Bible: Isaiah 6-12

Isaiah’s Commission

6:1 In the year of King Uzziah’s death, 1  I saw the sovereign master 2  seated on a high, elevated throne. The hem of his robe filled the temple. 6:2 Seraphs 3  stood over him; each one had six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, 4  and they used the remaining two to fly. 6:3 They called out to one another, “Holy, holy, holy 5  is the Lord who commands armies! 6  His majestic splendor fills the entire earth!” 6:4 The sound of their voices shook the door frames, 7  and the temple was filled with smoke.

6:5 I said, “Too bad for me! I am destroyed, 8  for my lips are contaminated by sin, 9  and I live among people whose lips are contaminated by sin. 10  My eyes have seen the king, the Lord who commands armies.” 11  6:6 But then one of the seraphs flew toward me. In his hand was a hot coal he had taken from the altar with tongs. 6:7 He touched my mouth with it and said, “Look, this coal has touched your lips. Your evil is removed; your sin is forgiven.” 12  6:8 I heard the voice of the sovereign master say, “Whom will I send? Who will go on our behalf?” 13  I answered, “Here I am, send me! 6:9 He said, “Go and tell these people:

‘Listen continually, but don’t understand!

Look continually, but don’t perceive!’

6:10 Make the hearts of these people calloused;

make their ears deaf and their eyes blind!

Otherwise they might see with their eyes and hear with their ears,

their hearts might understand and they might repent and be healed.” 14 

6:11 I replied, “How long, sovereign master?” He said,

Until cities are in ruins and unpopulated,

and houses are uninhabited,

and the land is ruined and devastated,

6:12 and the Lord has sent the people off to a distant place,

and the very heart of the land is completely abandoned. 15 

6:13 Even if only a tenth of the people remain in the land, it will again be destroyed, 16  like one of the large sacred trees 17  or an Asherah pole, when a sacred pillar on a high place is thrown down. 18  That sacred pillar symbolizes the special chosen family.” 19 

Ahaz Receives a Sign

7:1 During 20  the reign of Ahaz son of Jotham, son of Uzziah, king of Judah, King Rezin of Syria and King Pekah son of Remaliah of Israel marched up to Jerusalem 21  to do battle, but they were unable to prevail against it. 22 

7:2 It was reported to the family 23  of David, “Syria has allied with 24  Ephraim.” They and their people were emotionally shaken, just as the trees of the forest shake before the wind. 25  7:3 So the Lord told Isaiah, “Go out with your son Shear-jashub 26  and meet Ahaz at the end of the conduit of the upper pool which is located on the road to the field where they wash and dry cloth. 27  7:4 Tell him, ‘Make sure you stay calm! 28  Don’t be afraid! Don’t be intimidated 29  by these two stubs of smoking logs, 30  or by the raging anger of Rezin, Syria, and the son of Remaliah. 7:5 Syria has plotted with Ephraim and the son of Remaliah to bring about your demise. 31  7:6 They say, “Let’s attack Judah, terrorize it, and conquer it. 32  Then we’ll set up the son of Tabeel as its king.” 33  7:7 For this reason the sovereign master, 34  the Lord, says:

“It will not take place;

it will not happen.

7:8 For Syria’s leader is Damascus,

and the leader of Damascus is Rezin.

Within sixty-five years Ephraim will no longer exist as a nation. 35 

7:9 Ephraim’s leader is Samaria,

and Samaria’s leader is the son of Remaliah.

If your faith does not remain firm,

then you will not remain secure.” 36 

7:10 The Lord again spoke to Ahaz: 7:11 Ask for a confirming sign from the Lord your God. You can even ask for something miraculous.” 37  7:12 But Ahaz responded, “I don’t want to ask; I don’t want to put the Lord to a test.” 38  7:13 So Isaiah replied, 39 Pay attention, 40  family 41  of David. 42  Do you consider it too insignificant to try the patience of men? Is that why you are also trying the patience of my God? 7:14 For this reason the sovereign master himself will give you a confirming sign. 43  Look, this 44  young woman 45  is about to conceive 46  and will give birth to a son. You, young woman, will name him 47  Immanuel. 48  7:15 He will eat sour milk 49  and honey, which will help him know how 50  to reject evil and choose what is right. 7:16 Here is why this will be so: 51  Before the child knows how to reject evil and choose what is right, the land 52  whose two kings you fear will be desolate. 53  7:17 The Lord will bring on you, your people, and your father’s family a time 54  unlike any since Ephraim departed from Judah – the king of Assyria! 55 

7:18 At that time 56  the Lord will whistle for flies from the distant streams of Egypt and for bees from the land of Assyria. 57  7:19 All of them will come and make their home 58  in the ravines between the cliffs, and in the crevices of the cliffs, in all the thorn bushes, and in all the watering holes. 59  7:20 At that time 60  the sovereign master will use a razor hired from the banks of the Euphrates River, 61  the king of Assyria, to shave the head and the pubic hair; 62  it will also shave off the beard. 7:21 At that time 63  a man will keep alive a young cow from the herd and a couple of goats. 7:22 From the abundance of milk they produce, 64  he will have sour milk for his meals. Indeed, everyone left in the heart of the land will eat sour milk and honey. 7:23 At that time 65  every place where there had been a thousand vines worth a thousand shekels will be overrun 66  with thorns and briers. 7:24 With bow and arrow 67  men will hunt 68  there, for the whole land will be covered 69  with thorns and briers. 7:25 They will stay away from all the hills that were cultivated, for fear of the thorns and briers. 70  Cattle will graze there and sheep will trample on them. 71 

A Sign-Child is Born

8:1 The Lord told me, “Take a large tablet 72  and inscribe these words 73  on it with an ordinary stylus: 74  ‘Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz.’ 75  8:2 Then I will summon 76  as my reliable witnesses Uriah the priest and Zechariah son of Jeberekiah.” 8:3 I then had sexual relations with the prophetess; she conceived and gave birth to a son. The Lord told me, “Name him Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz, 8:4 for before the child knows how to cry out, ‘My fatheror ‘My mother,’ the wealth of Damascus and the plunder of Samaria 77  will be carried off by the king of Assyria.” 78 

8:5 The Lord spoke to me again: 8:6 These people 79  have rejected the gently flowing waters of Shiloah 80  and melt in fear over Rezin and the son of Remaliah. 81  8:7 So look, the sovereign master 82  is bringing up against them the turbulent and mighty waters of the Euphrates River 83 the king of Assyria and all his majestic power. It will reach flood stage and overflow its banks. 84  8:8 It will spill into Judah, flooding and engulfing, as it reaches to the necks of its victims. He will spread his wings out over your entire land, 85  O Immanuel.” 86 

8:9 You will be broken, 87  O nations;

you will be shattered! 88 

Pay attention, all you distant lands of the earth!

Get ready for battle, and you will be shattered!

Get ready for battle, and you will be shattered! 89 

8:10 Devise your strategy, but it will be thwarted!

Issue your orders, but they will not be executed! 90 

For God is with us! 91 

The Lord Encourages Isaiah

8:11 Indeed this is what the Lord told me. He took hold of me firmly and warned me not to act like these people: 92 

8:12Do not say, ‘Conspiracy,’ every time these people say the word. 93 

Don’t be afraid of what scares them; don’t be terrified.

8:13 You must recognize the authority of the Lord who commands armies. 94 

He is the one you must respect;

he is the one you must fear. 95 

8:14 He will become a sanctuary, 96 

but a stone that makes a person trip,

and a rock that makes one stumble

to the two houses of Israel. 97 

He will become 98  a trap and a snare

to the residents of Jerusalem. 99 

8:15 Many will stumble over the stone and the rock, 100 

and will fall and be seriously injured,

and will be ensnared and captured.”

8:16 Tie up the scroll as legal evidence, 101 

seal the official record of God’s instructions and give it to my followers. 102 

8:17 I will wait patiently for the Lord,

who has rejected the family of Jacob; 103 

I will wait for him.

8:18 Look, I and the sons whom the Lord has given me 104  are reminders and object lessons 105  in Israel, sent from the Lord who commands armies, who lives on Mount Zion.


Darkness Turns to Light as an Ideal King Arrives


They will say to you, “Seek oracles at the pits used to conjure up underworld spirits, from the magicians who chirp and mutter incantations. 107  Should people not seek oracles from their gods, by asking the dead about the destiny of the living? 108  8:20 Then you must recall the Lord’s instructions and the prophetic testimony of what would happen. 109  Certainly they say such things because their minds are spiritually darkened. 110  8:21 They will pass through the land 111  destitute and starving. Their hunger will make them angry, 112  and they will curse their king and their God 113  as they look upward. 8:22 When one looks out over the land, he sees 114  distress and darkness, gloom 115  and anxiety, darkness and people forced from the land. 116  9:1 117  The gloom will be dispelled for those who were anxious. 118 

In earlier times he 119  humiliated

the land of Zebulun,

and the land of Naphtali; 120 

but now he brings honor 121 

to the way of the sea,

the region beyond the Jordan,

and Galilee of the nations. 122 

9:2 The people walking in darkness

see a bright light; 123 

light shines

on those who live in a land of deep darkness. 124 

9:3 You 125  have enlarged the nation;

you give them great joy. 126 

They rejoice in your presence

as harvesters rejoice;

as warriors celebrate 127  when they divide up the plunder.

9:4 For their oppressive yoke

and the club that strikes their shoulders,

the cudgel the oppressor uses on them, 128 

you have shattered, as in the day of Midian’s defeat. 129 

9:5 Indeed every boot that marches and shakes the earth 130 

and every garment dragged through blood

is used as fuel for the fire.

9:6 For a child has been 131  born to us,

a son has been given to us.

He shoulders responsibility

and is called: 132 

Extraordinary Strategist, 133 

Mighty God, 134 

Everlasting Father, 135 

Prince of Peace. 136 

9:7 His dominion will be vast 137 

and he will bring immeasurable prosperity. 138 

He will rule on David’s throne

and over David’s kingdom, 139 

establishing it 140  and strengthening it

by promoting justice and fairness, 141 

from this time forward and forevermore.

The Lord’s intense devotion to his people 142  will accomplish this.


God’s Judgment Intensifies


The sovereign master 144  decreed judgment 145  on Jacob,

and it fell on Israel. 146 

9:9 All the people were aware 147  of it,

the people of Ephraim and those living in Samaria. 148 

Yet with pride and an arrogant attitude, they said, 149 

9:10The bricks have fallen,

but we will rebuild with chiseled stone;

the sycamore fig trees have been cut down,

but we will replace them with cedars.” 150 

9:11 Then the Lord provoked 151  their adversaries to attack them, 152 

he stirred up 153  their enemies

9:12 Syria from the east,

and the Philistines from the west,

they gobbled up Israelite territory. 154 

Despite all this, his anger does not subside,

and his hand is ready to strike again. 155 

9:13 The people did not return to the one who struck them,

they did not seek reconciliation 156  with the Lord who commands armies.

9:14 So the Lord cut off Israel’s head and tail,

both the shoots and stalk 157  in one day.

9:15 The leaders and the highly respected people 158  are the head,

the prophets who teach lies are the tail.

9:16 The leaders of this nation were misleading people,

and the people being led were destroyed. 159 

9:17 So the sovereign master was not pleased 160  with their young men,

he took no pity 161  on their orphans and widows;

for the whole nation was godless 162  and did wicked things, 163 

every mouth was speaking disgraceful words. 164 

Despite all this, his anger does not subside,

and his hand is ready to strike again. 165 

9:18 For 166  evil burned like a fire, 167 

it consumed thorns and briers;

it burned up the thickets of the forest,

and they went up in smoke. 168 

9:19 Because of the anger of the Lord who commands armies, the land was scorched, 169 

and the people became fuel for the fire. 170 

People had no compassion on one another. 171 

9:20 They devoured 172  on the right, but were still hungry,

they ate on the left, but were not satisfied.

People even ate 173  the flesh of their own arm! 174 

9:21 Manasseh fought against 175  Ephraim,

and Ephraim against Manasseh;

together they fought against Judah.

Despite all this, his anger does not subside,

and his hand is ready to strike again. 176 

10:1 Those who enact unjust policies are as good as dead, 177 

those who are always instituting unfair regulations, 178 

10:2 to keep the poor from getting fair treatment,

and to deprive 179  the oppressed among my people of justice,

so they can steal what widows own,

and loot what belongs to orphans. 180 

10:3 What will you do on judgment day, 181 

when destruction arrives from a distant place?

To whom will you run for help?

Where will you leave your wealth?

10:4 You will have no place to go, except to kneel with the prisoners,

or to fall among those who have been killed. 182 

Despite all this, his anger does not subside,

and his hand is ready to strike again. 183 

The Lord Turns on Arrogant Assyria

10:5 Assyria, the club I use to vent my anger, is as good as dead, 184 

a cudgel with which I angrily punish. 185 

10:6 I sent him 186  against a godless 187  nation,

I ordered him to attack the people with whom I was angry, 188 

to take plunder and to carry away loot,

to trample them down 189  like dirt in the streets.

10:7 But he does not agree with this,

his mind does not reason this way, 190 

for his goal is to destroy,

and to eliminate many nations. 191 

10:8 Indeed, 192  he says:

“Are not my officials all kings?

10:9 Is not Calneh like Carchemish?

Hamath like Arpad?

Samaria like Damascus? 193 

10:10 I overpowered kingdoms ruled by idols, 194 

whose carved images were more impressive than Jerusalem’s 195  or Samaria’s.

10:11 As I have done to Samaria and its idols,

so I will do to Jerusalem and its idols.” 196 

10:12 But when 197  the sovereign master 198  finishes judging 199  Mount Zion and Jerusalem, then I 200  will punish the king of Assyria for what he has proudly planned and for the arrogant attitude he displays. 201  10:13 For he says:

“By my strong hand I have accomplished this,

by my strategy that I devised.

I invaded the territory of nations, 202 

and looted their storehouses.

Like a mighty conqueror, 203  I brought down rulers. 204 

10:14 My hand discovered the wealth of the nations, as if it were in a nest,

as one gathers up abandoned eggs,

I gathered up the whole earth.

There was no wing flapping,

or open mouth chirping.” 205 

10:15 Does an ax exalt itself over the one who wields it,

or a saw magnify itself over the one who cuts with it? 206 

As if a scepter should brandish the one who raises it,

or a staff should lift up what is not made of wood!

10:16 For this reason 207  the sovereign master, the Lord who commands armies, will make his healthy ones emaciated. 208  His majestic glory will go up in smoke. 209 

10:17 The light of Israel 210  will become a fire,

their Holy One 211  will become a flame;

it will burn and consume the Assyrian king’s 212  briers

and his thorns in one day.

10:18 The splendor of his forest and his orchard

will be completely destroyed, 213 

as when a sick man’s life ebbs away. 214 

10:19 There will be so few trees left in his forest,

a child will be able to count them. 215 

10:20 At that time 216  those left in Israel, those who remain of the family 217  of Jacob, will no longer rely on a foreign leader that abuses them. 218  Instead they will truly 219  rely on the Lord, the Holy One of Israel. 220  10:21 A remnant will come back, a remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God. 221  10:22 For though your people, Israel, are as numerous as 222  the sand on the seashore, only a remnant will come back. 223  Destruction has been decreed; 224  just punishment 225  is about to engulf you. 226  10:23 The sovereign master, the Lord who commands armies, is certainly ready to carry out the decreed destruction throughout the land. 227 

10:24 So 228  here is what the sovereign master, the Lord who commands armies, says: “My people who live in Zion, do not be afraid of Assyria, even though they beat you with a club and lift their cudgel against you as Egypt did. 229  10:25 For very soon my fury 230  will subside, and my anger will be directed toward their destruction.” 10:26 The Lord who commands armies is about to beat them 231  with a whip, similar to the way he struck down Midian at the rock of Oreb. 232  He will use his staff against the sea, lifting it up as he did in Egypt. 233 

10:27 At that time 234 

the Lord will remove their burden from your shoulders, 235 

and their yoke from your neck;

the yoke will be taken off because your neck will be too large. 236 

10:28 237 

They 238  attacked 239  Aiath,

moved through Migron,

depositing their supplies at Micmash.

10:29 They went through the pass,

spent the night at Geba.

Ramah trembled,

Gibeah of Saul ran away.

10:30 Shout out, daughter of Gallim!

Pay attention, Laishah!

Answer her, Anathoth! 240 

10:31 Madmenah flees,

the residents of Gebim have hidden.

10:32 This very day, standing in Nob,

they shake their fist at Daughter Zion’s mountain 241 

at the hill of Jerusalem.

10:33 Look, the sovereign master, the Lord who commands armies,

is ready to cut off the branches with terrifying power. 242 

The tallest trees 243  will be cut down,

the loftiest ones will be brought low.

10:34 The thickets of the forest will be chopped down with an ax,

and mighty Lebanon will fall. 244 

An Ideal King Establishes a Kingdom of Peace

11:1 A shoot will grow out of Jesse’s 245  root stock,

a bud will sprout 246  from his roots.

11:2 The Lord’s spirit will rest on him 247 

a spirit that gives extraordinary wisdom, 248 

a spirit that provides the ability to execute plans, 249 

a spirit that produces absolute loyalty to the Lord. 250 

11:3 He will take delight in obeying the Lord. 251 

He will not judge by mere appearances, 252 

or make decisions on the basis of hearsay. 253 

11:4 He will treat the poor fairly, 254 

and make right decisions 255  for the downtrodden of the earth. 256 

He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, 257 

and order the wicked to be executed. 258 

11:5 Justice will be like a belt around his waist,

integrity will be like a belt around his hips. 259 

11:6 A wolf will reside 260  with a lamb,

and a leopard will lie down with a young goat;

an ox and a young lion will graze together, 261 

as a small child leads them along.

11:7 A cow and a bear will graze together,

their young will lie down together. 262 

A lion, like an ox, will eat straw.

11:8 A baby 263  will play

over the hole of a snake; 264 

over the nest 265  of a serpent

an infant 266  will put his hand. 267 

11:9 They will no longer injure or destroy

on my entire royal mountain. 268 

For there will be universal submission to the Lord’s sovereignty,

just as the waters completely cover the sea. 269 

Israel is Reclaimed and Reunited

11:10 At that time 270  a root from Jesse 271  will stand like a signal flag for the nations. Nations will look to him for guidance, 272  and his residence will be majestic. 11:11 At that time 273  the sovereign master 274  will again lift his hand 275  to reclaim 276  the remnant of his people 277  from Assyria, Egypt, Pathros, 278  Cush, 279  Elam, Shinar, 280  Hamath, and the seacoasts. 281 

11:12 He will lift a signal flag for the nations;

he will gather Israel’s dispersed people 282 

and assemble Judah’s scattered people

from the four corners of the earth.

11:13 Ephraim’s jealousy will end, 283 

and Judah’s hostility 284  will be eliminated.

Ephraim will no longer be jealous of Judah,

and Judah will no longer be hostile toward Ephraim.

11:14 They will swoop down 285  on the Philistine hills to the west; 286 

together they will loot the people of the east.

They will take over Edom and Moab, 287 

and the Ammonites will be their subjects.

11:15 The Lord will divide 288  the gulf 289  of the Egyptian Sea; 290 

he will wave his hand over the Euphrates River 291  and send a strong wind, 292 

he will turn it into seven dried-up streams, 293 

and enable them to walk across in their sandals.

11:16 There will be a highway leading out of Assyria

for the remnant of his people, 294 

just as there was for Israel,

when 295  they went up from the land of Egypt.

12:1 At that time 296  you will say:

“I praise you, O Lord,

for even though you were angry with me,

your anger subsided, and you consoled me.

12:2 Look, God is my deliverer! 297 

I will trust in him 298  and not fear.

For the Lord gives me strength and protects me; 299 

he has become my deliverer.” 300 

12:3 Joyfully you will draw water

from the springs of deliverance. 301 

12:4 At that time 302  you will say:

“Praise the Lord!

Ask him for help! 303 

Publicize his mighty acts among the nations!

Make it known that he is unique! 304 

12:5 Sing to the Lord, for he has done magnificent things,

let this be known 305  throughout the earth!

12:6 Cry out and shout for joy, O citizens of Zion,

for the Holy One of Israel 306  acts mightily 307  among you!

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