Bible: Isaiah 44:12-28

44:12 A blacksmith works with his tool 1 

and forges metal over the coals.

He forms it 2  with hammers;

he makes it with his strong arm.

He gets hungry and loses his energy; 3 

he drinks no water and gets tired.

44:13 A carpenter takes measurements; 4 

he marks out an outline of its form; 5 

he scrapes 6  it with chisels,

and marks it with a compass.

He patterns it after the human form, 7 

like a well-built human being,

and puts it in a shrine. 8 

44:14 He cuts down cedars

and acquires a cypress 9  or an oak.

He gets 10  trees from the forest;

he plants a cedar 11  and the rain makes it grow.

44:15 A man uses it to make a fire; 12 

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. 13 

44:16 Half of it he burns in the fire

over that half he cooks 14  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. 15 

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?’ 16 

44:20 He feeds on ashes; 17 

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?’ 18 

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! 19 

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. 20 

Come back to me, for I protect 21  you.”

44:23 Shout for joy, O sky, for the Lord intervenes; 22 

shout out, you subterranean regions 23  of the earth.

O mountains, give a joyful shout;

you too, O forest and all your trees! 24 

For the Lord protects 25  Jacob;

he reveals his splendor through Israel. 26 

The Lord Empowers Cyrus

44:24 This is what the Lord, your protector, 27  says,

the one who formed you in the womb:

“I am the Lord, who made everything,

who alone stretched out the sky,

who fashioned the earth all by myself, 28 

44:25 who frustrates the omens of the empty talkers 29 

and humiliates 30  the omen readers,

who overturns the counsel of the wise men 31 

and makes their advice 32  seem foolish,

44:26 who fulfills the oracles of his prophetic servants 33 

and brings to pass the announcements 34  of his messengers,

who says about Jerusalem, 35 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,’

44:28 who commissions 36  Cyrus, the one I appointed as shepherd 37 

to carry out all my wishes 38 

and to decree concerning Jerusalem, ‘She will be rebuilt,’

and concerning the temple, ‘It will be reconstructed.’ 39 

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