;
I trampled them down in my rage.
Their juice splashed on my garments,
and stained 947 all my clothes.
63:4 For I looked forward to the day of vengeance,
and then payback time arrived. 948
63:5 I looked, but there was no one to help;
I was shocked because there was no one offering support. 949
So my right arm accomplished deliverance;
my raging anger drove me on. 950
63:6 I trampled nations in my anger,
I made them drunk 951 in my rage,
I splashed their blood on the ground.” 952
A Prayer for Divine Intervention
63:7 I will tell of the faithful acts of the
I will tell about all 953 the
the many good things he did for the family of Israel, 954
because of 955 his compassion and great faithfulness.
63:8 He said, “Certainly they will be my people,
children who are not disloyal.” 956
He became their deliverer.
63:9 Through all that they suffered, he suffered too. 957
The messenger sent from his very presence 958 delivered them.
In his love and mercy he protected 959 them;
he lifted them up and carried them throughout ancient times. 960
so he turned into an enemy
and fought against them.
63:11 His people remembered the ancient times. 963
Where is the one who brought them up out of the sea,
along with the shepherd of 964 his flock?
Where is the one who placed his holy Spirit among them, 965
63:12 the one who made his majestic power available to Moses, 966
who divided the water before them,
gaining for himself a lasting reputation, 967
63:13 who led them through the deep water?
Like a horse running on flat land 968 they did not stumble.
63:14 Like an animal that goes down into a valley to graze, 969
so the Spirit of the
In this way 970 you guided your people,
gaining for yourself an honored reputation. 971
63:15 Look down from heaven and take notice,
from your holy, majestic palace!
Where are your zeal 972 and power?
Do not hold back your tender compassion! 973
63:16 For you are our father,
though Abraham does not know us
and Israel does not recognize us.
you have been called our protector from ancient times. 974
and make our minds stubborn so that we do not obey you? 977
Return for the sake of your servants,
the tribes of your inheritance!
but then our adversaries knocked down 980 your holy sanctuary.
63:19 We existed from ancient times, 981
but you did not rule over them,
they were not your subjects. 982
The mountains would tremble 985 before you!
64:2 As when fire ignites dry wood,
or fire makes water boil,
let your adversaries know who you are, 986
and may the nations shake at your presence!
64:3 When you performed awesome deeds that took us by surprise, 987
you came down, and the mountains trembled 988 before you.
64:4 Since ancient times no one has heard or perceived, 989
no eye has seen any God besides you,
who intervenes for those who wait for him.
who observe your commandments. 992
Look, you were angry because we violated them continually.
How then can we be saved? 993
64:6 We are all like one who is unclean,
all our so-called righteous acts are like a menstrual rag in your sight. 994
We all wither like a leaf;
our sins carry us away like the wind.
64:7 No one invokes 995 your name,
or makes an effort 996 to take hold of you.
For you have rejected us 997
and handed us over to our own sins. 998
64:8 Yet, 999
We are the clay, and you are our potter;
we are all the product of your labor. 1000
Do not hold our sins against us continually! 1001
Take a good look at your people, at all of us! 1002
64:10 Your chosen 1003 cities have become a desert;
Zion has become a desert,
Jerusalem 1004 is a desolate ruin.
64:11 Our holy temple, our pride and joy, 1005
the place where our ancestors praised you,
has been burned with fire;
all our prized possessions have been destroyed. 1006
64:12 In light of all this, 1007 how can you still hold back,
How can you be silent and continue to humiliate us?
The Lord Will Distinguish Between Sinners and the Godly
65:1 “I made myself available to those who did not ask for me; 1008
I appeared to those who did not look for me. 1009
I said, ‘Here I am! Here I am!’
to a nation that did not invoke 1010 my name.
65:2 I spread out my hands all day long
to my rebellious people,
who lived in a way that is morally unacceptable,
and who did what they desired. 1011
65:3 These people continually and blatantly offend me 1012
as they sacrifice in their sacred orchards 1013
and burn incense on brick altars. 1014
65:4 They sit among the tombs 1015
and keep watch all night long. 1016
They eat pork, 1017
and broth 1018 from unclean sacrificial meat is in their pans.
65:5 They say, ‘Keep to yourself!
Don’t get near me, for I am holier than you!’
These people are like smoke in my nostrils,
like a fire that keeps burning all day long.
65:6 Look, I have decreed: 1019
I will not keep silent, but will pay them back;
I will pay them back exactly what they deserve, 1020
65:7 for your sins and your ancestors’ sins,” 1021 says the
“Because they burned incense on the mountains
and offended 1022 me on the hills,
I will punish them in full measure.” 1023
65:8 This is what the
“When 1024 juice is discovered in a cluster of grapes,
someone says, ‘Don’t destroy it, for it contains juice.’ 1025
So I will do for the sake of my servants –
I will not destroy everyone. 1026
65:9 I will bring forth descendants from Jacob,
and from Judah people to take possession of my mountains.
My chosen ones will take possession of the land; 1027
my servants will live there.
65:10 Sharon 1028 will become a pasture for sheep,
they will belong to my people, who seek me. 1031
65:11 But as for you who abandon the
and forget about worshiping at 1032 my holy mountain,
who prepare a feast for the god called ‘Fortune,’ 1033
and fill up wine jugs for the god called ‘Destiny’ 1034 –
65:12 I predestine you to die by the sword, 1035
all of you will kneel down at the slaughtering block, 1036
because I called to you, and you did not respond,
I spoke and you did not listen.
You did evil before me; 1037
you chose to do what displeases me.”
65:13 So this is what the sovereign
“Look, my servants will eat, but you will be hungry!
Look, my servants will drink, but you will be thirsty!
Look, my servants will rejoice, but you will be humiliated!
65:14 Look, my servants will shout for joy as happiness fills their hearts! 1038
But you will cry out as sorrow fills your hearts; 1039
you will wail because your spirits will be crushed. 1040
65:15 Your names will live on in the curse formulas of my chosen ones. 1041
but he will give his servants another name.
65:16 Whoever pronounces a blessing in the earth 1042
will do so in the name of the faithful God; 1043
whoever makes an oath in the earth
will do so in the name of the faithful God. 1044
For past problems will be forgotten;
I will no longer think about them. 1045
65:17 For look, I am ready to create
new heavens and a new earth! 1046
The former ones 1047 will not be remembered;
no one will think about them anymore. 1048
65:18 But be happy and rejoice forevermore
over what I am about to create!
and her people to be a source of happiness. 1051
65:19 Jerusalem will bring me joy,
and my people will bring me happiness. 1052
The sound of weeping or cries of sorrow
will never be heard in her again.
65:20 Never again will one of her infants live just a few days 1053
or an old man die before his time. 1054
Indeed, no one will die before the age of a hundred, 1055
anyone who fails to reach 1056 the age of a hundred will be considered cursed.
65:21 They will build houses and live in them;
they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
65:22 No longer will they build a house only to have another live in it, 1057
or plant a vineyard only to have another eat its fruit, 1058
for my people will live as long as trees, 1059
and my chosen ones will enjoy to the fullest what they have produced. 1060
65:23 They will not work in vain,
or give birth to children that will experience disaster. 1061
and their descendants. 1062
65:24 Before they even call out, 1063 I will respond;
while they are still speaking, I will hear.
65:25 A wolf and a lamb will graze together; 1064
a lion, like an ox, will eat straw, 1065
and a snake’s food will be dirt. 1066
They will no longer injure or destroy
on my entire royal mountain,” 1067 says the
66:1 This is what the
“The heavens are my throne
and the earth is my footstool.
Where then is the house you will build for me?
Where is the place where I will rest?
66:2 My hand made them; 1068
that is how they came to be,” 1069 says the
I show special favor 1070 to the humble and contrite,
who respect what I have to say. 1071
66:3 The one who slaughters a bull also strikes down a man; 1072
the one who sacrifices a lamb also breaks a dog’s neck; 1073
the one who presents an offering includes pig’s blood with it; 1074
the one who offers incense also praises an idol. 1075
They have decided to behave this way; 1076
they enjoy these disgusting practices. 1077
66:4 So I will choose severe punishment 1078 for them;
I will bring on them what they dread,
because I called, and no one responded,
I spoke and they did not listen.
They did evil before me; 1079
they chose to do what displeases me.”
66:5 Hear the word of the
you who respect what he has to say! 1080
Your countrymen, 1081 who hate you
and exclude you, supposedly for the sake of my name,
say, “May the
then we will witness your joy.” 1082
But they will be put to shame.
66:6 The sound of battle comes from the city;
the sound comes from the temple!
It is the sound of the
66:7 Before she goes into labor, she gives birth!
Before her contractions begin, she delivers a boy!
66:8 Who has ever heard of such a thing?
Who has ever seen this?
Can a country 1083 be brought forth in one day?
Can a nation be born in a single moment?
Yet as soon as Zion goes into labor she gives birth to sons!
66:9 “Do I bring a baby to the birth opening and then not deliver it?”
“Or do I bring a baby to the point of delivery and then hold it back?”
asks your God. 1084
66:10 Be happy for Jerusalem
and rejoice with her, all you who love her!
Share in her great joy,
all you who have mourned over her!
you will feed with joy from her milk-filled breasts. 1087
66:12 For this is what the
“Look, I am ready to extend to her prosperity that will flow like a river,
the riches of nations will flow into her like a stream that floods its banks. 1088
You will nurse from her breast 1089 and be carried at her side;
you will play on her knees.
66:13 As a mother consoles a child, 1090
so I will console you,
and you will be consoled over Jerusalem.”
66:14 When you see this, you will be happy, 1091
and you will be revived. 1092
and his anger to his enemies. 1093
66:15 For look, the
his chariots come like a windstorm, 1094
to reveal his raging anger,
his battle cry, and his flaming arrows. 1095
66:16 For the
with fire and his sword;
66:17 “As for those who consecrate and ritually purify themselves so they can follow their leader and worship in the sacred orchards, 1098 those who eat the flesh of pigs and other disgusting creatures, like mice 1099 – they will all be destroyed together,” 1100 says the